JITI Public Transportation Seminar 2018 Explores Public Transportation in a Cashless Society

Koichi Tagawa, Co-Chairman, NFC Forum

Recently, I accepted an invitation to present a keynote speech at the respected Japan International Transportation Institute’s (JITI) Improving the Convenience of Public Transportation in a Cashless Society Seminar in my role as Co-Chairman of the NFC Forum.  The seminar is scheduled for May 24th from 2 pm – 5 pm at The Sofitel Washington DC, Lafayette Square, 806 15th St NW, Washington, DC 20005.  A reception will immediately follow the event.

JITI is a well-regarded non-profit research organization whose mission is to conduct comprehensive research of contemporary transportation issues and make recommendations regarding United States and international transportation policies for the public welfare.  For more information:  http://www.new.japantransport.com/

Improving the Convenience of Public Transportation in a Cashless Society Seminar

The seminar’s premise is that the expanding use of mobile payment systems in the day-to-day transactions of consumers is rapidly expanding to the public transportation sector.  Indeed, public transportation is viewed by industry and analysts alike as a key sector for the rapid growth of third-party smartphone payment, identity and access applications, many of which use NFC technology.

Of interest is Japan, long a pioneer in cashless transactions.  The first transportation IC card was introduced there in 2001.  Today, over 130 million contactless payment cards have been issued.  These transportation IC cards serve multiple purposes including to pay for railroad and bus travel as well as for electronic payments for shopping at many stores.

Register for the JITI Public Transportation Seminar 2018

Along with Japan, the US and China will also be a focus of the seminar.  Attendees will have the chance to compare public transportation systems and discuss how each is addressing the challenges of a cashless society.

Keynote:  Public Transportation in a Cashless Society

In preparing my keynote address I concluded that we are truly at the dawn of a new age for public transportation ticketing.  The industry has evolved from a physical ticket to a ticket with check or magnetic stripe validation, using a light reader to validate tickets to contactless cards and mobile phones.  Public transportation is playing a significant role in this societal and technology transformation to a cashless society.  We, at the NFC Forum, are seeing parallel changes in the automotive, IoT and retail and payment areas where NFC use continues to rise.

Specifically, for the transportation sector, a catalyst for this move away from paper tickets is the use of smartphones with NFC-embedded chips. This year we expect a rapid rise in NFC mobile ticketing applications, which will replace paper-based tickets and, eventually, co-exist with contactless card solutions.  I say this because there are already over two billion NFC-enabled devices in the world today.  Many industry analysts expect the mobile ticketing market to grow approximately 20% CAGR, 2017-2021.  This growth rate is being driven by the rise of NFC mobile ticketing apps, replacement of paper-based tickets and contactless card solutions, NFC-enabled smartphones and wearables support for mobile ticketing and NFC-enabled payment such as Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay.

Personally, I believe the real driver for the increasing use of NFC-enabled smartphones in public transportation is simply people.  Operators, who have already implemented contactless card platform such as smart city cards are migrating toward mobile ticketing services that enable passengers to book and validate tickets quickly.  The operators see this as a competitive advantage.  People, on the other hand, want the convenience of reduced queuing time, more access to adjacent services and an overall better ticketing and travel experience.

Register for the JITI Public Transportation Seminar 2018

There are an increasing number of good examples of the uses of contactless payment cards and smartphones in the transit industry. So, it was with remarkably good timing that JITI USA invited several experts on the subject from Japan, the U.S. and China to discuss the progress so far, especially milestones accomplished, as well as the future path for improving the convenience of public transportation in a cashless society.  Joining me to present at the seminar are:  Weilin Zhao, Senior Research Associate, Fujitsu Research Institute; Koichi Tagawa, Co-Chairman of the Board, NFC Forum; Jennifer Dogin, Director of Smart Mobility Solutions, North America, MasterCard; Michael Gwinn, Director, Revenue and Fare Systems, Chicago Transit Authority; Kimura Naoto, Director, International Relations Department, Tokyo Metro.  Makoto Washizu, President of JITI, USA will be delivering an opening remarks followed by each speaker’s presentation. There will also be a panel discussion moderated by Nasreen Quibria, Managing Director, Q insights.

It should be an informative and lively discussion.  For more information and to register:  http://www.new.japantransport.com/2018-pt-registration

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