e-Transit: Electronic Business Strategies for Public Transportation, Volume 2, Application Service Provider Implementation Guidelines

Document Type


Publication Date


Subject Area

land use - planning, economics - benefits, mode - bus


Application service providers, Business practices, Economic benefits, Electronic business strategies, Guidelines, Implementation, Public transit, Risk assessment, Strategic planning, Thin client computing


This report presents the results of an investigation into the use of application service providers (ASPs) and thin client computing technologies by transit agencies. The characteristics and market position of ASPs were investigated, and the strengths and weaknesses of this computing service model were identified. A similar investigation of thin client computing was conducted. A survey of transit agencies was conducted to assess the penetration of the ASP service delivery model and thin client computing into the transit industry and to identify operational and financial benefits that accrue to agencies using ASPs and thin clients. The findings of the study show a viable model for ASP computing service delivery that constitutes an alternative to be considered when seeking new or replacement computing services. However, the findings also show that the ASP alternative has significant associated risks that must be mitigated through the exercise of due diligence when selecting an ASP and in contracting for ASP services. Guidelines for ASP selection and for managing the ongoing service relationship with an ASP are provided. The study found that thin client computing is a well-established, mainstream computing model that provides clear economic benefits when implemented in targeted, vertical applications.


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