Transport firms bet on mobile ticketing

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Paying for transport by mobile phone will hit the mainstream within three years, according to new research..

Mobile analyst firm Juniper Research predicted 1.8 billion mobile ticketing transactions a year worldwide by 2011, up from 37 million in 2007.

The Far East and China are expected to be the biggest adopters, making up nearly three quarters of the total number of transactions worldwide.

Air and rail travel will see the biggest take-up, with rail in particular highlighted as an early success story in Western Europe, North America, the Far East and China.

Juniper's research attributes this adoption to lower operating costs for operators, along with shorter queuing times and greater convenience for customers.

The analyst firm believes that mobile boarding passes, for example, could save airlines around US$500 million a year.

However, the report warns of a number of major hurdles that need to be overcome before mobile phones can act as a principal storage medium for tickets and coupons.

Juniper said that issues around the delivery and redemption of mobile barcodes could heavily impede the uptake of mobile ticketing.
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