UITP Summit 9-12 June
FARA is a proud partner of the UITP Global Public Transport Summit 2019, 9-12 June in Stockholm. Meet us at stand B1030 to learn more about our latest projects and solutions or contact us to set up a meeting. We look forward to seeing you there!
FARA’s Annual Customer Conference
Save the Date for the FARA Customer Conference 2019! The conference will take place from 10-11 September in Trondheim, Norway. This year we have the pleasure of welcoming new customers to the FARA community: Länstrafiken Kronoberg, Länstrafiken Halland, Länstrafiken Jönköping and Unibuss.
In 2018, FARA won a large contract to deliver a smartphone app with a new sales solution to four counties in southern Sweden: Halland, Jönköping, Kronoberg and Kalmar. In addition to the app, we will provide a complete back-end that is integrated with BoBcat.
Each of the four customers will have their own version of the app. It will display each county’s own design, yet will allow ticket purchases across all four counties. In addition to offering single and period ticket purchase, the app provides passengers with real-time information and a complete travel planner that includes booking on-call transportation. After these basic functions have been launched, our work will continue with a number of exciting features for the app, including account-based travel products. The methodology FARA uses is design-driven innovation, which involves many iterations with the customer, and where the end-user is absolutely central to the development of the product.
When AtB opens new routes in Trondheim in August, three of the lines will be served by 24m long “metro buses”. The 100-150 stops on these lines will be equipped with a self-service validator supplied by FARA. This validator is based on our FLV+, and is designed to function while mounted outdoors at a stop. The units will handle validation, as well as updates of travel cards, via an action list, and all operations are performed with a single connection to FARA’s back-end system. We are considering certifying the platform validator for EMV, which would enable ticket sales.
FLV+ EMV Level 2 Certification
When we developed the new FLV+ validator, we already had plans for an upgrade to enable credit card reading. Some time ago, FARA started this development and during the fourth quarter we expect to present our customers a possible upgrade of FLV+. EMV Level 2 means that the device has hardware and software certified according to EMVco’s requirements for handling of contactless cards from Visa and Mastercard. In addition to the great demand for this from abroad, we see FARA initially using this technology to offer our Scandinavian customers “Pay-as-you-go”. This is functionality similar to what we find in London, where contactless credit cards are used directly at the validator, and debited in line with period price caps.
The Future of Ticketing
When we started working on the new app for Sydlänen in Sweden, we also started to develop an upgrade to both our ticketing back-end and the ticketing application in vehicles. New ticketing applications, such as the smartphone app, sales office (POS) and ticket machine will be oriented towards the new back-end system we develop in this project. In both Sweden and Norway there are impending national ticketing solutions: BoBcat and Entur, respectively. They allow tomorrow’s ticketing systems to distinguish between sales applications and their associated administrative back-end systems, on the one hand, and cloud-based data sources and service-based interfaces for sales and validation on the other. This ensures more interoperability and wider distribution of collective travel products. FARA takes a positive view of this development, and work on new solutions has started. In the future we will host discussion meetings with you, our customers, to ensure that what we address the needs that you identify.
Replacement for BP50
FARA will launch a new unit as a substitute for BP50 (portable ticketing and inspection), which is at its “end of Life”. This new unit will also be included in a solution that can be installed in smaller vehicles. We are in negotiations with the supplier, and some work remains with respect to quality assurance for the device. We expect to come back to you with specifics and offers before Easter.
New FARA Bus Stop Display Unit
FARA is working with a large European supplier of public displays who have more than 10.000 installations. The main delivery to AtB consists of both 4-line double-sided LED displays and 32” TFT screens which will be produced according to the project specifications. The units are designed according to EN60529 (IP65), and are built to handle tough Nordic weather, with salt water and great variations in humidity and temperature. The surface is treated with scratch and graffiti resistant powder coating for long durability. The screen is designed to withstand vandalism and is protected by laminated and hardened UV protection glass. The first units will be delivered to FARA during April for testing and verification.
In addition to Sydlänen, we have two exciting projects with AtB and UniBuss we want to share with you.
As previously announced, FARA has signed a contract with AtB for the delivery of a new Real-Time Information (RTI) system in Trøndelag County, Norway. The project started with analysis and development work in September. FARA is now working with the bus manufactures to verify and test the ITXPT interfaces, and make necessary preparations before the buses are delivered later in the spring. When the system is put into operation it will be running in 290 buses and at 321 bus stops.
FARA is delivering parts of the Bus-as-a-service with the ITXPT framework to UniBuss’ 40 electric buses. The delivery includes real-time information, infotainment, passenger counting and hardware for Ruter’s ticketing solution.
We are making some organizational changes in order to strengthen support and follow-up of our customers, as well as to be more proactive when we see that there can be challenges in operations. This includes direct contact, and being better at keeping track of the solutions each individual customer uses (servers, buses are updated, etc.). We will soon get in touch with each customer with more information.