What happened: The Shenzhen Municipal Taxation Bureau and Tencent have teamed up to develop a solution for recording subway ride invoices to the blockchain. After each ride, commuters can see their Shenzhen Metro passenger code on WeChat’s payment voucher page. This system will build on top of Shenzhen’s previously released WeChat-based blockchain invoice initiative, with an expected 170,000 subway invoices issued daily following the launch.
Why it’s important: China’s railways have become a useful test bed for new technologies, with facial recognition and 5G networks recently making their way into stations in multiple cities. Other countries have followed suit, with Argentina’s state public transport card now accepting bitcoin top-ups and the UK’s Go-Ahead Group introducing a blockchain-based rewards system for rail travelers. These practical, real world implementations show off blockchain’s increasing maturity as a technology that isn’t just about cryptocurrency.