The Process of Building a Taxi App like Uber, Gett, or Lyft
The process of technological modernization now concerns all the spheres of human life: from apps for house cleaning to full-fledged factory machines. All these things were created to facilitate a human being. Nowadays it’s impossible to imagine our life without smartphones, and this is not about their direct function – calls, we are talking about different apps: for communicating, dating, hairdressing, cleaning, weather, translation, for beauty and keeping a healthy way of life, for providing taxi services, music and video playback, apps for hiding a person’s location and many others. It’s just a short list of apps used by users of Android and iOS.
Taxi apps like Uber take an important place in everyday life, making routine easier and faster for users around the world. They enable carrying out a trip without calls and long expectations, only with the help of several taps. They move into top gear because they are:
- Easy to use;
- Provide a direct connection “client-driver” without a dispatcher (that means the reduction of a cost);
- Especially comfortable when you don’t know your exact address (a navigator automatically determines it);
- Allow tracking movement of the chosen car;
- Eliminate the necessity of having cash on you;
- Give a chance to compare prices and choose a preferable one;
- Enable viewing and influencing the driver’s rating.
A Typical Structure of the System
There is a hierarchy of elements that form a structure of providing taxi services. Its back-end part is a server application that collects, processes, and sends data to mobile applications. These data are managed by taxi app developers in administrative panels which are made in the form of web or desktop applications.
This is a simplistic pattern of the described taxi app development structure (a well-known Gett taxi app, which we developed, is a bright example of this system at work):
This system can be conditionally divided into 4 parts (from up to down): database servers, back-end part, front-end part (administrative panel), and mobile application. As you can see, the mobile application is one of the elements of the whole structure. The elements of the system are connected through the API. The API is developed along with the entire structure.
How to Make a Taxi Booking App
The first thing that comes to mind concerning the question of how to make a taxi booking app is what features will be in your mobile application. How will you convince the users that your application is effective and necessary? As well as the features, think of its design, as a taxi app must be comfortable in usage. As far as an application is oriented on both a passenger and a driver, it should combine features meeting interests of both of them, and then select the platform (Android and/or iOS). When all the preparation stages are completed, think through and write down all the parts of the system. Here taxi app developers do their best to avoid technical imperfections and to improve the quality of their app.
The Features Essential for the App:
According to the structure of a taxi ordering system, there are two main apps distinguished: for a driver and for a user. There are several features necessary for both of them, such as:
- App localization in several languages;
- Travel routing with a clear definition of addresses;
- Taximeter for an automatic price determination;
- Taxi arrival time indication.
However, taxi apps for users and driver still are very different in terms of their goals, user stories, and functionality that needs to be present in the application like Uber, Gett, or Lyft. Let us review possible functionality of each of the variants.
For a Driver:
1. A table of orders and new notifications;
2. Navigator/electronic map with trip details;
3. User’s comments: requirements for the capacity and additional equipment (child seat, roof rack, rail, box, etc.);
4. The driver’s profile: bonuses, statuses, balance.
For a User:
1. Online map with the nearest taxis indication;
2. The info about each taxi (to choose a car according to the wishes): price, distance, number of seats, driver’s language, driver’s rating, availability of fasteners for bicycle transport, etc;
3. The possibility to leave a review about a trip, file a complaint, contact an administrator.
4. “My addresses” (for the most attended addresses);
5. Travel history and the opportunity to repeat the trip.
Examples of a Successful Taxi App Development
No one objects that today the most prominent application in this field is Uber. The other less popular Uber clone apps are Gett and Lyft. We strongly recommend analyzing the experience of existing solutions before building your own one. Thus, meet the Uber itself and its promising alternatives.
Uber is an application that helps drivers and passengers to find each other in a few minutes and quickly and reliably move about the city at any time of the day. One doesn’t need to park, wait for a taxi or a bus. With Uber, everybody can book a car with one touch. Moreover, it’s easy to pay with a card or cash in the specified cities. Uber is the solution for all occasions for trips to the airport or around the city. Uber is available in over 500 cities all over the world.
The main advantages of the Uber taxi service:
- Fast on-demand pickups;
- Comfort-class cars;
- Reasonable fares;
- Quick travel: a driver can not deviate from the route and take other passengers (if this is not a UberPool service);
- No cash needed;
- UberPool service: share a taxi with other passengers to save money.
Recently Uber has started losing its good reputation because of the lack of security. There are more and more criminal cases, verbal abuses and attacks. All of this mess has caused Uber to be banned fully or partially across most of the cities in various countries worldwide.
The main Uber alternative in the United States is Lyft. It is used in more than 60 cities. Going with Lyft is as safe as possible: in addition to valid rights, the administration of Lyft requires that drivers provide them a certificate from the DMV road transport department, a biography, a confirmation of the absence of previous convictions or serious offenses. The application’s interface looks like Uber’s: users see movements of cars and details about a driver. There are three price categories – Lyft, Lyft Premier and Lyft Line and you can order Lyft Plus for a company of six people. The application, of course, is designed for both Android and iOS.
Another popular example of Uber like app development is Gett (used to be Get Taxi before). Our company participated in the development of this app, so we know well how the influencers of mobile taxi services were born. It is one of the fastest developing services in the United States. It is used in more than 100 towns all over the world, including New York, London, Moscow, and Tel Aviv. Gett is famous for its low prices. For example, a kilometer will be about 25 cents in New York. In Gett app, you can see the time of arrival and information about a driver. Taxi drivers are required to get a license and to pass a preliminary check. People who developed Gett app tried to make a trip as much comfortable as possible.
Hailo is a United Kingdom-oriented riding service. Its particular feature is a possibility to book a taxi for others, for example, for your friend arriving at an airport. Hailo for Business permits the premium clients to travel business class.
Summary: How to Make Taxi Apps Like Uber
The process of building taxi apps is very difficult and time-consuming. The main advice for taxi app entrepreneurs and those having an idea to create an app like Uber is to try and choose a software development company experienced in taxi app development. Such a company will have developers with relevant experience on board as well as the knowledge of typical problems that may occur on the way and how to avoid or fix them.