Snapper to launch mobile payments for parking

Mobile payment service to be launched in collaboration with Wellington City Council

Snapper Services will launch mobile payments for parking meters in Wellington next month.

The service will initially be funded by Wellington City Council in a public-private partnership, Snapper CEO Miki Szikszai says.

Szikszai announced the service at the Mobile Payments and NFC (near field communications) Forum in Auckland yesterday.

He says each transaction will cost the user 25 cents; half what it currently costs to pay for on-street parking using a credit card. The money collected will go towards paying for the Snapper-enabled parking meters.

Snapper has worked with Integrated Technology Solutions Limited (ITSL) and DPS to build the meters and payment infrastructure.

Szikszai says he wants to work with Auckland Council on providing mobile payments for parking meters in Auckland, however he points out that Snapper – which is owned by Infratil – was ousted from the Auckland’s integrated ticketing contract last year in a dispute which is ongoing.

Szikszai also demonstrated a NFC smart poster, which enables users to download the Snapper application onto their smartphone simply by swiping it across the Snapper logo on the poster. Users need to ensure their phones are enabled with NFC (that excludes iPhone users).

During his presentation Szikszai told the audience of bankers, telcos and retailers that it was important to build an ecosystem for mobile payments and to have services ready to go when launching a payment solution. He pointed out that around the world there are currently 70 NFC trials underway, which meant millions of dollars could potentially be wasted if the solutions didn’t deliver what customers wanted. “Hope is not a strategy for mobile payments,” he says.

When asked if he would use the Trusted Services Manager that is being built in collaboration with Paymark, Vodafone, Telecom and 2degrees, Szikszai said he would need to look at the cost structure before committing to it.

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