Transport For London has announced today that's it's planning to introduce an 'e-money' element to the Oyster card. The idea being that Oyster Card holders will be able to use them to "buy newspapers and milk and pay for car parking".
So far most of the media has taken the "is this the end for cash" angle on this one, but there are some other questions which will undoubtedly arise. Like, if the Oyster card can track commuters isn't this 'innovation' just an extension of loyalty cards and RFID chips?
And what about the, erm 'usability issues' that the Oyster Card has experienced so far? Do you really want to argue with your local newsagent over whether or not you just paid for your copy of the Observer? Or, imagine you're hungover and desparate for a bowl of Crunchy Nut Cornflakes but the corner shop has a glitch in its Oyster machine? Nightmare.
Are we sounding like Daily Mail-style reactionary types here? We don't mean to, we just assume that maybe Transys would want to get the whole transport element of their business running smoothly before they move on to really important things like papers and milk.