News and resources on payments systems, innovations and initiatives worldwide.
Sydney could use facial recognition for public transport payments

Sydney could use facial recognition for public transport payments

Sydney's commuters could soon ditch their contactless cards and pay for journeys with their faces, predicts the New South Wales transport minister.

While cities around the world upgrade their systems to let travellers pay for their bus and subway trips with cards and mobile phones, Andrew Constance is already looking to go further.

In a speech, reported by IT News, the minister says that in the "not too distant future" his department will "use facial recognition technology to scan customers who’ve ‘opted in’ and linked their Opal account," adding: "No more gate barriers - just a smooth journey."

The technology is already being used by some retailers, most notably Amazon, which has cashierless stores that use cameras to record what people buy and takes the money automatically.

With facial recognition technology seemingly just around the corner for Sydney's public transport, the likes of Apple Pay and Google Pay, which are not currently compatible with the Opal system, could be skipped over.

Comments: (1)

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 16 July, 2019, 00:27Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

The last paragraph is not strictly true.  Apple Pay and Google Pay don't support Opal as a discrete pass (per Melbourne's Myki in Google Pay), but the Sydney transport network can be accessed using all of the major Pay wallets using the standard Visa and Mastercard payment cards .