Transit officials in Sydney, Australia, are finishing work on an app that will allow them to issue fines to train fare evaders via mobile device. No timetable has been given for release of the app.
Sydney Trains is developing the app, known as EPIN (electronic penalty infringement notice), with Transport for NSW, its parent organization, to work in tandem with its Opal contactless smartcard electronic ticketing system. Opal allows passengers to pay for train, bus and ferry rides by tapping their card once when they get on and once when they get off.
Using EPIN, Sydney Trains agents will be able to check if users are actually scanning their cards to ride trains, buses and ferries. The current method for ensuring payment involves using near field communications (NFC) readers; transportation agents, however, have had issues with the functionality of the devices.
Sydney Trains is also hoping to build a third-party application that will allow reading of encrypted and unencrypted Opal data from a mobile interface.
The agency debuted the Opal smartcards during a trial that began in December 2012. Full rollout is expected in several regions throughout Australia by 2015.