Transport companies operate vehicles for public transport such as buses, trams, and subways on behalf of municipal administrations. As municipal companies, transport companies are obligated to publicly tender for supplies and services above a certain order volume. Procuring IT systems such as passenger information and payment systems on an IP basis for public transport also requires a public tender. Read on to learn why it may be beneficial for transport companies to conduct a separate tender for Ethernet switches and what advantages are associated with it.
Efficient communication networks and smooth data exchange are essential for the work of transport companies nowadays. To ensure smooth operation and maintain the attractiveness of public transport, it is crucial for transport companies to rely on robust and reliable IP networks. But how do you choose the right network? The answer lies in a separate tender.
Often, the network infrastructure is “co-procured” by transport companies as part of a tender for video surveillance, ITCS, or passenger information systems. However, the “one-stop-shop” approach has the disadvantage that transport companies may not necessarily receive the best solution for their network requirements and may become dependent on the system provider.
>> Click here to learn what Ethernet switches are used for and why you need them.
Advantages of a Separate Tender for Ethernet Switches
- Tailored solutions: Each transport company has different requirements for its communication networks. A separate tender allows companies to precisely define and tender their specific requirements.
- Promoting competition and lowering costs: A public tender promotes competition and results in offers from various providers. This means that transport companies have a greater choice of offers and solutions, which can ultimately lead to a better cost-benefit ratio.
- Future-proofing: A separate tender for Ethernet switches and IP networks can help transport companies ensure that they choose a future-proof technology. By considering factors such as scalability, interoperability, and flexibility, a transport company can ensure that the chosen network will also meet future requirements.
- Knowledge transfer: Transport companies receive first-hand information and expertise. Employees are trained and informed about advancements.
- Transport company as a system integrator: Procuring and integrating components and systems is the responsibility of transport companies. This means that they make all decisions in the interest of the transport company. This approach offers maximum flexibility and system sovereignty.
The advantages of a separate tender for Ethernet switches are evident. But why don’t all transport companies go down this path? The reasons for this are diverse. Depending on the size and complexity of the operation, there is often a lack of necessary expertise or financial resources. Transport companies must increasingly deal with new technologies and embed them in the company to operate effectively. Here, the recruitment and training of experts who deal comprehensively with the topic of “digitalization” and acquire expertise play a central role. Standardization can help here, as transport companies can base tenders on industry standards.
Importance of standardizing technology for transport companies
Public transport companies place great emphasis on technology standardization when searching for suitable Ethernet switches. By using industry-recognized standards for Ethernet switches and IP networks, public transport companies can ensure that the devices and systems they choose are compatible with other systems and networks.
Standardization also provides public transport companies with more options and the freedom to choose between different vendors and solutions. By using standards, public transport companies can ensure that they are not tied to a single vendor and can switch to another vendor if necessary. Implementing standards can also help public transport companies set up their systems faster and more efficiently.
Standardization can also increase competition, which can lower costs.
Standards for IP-based Systems in Public Transport
Currently, there are two standards for IP-based systems for public transport: the IBIS-IP standard (VDV301), launched by the Association of German Transport Companies VDV, and the ITxPT standard, which emerged from a European research project.
The IBIS-IP standard is an industry-recognized standard for communication in public transport. It enables efficient and reliable communication between different systems in buses and trains. The standard is constantly evolving through VDV301 writings. You can find all releases here.
The ITxPT standard (Intelligent Transport Systems for Public Transport) is an international standard for intelligent transport systems in public transport. It includes standards for communication between different systems, as well as for data security, interoperability, and connectivity of transport systems. Learn more at www.itxpt.org and https://wiki.itxpt.org.
By using IBIS-IP and ITxPT, public transport companies can ensure that their systems and networks are compatible with other systems and networks in the industry. This allows for a greater selection of technologies from different vendors and more flexibility in designing their systems.
Conclusion: The Individual Case Decides
In summary, the decision of whether a public transport company will source everything from one vendor or become a system integrator depends on various factors. Factors such as company size, expertise, personnel, and financial structures play an important role. However, public transport companies, as operators and owners of public transport vehicles and IT systems, are best able to represent and understand their interests and needs. Thus, it is probably a matter of time before public transport companies grow into the role of system integrators.
The best way to achieve this is through tenders that promote competition and reduce costs. This applies to Ethernet switches and network infrastructure as well as other components and systems necessary for effective and passenger-friendly operations. Industry standards such as IBIS-IP or ITxPT can help ensure interoperability and flexibility. Ultimately, the individual case will decide which path is best for the public transport company.
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