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Grand River Transit
(Yesterday, 07:30 PM)bravado Wrote: EasyGO is a bad experience for the customer. Nobody seems to care about that.

Yes, EasyGo isn't the best experience. But let me ask two questions:
  • Did we know that the user experience would be bad when EasyGo was selected 10 years ago? Payment by phone etc did not exist back then.
  • Is EasyGo user experience impossible to improve, and thus the entire system must be scrapped?
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On a different topic, are the EV buses in service yet? I have seen one in testing, but have not spotted on in revenue service yet.
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(8 hours ago)tomh009 Wrote:
(Yesterday, 07:30 PM)bravado Wrote: EasyGO is a bad experience for the customer. Nobody seems to care about that.

Yes, EasyGo isn't the best experience. But let me ask two questions:
  • Did we know that the user experience would be bad when EasyGo was selected 10 years ago? Payment by phone etc did not exist back then.
  • Is EasyGo user experience impossible to improve, and thus the entire system must be scrapped?

To say that EasyGO is a "bad experience for the customer" implies there is one "the customer"...this is obviously not true. The experience varies by the customer, for some it is fine, for others it is mediocre, and for others, it is just bad. In some cases, the experience can be improved (we could throw more good dollars after bad supporting every feature that Presto enables, like supporting phone NFC or credit cards) for others, the experience inherently cannot be improved because the lack of payment card integration is the bad experience.

As for did we know 10 years ago? I think 10 years ago it was foreseeable that credit card support would come to transit, whether we knew it would come to Canada, that's a fair (or fare ha) question, but it isn't like we supported EasyGO because we wanted this feature and feared Presto would hold us back.

We also knew for 100% certainty that SOME users would want to use GO and GRT and that this would be an increasing use case and that the lack of integrated fare payment is a point of friction. This was something we absolutely knew right away would create a bad user experience for some users.

I would suggest that the best thing EasyGO could do now is support payment by Visa/MC and then you solve most (but not all) of the problems we have (you get fare payment integration for most users, pay by phone, etc. but we don't get a unified interface to view and collect all your spending). But I have no idea what excuses/problems will roadblock this, I suspect they will not be small in size or number.
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(8 hours ago)tomh009 Wrote: On a different topic, are the EV buses in service yet? I have seen one in testing, but have not spotted on in revenue service yet.

Well, that is awesome. I know a lot of people poo poo EV buses, and there are probably higher priorities, but most of those people have not stood at bus stops getting covered in diesel soot while getting deafened as a stinky diesel bus pulls out of the stop. EVs really make a meaningful improvement to bus rider comfort. I've been on a few EV buses in NL, but none operate in my city, which still uses very comfortable hybrid buses, but even then, the difference was noticeable.
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(7 hours ago)danbrotherston Wrote: I would suggest that the best thing EasyGO could do now is support payment by Visa/MC and then you solve most (but not all) of the problems we have (you get fare payment integration for most users, pay by phone, etc. but we don't get a unified interface to view and collect all your spending). But I have no idea what excuses/problems will roadblock this, I suspect they will not be small in size or number.

I wonder how hard it really would be to enable NFC payments by phone (essentially a virtual EasyGo card on your phone). Creating one for the Japanese stored-value card systems (PASMO and SUICA) or UK (Oyster) is quite simple, and it gives you a full charge/reload history on the phone. I believe that from a SUICA reader perspective the phone is just a card.

Not everyone wants or can use a smartphone, but those people would be able to continue using the existing EasyGo cards.
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(7 hours ago)tomh009 Wrote:
(7 hours ago)danbrotherston Wrote: I would suggest that the best thing EasyGO could do now is support payment by Visa/MC and then you solve most (but not all) of the problems we have (you get fare payment integration for most users, pay by phone, etc. but we don't get a unified interface to view and collect all your spending). But I have no idea what excuses/problems will roadblock this, I suspect they will not be small in size or number.

I wonder how hard it really would be to enable NFC payments by phone (essentially a virtual EasyGo card on your phone). Creating one for the Japanese stored-value card systems (PASMO and SUICA) or UK (Oyster) is quite simple, and it gives you a full charge/reload history on the phone. I believe that from a SUICA reader perspective the phone is just a card.

Not everyone wants or can use a smartphone, but those people would be able to continue using the existing EasyGo cards.

I am not saying that it would be hard, but it solves only a tiny fraction of the use cases that the other solves.

Yes, I can now pay with my phone, but I still need a separate app, money pool, etc.

If you enable visa payment, you get integrated fare payment with other systems (that also support visa+mc which right now includes Presto), you get visa+mc payment, you get reduced friction to occasional transit use (no keeping track of an extra card, and people who have never taken transit can just board a bus with their visa) and you also get phone payments because many (most even) bank cards support apple pay/google pay.

I really think going through the effort of supporting phone payment is just missing the point...supporting visa+mc is much more meaningful, and if EasyGO cannot do this, then we should clearly scrap EasyGO...I'd say supporting visa+mc payment is the only path forward where keeping EasyGO makes any sense.
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