After introducing paperless ticketing facility on smart phones, the railways is now planning to introduce mobile ticketing on all phones. At present, the facility is available for Android and Windows phones.
The Centre for Railway Information Systems (CRIS) is designing a software through which commuters can call a number, follow instructions given by interactive voice response (IVR) system, choose from the given options and book tickets.
After the call is made, the system will generate a password that will be sent to caller.
They can then use the password at Automatic Ticket Vending Machines (ATVMs) at their originating stations to get a valid ticket.
“Non-smart phone users will have to get printed tickets from their originating station by using the password at the ATVMs. While this seems like a drawn out process, it will be quicker than queueing at the ticket counters,” said Uday Bobhate, general manager, CRIS.
The CRIS is planning to introduce this facility by March 2016.
Besides, the CRIS is also working on adding an option to the existing unreserved ticketing system (UTS) wherein suburban commuters can register complaints or give feedback and suggestions.
Central and Western Railway have sold around 1,000 paperless suburban tickets since their launch two days ago.
Also, since the launch, even the number of active registered users is going up by around 2,000 daily, said railway sources.
However, commuters have complained about system errors while accessing the UTS app. Some have said it is difficult to downloading the app and others complain that it is slow. Others have said the Global Positioning System (GPS) signals are not always accurate.
“I downloaded the mobile app and recharged online for Rs1,00 last week, but I still have not been able to book a ticket. All I am getting are errors,” said Shweta Desai, a Thane resident.
Confirming the difficulty faced by some users, Bobate said, “We are trying to introduce dynamic GPS accuracy so that commuters who are a little away from the station but within a two-kilometre radius do not face problems.”