GetTaxi, a mobile app that helps you arrange a cab, could live up to its name...
If it works successfully, its developers claim it could save Londoners a collective £100m on their taxi bills. Which is great for the customers, but it sounds like bad news for the taxi industry.
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Actually, it's not that bad, as it will only affect the traditional taxi account services. From my experience (as a one time cab operator) these taxi accounts are the most abused corporate expenses ever; one of the great unreported scandals of the NHS is the way its staff used taxi accounts unchecked.
GetTaxi launched its GPS based taxi ordering and dispatch service earlier this week, so that businesses can order black cabs online.
The personalised company web portal and mobile app will help them replace their accounts and get the same service at a fraction of the cost.
So the maker says, anyway.
Businesses spent £100 million last year with the major account services, most of which was wasted on admin fees and handling charges to pay for expensive over-resourced operations centres, argues Neal Fullman, CEO of GetTaxi.
"Our GPS technology avoids having a large staff base and call centres, so we are able to pass massive savings onto our business clients," says Fullman.
GetTaxi allows Smartphone users (iPhone, Android, Blackberry and Nokia) to order a taxi at the tap of a button on their mobile device or via a web interface.
The GetTaxi mobile app geographically locates the passenger via GPS and issues their request to the closest available taxis via GetTaxi's special driver units.
Once the booking has been accepted by the driver, a confirmation notification is sent to the passenger containing the driver's photo, personal and vehicle details, estimated time of arrival and a Google Map showing their real-time progress to the pickup address.