Tuesday, November 15, 2016

This Crazy Train's Presto Chronicles, Chapter 34: What has improved with the new website?

Special to This Crazy Train
By Frank E. Futor

How is everyone liking the renovated PRESTOcard website

I visit the site only to audit my transaction history and to export it to a PDF every month — something I never had to do with the old monthly passes and 10/2-ride tickets.  I’m not sure what the software development team at PRESTO were thinking when they “improved” the transaction reporting capabilities, but I think a whole bunch more work needs to be done — just to get back to what we had with the old website.  Let me demonstrate.

Once signed in, scroll down to the My PRESTO Card Activity section of the dashboard.

I don’t have transactions for November, nor October, but I did travel in September, so let’s select that month and click on Search.

Wait a minute!  I travelled more than that.  What does that View Full History link give us?

WTH?!  We’re back to where I started — sort of.  Let me select September, again.

WTF?!  Only 10 transactions are displayed, and then I have to scroll page by page.  You must be kidding!  Let’s just click on the Print button, produce the PDF and be done with this nonsense.


It gets worse …

I have to go back to the web page select page 2 and produce another PDF.  Shoot me now!

I demonstrated this “improved” website behaviour to a couple of senior developers I work with.  Both were left in stitches at PRESTO’s IT prowess.

Apparently, other users questioned this “enhancement”, too.  As of this writing, it appears the report can be generated for an entire month, but we are still forced to wade through the weak user interface to get there.  Who wrote that use case?

Are you still not seeing any systemic problems in PRESTO, Mr. Hollis?


Unknown said...

They should have just left it. At least you could view an entire month at one time.

Bicky said...

I just printed my reports for September and October. I got all the rides printed both on paper and as PDFs. I didn't have to go page by page. They must have heard you. ;)

What I would like to see is my card number attached to each monthly statement and loyalty summary. That used to show up on the old printouts. Now I don't have backup proof for the CRA.

Nora1968 said...

@Bicky: I hope they hear and fix the "no card number on the statement" issue or they will have MANY irate customers come March who are facing the possibility of being denied their 15% credit (which, considering I spend at least $3500/year, is not negligible) by the picky CRA!

Bicky said...

@Nora1968 - let's not forget the "no name on the annual transit usage report" issue. There's a spot for the name but GO Transit and Presto say the number is enough along with a photocopy of your card. Tell that to the CRA auditors who say "No, it's not good enough." Round and round we go.

I've also heard that the federal government is reviewing all tax credits and looking to chop some. This transit credit might disappear altogether.

Outburst said...

I find I have to make many more clicks to get where I want to be than I did before. That's not an improvement.
Sure, I can understand that not every update is going to have clear UI improvements visible to the user but it shouldn't be a step back from what we had either.

Anonymous said...

For every step of progress (GO claims) they seem to go 3 steps back...

Sylv said...

I lost my registered Presto card several years ago. Not knowing that I had to report it before getting a new card in order to have the balance moved over, I got a new card right away (I had to travel, you know). Anyways, that old card is STILL on my account (with a $50 balance), but I can't do anything with it. I can't delete the card from my account, I can's move the money to my current card, nothing!

Why can I manage that kind of information on any other platform (Amazon, PayPal, even my Timmy's card), but Presto forces me to keep the long lost card on my account. I always have to double check that I don't accidentally top up its balance at the end of the month.

Ed said...

Folks this is not Go but presto. Go has nothing whatsoever to do with that web site.

Bicky said...

@Ed: It all falls under the Metrolinx umbrella. Right hand doesn't know/care what the left hand is doing? At some point, an agency has to have the buck stop with them.

Ed said...

Bicky, Go and presto are two separate companies that do not tell each other what to do. Presto made the changes and MX had no say in it. Go does not make a dime from any transaction on that website nor do they have any access to their web server. Presto developers did all the work.

Go can ask for changes but presto is under no obligation to accommodate those requests. Just because they are cooperating doesn't mean MX has any appreciable authority. The TTC, Oakville, Burlington and Hamilton transit systems also use the presto system but have zero say in their business operations.

They know what each other is doing but that's it. Each business is separate.

Bicky said...

@Ed, that may be so, but when one calls for help, GO says "Talk to Presto." Call Presto, they say "Talk to GO." No help at all.

This is why customers hate both.

Ed said...

Which does nothing to address my point.

Again. MX does not have any influence at all with their website unless it affects GO operations. Updates usually don't.

I personally think there's far too much white space and not enough information on any screen. IMO several could be combined to make one easy to read screen. I think I liked the old format much better.