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Smart phones, dumb scanners

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 by Caleb Pritchard

Despite good ridership reports on the Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s two MetroRapid lines, all is not well on its No. 801 and No. 803 buses. Riders who use the smart phone app to purchase tickets have probably noticed that the in-bus scanners don’t always work as they should, forcing the passengers to show their ticket to the driver, a mild affront to the benefit of MetroRapid’s all-door boarding. On Friday, the agency responded to an Austin Monitor inquiry about the scanners and acknowledged that something is amiss. According to spokeswoman Mariette Hummel, the phone scanner problem “is an issue that Capital Metro is and has been working on for a few weeks. When customers purchase a ticket, it can take up to 30 to 45 minutes for that ticket to be seen as valid by the validators. So, customers that have weekly or monthly tickets should not have an issue after their first usage of purchased tickets. Our contractor, Bytemark, is currently testing the repair, and if all goes well with testing, they should have the fixed version delivered to us after that, which is projected to be next week.”

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