Frankfurt's regional travel authority is to merge its NFC infrastructure with the national rail operator, creating an interoperable network for travelling across Germany with a tap of the phone. That's still some way off, but both Deutsche Bahn and Rhein-Main-Verkehrsverbund (the national and local operators respectively) …
NFC integration isn't just 'cool', it would be convenient.
I live in Oxford and regularly travel into London (a mere 45 minutes away on the train). If I don't wish to use cash, I will need to have two NFC cards (one, dubbed 'The Key' for Oxford buses, and then the Oyster card for London). And I still need to pay cash for my train ticket. It would be great if I could beep my PAYG Oyster at the start of my journey, and at the end, and have the cash taken off.
NFC integration, at least regionally, would make life a whole lot simpler. The London-centric south-east of England would do well to standardize all public transport on Oyster. Other regions where customers are less likely to have Oyster cards may wish to standardize on the nearest big city's transport NFC card.
45 minutes Oxford to London?
Er, which train is that then? The quickest I can see takes 54 minutes (the 1736).
Oyster PAYG on national rail incomplete journey
You have an incomplete journey, since we assume you traveled first class all the way up to john o groats, you owe us £900, please arrange to mortgage your house ASAP. Kind regards ATOC.
Chiltern Railways are a subsidiary of DB, as well as being the only UK rail operator run by railwaymen as opposed to beancounters - one of the reasons they deliver a far above average service (for the UK - it would be an execrable rip-off on most of the continent).
Mine's the anorak, ta.
"thetrainline.com will already sell you a ticket that exists as nothing more than an on-screen barcode for your phone."
So how many people are now walking round with ticket punch holes in there phone screen?
Beep Beep Beep
What happens when your battery runs out because you've been stuck on the train due to * on the track.
Flat batter =
no travel and or penalty fare?
Barcodes will only work for some, NFC works for all
Barcode readers at ticket gates cost significantly more and are slower, so bar-codes will only tend to be used in non gated environments. NFC on the other hand is both quick and secure (not like the Reg to fail to spot this issue with bar-codes) and will be the standard at some point. The only question is when.
@Guy 3: there's a national smart-card standard called ITSO (which the Key adheres to) that will ultimately be accepted everywhere in the UK including TfL as an alternative to Oyster. An NFC phone will be able to store both smart-cards on its SIM and therefore solve your problem.
Lost phone/dead battery = pay cash to get home.