It is working with VTB Bank, Google and Mastercard to undertake final stage of large-scale testing of the card to pay for public transport in the Russian capital.
The Moscow Metro in partnership with VTB Bank, Google and Mastercard has begun final stage testing of its virtual ‘Troika’ card as a means of paying for public transit in Moscow. Introduction of large-scale testing is intended to evaluate its functionality from a passenger perspective.
Owners of Android mobile devices and the Google Pay app downloaded will be the first to evaluate the advantages of the new product. During the trial, passengers will be able to purchase a single ticket with a 30-day travel limit. Ticket purchase is available in a special version of the Moscow Metro mobile application.
Riders can use the virtual Troika in the city subway, and on buses, trams, electric buses, Moscow Central Diameters (MCD) train services and the Moscow Central Circle (MCC) rail line.
“More and more people do not carry plastic cards with them, so we decided to launch a virtual Troika using smartphones. I invite everyone who wants to test a new opportunity [to] become the very first owners of virtual Troikas in Moscow,” said Maxim Liksutov, deputy mayor of Moscow, and head of the City Department of Transport and Road Infrastructure Development.
“We are looking to the future and are expecting modern Muscovites who love technology and Moscow transport [to sign up].”
“I invite everyone who wants to test a new opportunity to become the very first owners of virtual Troikas in Moscow”
Project participants will be able purchase travel tickets using a special version of the Moscow Metro mobile application, with VTB Bank automatically issuing and uploading the card to the mobile device wallet.
Riders with downloaded Mastercard can just present their smartphone with screen turned on to the turnstile or validator without having to unlock it.
“The convenience of travel for a passenger is one of the main indicators of comfort in public transport,” added Vadim Izotov, senior vice president of VTB Bank.
“This is what we were guided by when introducing this innovative payment service. By launching the Troika virtual card for testing, Moscow has once again demonstrated its leadership in the development of fare payment systems among other world capitals.”
In a separate announcement, Moscow Metro has also introduced a fare payment system using facial recognition.
Face Pay will be piloted on Line 4 of the city’s subway system with an initial focus group of 1,000 citizens which will grow as the trial extends to other lines.
To be involved in the project, passengers need to apply on the operator’s website where they will be required to upload a selfie for biometric enrolment.
Focus group members will be able to pass through turnstile gates equipped with a camera – indicated by special black floor stickers – and transfer to MCC and MCD free of charge.
“We are starting the most important stage of the Face Pay testing – the one with passengers. Metro employees already use this service and have made more than one million successful passes. We will test this technology gradually, from line to line,” said Maxim Liksutov, deputy mayor for transport.