BART tests pay by phone tech

January 29, 2008 7:50:29 AM PST
Imagine using a cell phone to pay for your BART ticket, food and more. That technology is being tested out by BART today.

We've all been there, fumbling for bills or coins while in the BART ticket line. In the mean time the line behind you grows ever more impatient. Today, BART is trying a new way to get you through the turnstile, just by waving a cell phone.

A couple hundred participants have been given Sprint cell phones with near field technology. The software allows riders to download electronic payments up to $48 dollars. It's similar to the EZ Rider BART pass, but BART hopes this will be faster and more convenient - because just about everyone has a cell phone.

Eventually BART hopes the service will become so popular that other cell phone providers will jump on board. This is just a four-month trial period that begins today. After those four months, officials will make a decision on whether it will be made available to the general public.