Taxis have been used as the main means of public transport for those who enjoy their personal space while on the road. They manage to access areas that public buses cannot since it is not in their route jurisdiction. There are cities where public buses are only allowed to operate up to a certain area, from where the passengers are required to sort themselves out. This is where some will either walk the remaining distance or ask for the services of a taxi. With better road networks thanks to the building of infrastructure, the routes were expanded, but people still require driver services from taxi drivers.
Technology has advanced and can be termed as a key factor that has led to the evolution of man into the modern age. Machines were built to make life easier, but the technology was built to make life comfortable. We’re able to access anything with the touch of a button. If it is shopping, it can be done online and the retail store will send the package to us via delivery service companies. Food can be ordered online instead of going to make long queues at fast-food restaurants. The food can either be picked once done, or delivered to your doorstep.
Entertainment has also been brought to the comfort of your home. The days when people would line up to go and watch a movie in the cinema or pay to go watch a play are gone. All this can be accessed from home as long as you have your device and a good internet connection.
The taxi driving business has suffered the effects caused by the advancement of technology. There have been apps like Uber and Lyft which allow a customer to order for a driver online. The driver is equipped with a device that allows him to receive these requests and can see where the request came from using Google Maps. They can find their way to where the customer is to pick them up and begin their trip. This has eliminated the struggle of having to walk in circles under the scorching sun looking for a taxi. People tried to overcome this before apps by having the numbers of these drivers on their phones, especially if they were regular customers. Not everyone can afford this level of luxury, prompting someone to think of an app that could bridge this gap.
These apps have not only made it easier for customers and drivers to reach each other faster but allowed for fair play when it comes to charging a fare. Taxis would often take advantage of pricing since there was no standard to be followed. During rush hours, they’d hike their prices, making it cost double than it normally would, or the slightest drop of rain would warrant them to increase their charges. Uber and Lyft apps have developed an algorithm that the app used to estimate your fare, depending on how far you’re going. The prices may change due to demand, but not as much as when taxi drivers would double their prices. Fares are paid directly to the drivers through the app, increasing customer confidence. The prices are well regulated, not too costly for the customer, and not too little for the drivers, leaving a percentage for the company as well.
With the establishment of these apps and the availability of smartphones, the necessity of ordering for taxis has reduced. Many tax drivers joined this move early by joining the Uber and Lyft companies. Some have registered their vehicles in multiple companies, allowing them to access customers who use any of the apps. An advantage of these apps as well is that they will not connect you with a car that already has another client. In certain developing countries, there are still certain people that use taxis since they may not have the luxury of affording a smartphone. Their use in cities has, however, reduced, rendering them useless. Those that are still operating have loyal customers who still support their business.
The use of apps has opened a world of opportunities since you can easily get registered as a driver. All you have to do is download it and register as a driver. This allows for anyone interested in turning their personal vehicle into a part-time Uber to do so.