OTI in Russia: Getting started with Mir in surface transport

Non-cash payments in self-service systems

With non-cash payments gaining traction today in the business segments where low-value payments and micro-transactions are commonly used, the cashless payment technology plays an increasingly important role, in particular, in self-service systems. This refers to payment and information kiosks, vending machines, gas stations, car wash control systems, self-service banking devices, electric vehicle charging stations, as well as ticketing systems in public transport.

Common specifics inherent to each of the above areas should be taken into account when automatic non-cash payment solutions are implemented. In this article we shall discuss key principles that seem to be necessary today insofar it concerns the effective operation and quick adaptation of such solutions to the market’s ever-changing conditions and requirements.

Payment security

An option to use a bank card or mobile application for payments through automated self-service devices is surely offering important convenience and significant competitive advantages. Implementation of such projects, however, requires an integrated security system to be developed in order to guarantee that unauthorized access to the users’ card data will never occur.


As is known, EMV is a global standard heightening the level of card transaction security, and its support is a mandatory requirement for the implementation of any payment solution.


Support of the NFC technology ensures customer acquisition on a mass scale, including the users of mobile wallets (Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, Huawei Pay, etc.). According to statistics from Newzoo, a leading provider of games and e-sports analytics, with a total of 95.37 million smartphone users as of September 2019, Russia ranked 5th in the list after China, India, the United States and Brazil. Thus, the smartphone penetration rate in the country reached 66.3%. At the same time, the Russian market shows its potential for further growth and record levels of popularity of such payment services.

Comprehensive integration

The track record of implementing automated payment solutions such as self-service kiosks, transport ticket validators or vending machines, proves that any integration involves a wide variety of different technologies and project participants, including hardware suppliers, software developers, systems integrators and providers of services, payment gateways and acquiring services. The best option is to integrate individual elements into an out-of-the-box single solution. It is this approach that eventually guarantees seamless integration and meets as far as possible the unique business needs of each specific market segment.

Remote software updating

Timely upgraded control systems allow you to remotely update and configure a payment device or vending machine, making it possible to significantly reduce the solution maintenance costs – in particular, due to minimizing the number of on-site technician visits for the purpose of solution maintenance routine.

Quality as a guarantee of the longest possible solution life cycle

The requirements for enhanced durability of the self-service terminal equipment are determined by the specifics of its location and operation conditions. Payment terminals and readers should be wear-resistant, vandal- and tamper-proof, and withstand direct impact of weather conditions (humidity, temperature).

OTI technologies and products

It is these principles that guide On Track Innovations (OTI Global), a pioneer and leading developer of non-cash payment products and solutions, including NFC-enabled ones.

Field-proven and highly effective, OTI products and systems are built on plenty of know-how and rich expertise of the company, which is based on an extensive intellectual property portfolio that includes more than 35 patents registered worldwide. They include a pioneer contactless operating system, the first-ever contactless dual smart card – The Combi Card (preISO1444-3), the first FeliCa certification for contactless readers outside Japan, RFID technology acquired by Samsung.

OTI used to work closely with Mastercard to introduce NFC technology in the payment industry. NFC-readers and NFC-enabled integrated payment solutions have been installed and operating successfully in banks, vending machines, self-service kiosks, car washes, in public transport ticketing systems and fuel-supply businesses.

ASEC S.A. (OTI Europa ASEC) is a regional branch of OTI headquartered in Cracow (Poland). Since 2018, OTI Europa has been responsible for the OTI business expansion in Europe, Russia and CIS countries. In the Polish market, we also develop, design and supply innovative cashless ticketing products and solutions for public transport. The system includes attended and unattended POS, contactless readers (NFC), telemetry control, ticket vending machines and terminals.

Developing cashless payments in the vending and transport areas, OTI became a member of the European Vending and Coffee Services Association (EVA) in 2019 and joined Visa Ready, a partner program committed to ensuring that the next generation of third-party payment solutions meets Visa’s security standards and specifications.

In 2018, OTI qualified Russia as one of the three largest strategic markets (along with the USA and Japan markets already tapped). As part of the initiative aimed at developing a customized product for the Russian region, OTI promptly certified contactless readers UNO-6 (Saturn 6700) and UNO-8 (Saturn 8700) for Mir cards of the Russian national payment system. The card readers are included in the official register published on the website of NSPK (Mir Payment System Operator). One of the first projects implemented by OTI on the Russian market was a transit project launched by the Service Center Transtelematica (TTM) in order to modernize the maintenance routine for the automated fare collection system in public transport. OTI has developed a new version of the UNO-6 (Saturn 6700) contactless reader to be used in an element of the TSC system. Meeting the requirements of the Russian market (Mir card acceptance certificate issued by NSPK), the device also complies with the latest requirements of international payment associations (Visa, in particular) to the fare collection systems in transit facilities. Currently, tens of thousands of contactless OTI devices are used in validators in the surface transport of Mosgortrans (Moscow public transport authority) – the largest surface public transport operator in Europe.

President of the Management Board and Managing Director of OTI Europa ASEC Agnieszka Światły commented to say: “The strategy we adopted three years ago to include Russia in the OTI’s list of business development priority regions proved the accuracy of our forecasts. The Russian market is developing at an unbelievable pace and is open to new solutions. OTI closely monitors global trends in non-cash card payment solutions and payment security. It seems to me that there comes a perfect point of time for our expertise to be applied and the innovative self-service solutions introduced.”

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