Licensed taxis have been fitted out with the latest in-cab payments technology which enables passengers to pay securely by card, and at the same time, enjoy a unique Passenger Information Monitor (PIM) which broadcasts an array of media content and news via the Verifone Digital Network (VNET). The payment system is a welcome addition to London’s taxi users. It is exclusively for the licensed taxi trade, differentiating the transportation offering from minicabs, and gives fare-paying passengers a host of benefits, all based around a cashless journey.
- New card payment technology and media system
- Taxis to incorporate new system for London
- System connected securely across mobile network through Wireless Logic and Vodafone
The technology behind Verifone’s payment and media system utilises state-of-the-art mobile connectivity to ensure secure, rapid data transfer with exceptional resilience. To achieve this, Verifone looked to a number of providers to satisfy key requirements including Fixed IP assigned to each SIM, fully managed subnet and VPNs and a Service Level Agreement to guarantee uptime and service support. Exploring the various network opportunities, Jon Wheeler, Programme Manager for Verifone Software Solutions & Services explained that identifying a suitable connectivity partner was not an easy task, “Through our experience in the US, a key trait required in working with a suitable partner was flexibility. We found on countless occasions that networks could fulfill elements of the brief, but not everything. SLAs, resilience and flexibility on developing VPNs from one provider resulted in a strategic change of direction. From potentially going direct to a network, we considered the intermediate route by partnering with an independent managed services provider on an agreed network.”
Taking negotiations to the next stage, Verifone commenced dialogue with a number of connectivity intermediaries including Europe’s leading aggregator, Wireless Logic. Philip Cole, Sales and Marketing Director for Wireless Logic continues, “Having studied the brief, we developed a joint bid with partner Vodafone, overlaying a number of value-added bolt-ons to deliver a totally tailored solution. We worked hard to build a solution that incorporated the resilience of Vodafone, whilst acknowledging that uptime of coverage is simply mission critical. Our discussions required Wireless Logic to demonstrate how the solution would work when rolling out across the capital, with a comprehensive risk analysis across a number of specific scenarios. A series of trials subsequently took place with very pleasing results.”
Appointing Wireless Logic and their preferred network Vodafone, the PIM and payment units are now being fitted to London’s taxis. Each system will take secure payments via card, where evidence already shows increased customer loyalty with ease of use and safety high on the list of user benefits – for both taxi drivers and their customers.
“The Fixed IP and subnet VPNs are giving Verifone the highest levels of secure data passage for payment,” explains Philip Cole. “Our data centre is wired directly to Verifone with the highest security protocol inherent across the entire system. But as importantly, the mobile data is not just about payment. The Verifone Digital Network will be able to broadcast news and content directly to each passenger. Each taxi will receive frequent daily content updates, with the on-board management system pushing the content to the PIM. We have developed a number of bespoke tariffs working closely with Vodafone to account for multiple GB of data likely to be used on a month by month basis.”
For Verifone, partnering with Wireless Logic has seen the value-added services become intrinsic to the success of the deal. Jon Wheeler concludes: “Two key bolt-ons are proving important at this stage of the programme’s roll out. We are pleased with the SIM provisioning system where we can control the provisioning of new SIMs at point of installation. And Wireless Logic’s NetFlow gives us a real-time view of data usage on an individual SIM basis. This is critically important when working with such high levels of data movement. With this monitoring, we can make sure costs are firmly controlled.”