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Showing posts from 2019

FastTAG woes on Mumbai Pune Expressway

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Since December 1, 2017, it has been made mandatory for all vehicles sold in India to have a FASTag fitted on the windscreen, either by the manufacturer, or an authorized dealership at the time of sale.
The FASTag is a simple to use, rechargeable tag which enables automatic deduction of tolls at toll plazas across the country. The Tag employs RFID technology and is linked to a prepaid account to facilitate recharge. You can link your FASTag to your PayTM, ICICI or HDFC bank account, but will eventually be bank neutral.
The FASTag is being promoted actively in India by multiple agencies including NHAI (National Highways Authority of India) and the Indian Highways Management company. Currently it is claimed that FASTag is operational at 400 toll plazas in state and national highways. In a bid to increase adoption, the NHAI recently made FASTags available through petrol pumps.
There are obviously multiple benefits of FASTag for a motorist – a faster, more convenient way to pay toll. For the …

When Tech gets counter productive - automated calls

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A couple of days ago, I was travelling with a client when he was disturbed by repeated incoming calls from a landline, flashing on his mobile screen. Excusing himself, he picked up the call and after listening for just 3 to 4 seconds, hung up quickly with an expletive (which was unlike him). ‘Its one of those scam automated calls to pay some bill’, he told me, adding ‘they have become such a pain in the neck, I get these calls all the time, now I am going to block this number’, he told me, before resuming our conversation.
Two things struck me about the incident. First of all, he did not even hang on the line long enough to know who was calling him. Secondly, he knew that it was for bill payment (meaning it was a legitimate call by a company that had permission to use his registered phone number), yet he referred to it as a ‘scam call’. Which is not very good for the customer satisfaction rating or the image of the company making these calls. Thinking back, like me, and this client, I a…