Rub Myki the wrong way (the paint comes off!)

Fresh out of the box, a Myki reader is a yellow plastic thingy with a blue ‘touch here’ message on the front.

Must be new - a Myki reader without the touch pad printing scuffed off

But after only a few days in service the blue paint starts to wear off.

Myki reader onboard a tram, clock set to 10:44 am despite it being almost 3 pm in the afternoon

If you keep on rubbing, the Myki logo disappears.

'Gate out of use' message on the Myki gates at Melbourne Central, but the green arrow is still displayed

Leaving you with a plain yellow bit of plastic.

Myki FPD with the blue Myki branding completely worn off

Leaving station staff to scrawl a ‘Touch here’ message on the front, so first time passengers don’t try to touch on via the screen, Paywave / Paypass style.

'Touch here' scrawled on a worn out Myki reader

Or at the next station down the line, a simple ‘x’ in the middle.

Myki reader with the blue Myki logo rubbed off, replaced by a target drawn on with texta

So why are the Myki readers so vulnerable to everyday wear and tear? Part of the problem is the slow read speeds – if their card isn’t recognised instantly, less clued up passengers usually start rubbing their cards against the reader as hard as possible until it makes the beep (or catches fire).

The other cause is piss poor design – who thought it would be a good idea to cover a device that is frequently touched with just a thin layer of screenprinted paint! Event the designers of Melbourne’s Metcard readers had more of a clue fifteen years ago – they used a separate ‘hockey puck’ of yellow plastic insert into the main green body to indicate the smartcard target.

I put my MYKI branded card onto the thingy with the big MYKI text, don't I?

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