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IT-Trans 2016. Link’s presence raises an unprecedented international interest

Link and OTLIS were the only representatives of the HCE solution at the international fair

From the 1st to the 3rd March, another edition of the highly thought of event organized by the International Association of Public Transport (UITP, French for L’Union Internationale des Transports Publics) took place at the Karlsruhe Trade Fair Centre, in Germany: the IT-Trans. As usual, this event was dedicated to the latest IT solutions in the area of public transport. Link and OTLIS’s stand was among the 210 stands representing Europe’s largest technology suppliers. Link and OTLIS also presented one of the ten conferences that fair visitors were able to attend.

At the event, Link partnering with OTLIS – Transport Operators in the Lisbon Region aimed at presenting the innovative HCE (Host Card Emulation) Mobile Ticketing solution upon which the App VIVA mobile was built and which will be available in Portugal later this year. The two companies would end up indisputably proving their international interest, as they were the only representatives of an HCE solution in the whole fair. Given the difficulty of NFC (Near Field Communication) technology implementation, most mobile ticketing solution providers have turned to QR Code (Quick Response Code) or to BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy), enabling both Link and OTLIS to stand out with this differentiated internationally new offer carved out with the Portuguese label.

In fact, the demos made in smartphone and smartwatch environments were welcomed with great interest and enthusiasm by about 60 companies from different countries. The main question was about the business model being implemented and many partnership ideas for developing integrated mobile solutions were proposed by participating entities. The event brought strong expectations concerning the future expansion of this solution to other systems worldwide.

The results were extremely encouraging, and this was greatly achieved by OTLIS visibility and credibility as a Complementary Group of Companies (CGC) of Portuguese transport currently with 26 participating operators. In addition to some well-known customers – in Switzerland, Sweden, Poland, Israel and Portugal – seventeen companies from all over the world have shown interest in Link and OTLIS’s solution. From Europe, the interested companies were from Belgium, Switzerland, Italy and Germany. But some transport operators from Israel, Turkey, Iran, Bolivia, India and Hong Kong also wanted to learn more, exchange contacts and, in some cases, asked for the solution to be presented to the entire board of their companies.

And besides hugely increasing the range of potential customers, Link was able to draw the attention of some integrators, which, once a partnership is established for that purpose, may support the implementation of the solution on international markets. In total, five European companies of this type have shown interest in working with the HCE Mobile Ticketing solution developed by Link and OTLIS, namely companies from Germany, Hungary, Switzerland and Greece.

Lisbon is already known as having one of the most innovative systems worldwide for contactless interoperable ticketing. Following the presentation of the App VIVA Mobile at this event – which was repeatedly praised for being such an innovative initiative – Portugal has once more been seen as a worldwide success story in the contactless ticketing scenario.

 

About App VIVA mobile

Based on NFC technology and on the Android system’s HCE function, the newly App VIVA mobile, being launched this year in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, will be the media for occasional transport tickets fully dematerialized. It will be a virtual card with a use similar to VIVA Viagem cards – to validate the ticket the user simply approaches the mobile phone to the validator.

The mobile App will also create a user interface, offering an integrated set of complementary services, such as buying and loading transport tickets, and viewing balances and transactions on the mobile phone.

The App, based on API VIVA, has a combined operation with the OTLIS VIVA Portal. Thus, it can be used throughout the VIVA System, in the interoperable contactless ticketing network of the transport and mobility operators of the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, both the Western Region and Tagus Valley plus the city of Coimbra, as well as other cities with contactless systems.