Uber, Lyft and NFC Forum Share Stage at Smart Transit Conference on Ridership and Mobility

Paula Hunter, executive director, NFC Forum

I had the pleasure of representing the NFC Forum at the Smart Transit Congress in Baltimore, Maryland at the end of October.  Smart Transit is a highly-focused industry congress on transit technology; of the 300+ registered attendees over 50% were in the transit industry.  I was one of 50 speakers presenting on one of three themes:  Ridership and Mobility; Signaling, Communications and Safety; and Data and Asset Management.  My focus was on Ridership and Mobility and I had the opportunity to present on a panel with Uber, Lyft and others, as well as having a separate presentation of my own.

Smart Transit was organized into several overarching themes or tracks.  My presentations were included in this track:

Mobility & Partnerships: Getting passengers from A to B seamlessly

Transit agencies are waking up to a world where passengers are mode-agnostic and will use the best route available to get easily from one location to another. New modes of transportation such as rideshare are a disruptive force, and the transit sector needs to adapt to keep people out of cars and deliver more sustainable alternatives. This session will look at ways of improving mobility, from smart ticketing solutions to partnerships with other agencies and alternative modes of transportation.

    • How do innovations in fare collection improve intermodality and seamlessness?
    • What technological infrastructure is needed to ensure true mobility?
    • Overcoming the challenge of the first and last mile, especially in suburban and rural areas.
    • How can transit agencies ensure they continue to serve poorer communities, people with disabilities, the unbanked, and those without smartphones

Achieving a Seamless and Sustainable Urban Transportation Network Panel

Within the Mobility & Partnerships:  Getting passengers from A to B seamlessly track, I participated in a panel discussion entitled Achieving a Seamless and Sustainable Urban Transportation Network.  I shared the stage with Uber, Lyft, Baltimore City DOT, Bikemore, Eurotech, Sound Transit and the Shared Use Mobility Center.  For me, the key takeaway from the panel was that NFC is more relevant today than it has ever been.  Many of the auto, bike and mass transit solutions discussed on stage need a technology like NFC for payment, access and identity.  The questions I fielded ranged from describing the difference between Bluetooth and NFC to discussing the status of Apple further opening up their NFC core to third-party developers and how this will impact mobile payments.

Download the NFC-enabled e-Ticketing in Public Transport: Clearing the Route to Interoperability White Paper

Enabling Seamless Intermodal Smart and Mobile Ticketing Presentation

My individual presentation was called: Enabling seamless intermodal smart and mobile ticketing.  I borrowed many of the slides from recent presentations of the NFC Forum’s Transport SIG (thank you, Joerg, Jean-Luc and Cord!).  I started with an overview of mobile ticketing as it stands today and then spent the majority of the presentation discussing what is driving demand and how NFC provides the answer.  I underscored the work the NFC Forum has done on interoperability to improve the customer experience.  Most of the audience were in the transit industry, so it was a great opportunity to bring them up to date on NFC and what the NFC Forum is doing in the transport industry.

My slides from the presentation are located here.  Please let me know if you ever need slides for a presentation as I’d be happy to share NFC Forum slide content with you.

Transport PowerPoint for download: Transforming the NFC Public Transport Experience from Vision to Reality — The Necessities of NFC Forum Harmonization Efforts

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