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Old 24th November 2014, 21:11   #1
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Default The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Related Thread: Uber (Review: Uber Premium Taxi Service)

Past few months, there has been a big revolution in the 'hire a cab' service. Cab aggregators such as Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru (and some more to come!) are going all out to woo the drivers and the customers alike.

There has been million dollar investments in these aggregator companies too.

These companies have slowly started to organize the way people travel around in their choked cities and more importantly providing 'dignity of labor' to the entrepreneur drivers.

Do you think these companies will make a long lasting (good) impact to the way we travel around in our cities?

Last edited by GTO : 25th November 2014 at 16:18. Reason: Adding related thread :)
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Old 24th November 2014, 21:16   #2
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Nice

I think it will make more sense to understand their business models first and then see what makes more sense in India.

You have rightly termed them as aggregators but Meru also has it's company owned cabs hence operates in both the models.

IMO Ola is doing the right thing by going all guns blazing to create a loyal customer base. However i do wonder whether their model is going to be profitable or become just another e commerce model in the likes of flipkart/snapdeal which operates only on investor money and not profits.
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Old 24th November 2014, 21:24   #3
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by balajisv View Post
Past few months, there has been a big revolution in the 'hire a cab' service. Cab aggregators such as Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru (and some more to come!) are going all out to woo the drivers and the customers alike.

There has been million dollar investments in these aggregator companies too.

These companies have slowly started to organize the way people travel around in their choked cities and more importantly providing 'dignity of labor' to the entrepreneur drivers.

Do you think these companies will make a long lasting (good) impact to the way we travel around in our cities?
The best thing about this revolution that I've noticed is the increased frequency at which people called a cab. In my childhood, hiring a cab was a very rare event. When we did hire them, the rates used to be exorbitantly high compared to the living costs at that time. With the organized sector and transparent rates, it is much more affordable for common man to hire a cab to go somewhere.

During my last visit to Trivandrum airport we tried out their pre-paid taxi and experienced what would have been the situation if these organized fleets had not been there to save us. The charges were exorbitantly high and the drivers were behaving as if we were some foreigners who should tip them with a 100 rupee note! After that, we decided to book Cel cabs or similar operators to pick from airport.
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Old 24th November 2014, 22:02   #4
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Right! I myself have been calling for a cab more regularly now!

The ease of booking these cabs coupled with affordability, availability and decent behavior of drivers compels me to book the rides for my parents, wifey, late night parties and to travel to my dreaded (ITPL) work place too!
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Old 24th November 2014, 22:05   #5
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Meru is a dinosaur trying to evolve with modern times.

Per my calculation, if you majorly live in the cities and don't venture out with family (more than 2 ppl), a 2 wheeler suffices most of the time and hiring a cab turns out to be cheaper than buying and driving a vehicle of your own.
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Old 25th November 2014, 06:27   #6
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Leave aside business models and customer perception, I think it is regulation (induced by politics) that will eventually decide the fate of the cab industry.

Uber has been facing growing oppression from the taxi community across the world and is even banned in a few.

I really wonder the scalability of Uber/Lyft etc. Things seem to be fine now where the number of drivers on road is still manageable. But as they scale up (which they aggressively are), I am very curious about how they will deal with issues like legal liabilities, taxation etc that will crop up.
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Old 25th November 2014, 07:52   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hellmet View Post
Per my calculation, if you majorly live in the cities and don't venture out with family (more than 2 ppl), a 2 wheeler suffices most of the time and hiring a cab turns out to be cheaper than buying and driving a vehicle of your own.
Exactly my thought too. If you want to drive on vacation, self drive cars such as Zoom can be leveraged.
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Old 25th November 2014, 07:56   #8
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Ola and TFS are changing the game with daily payments (as opposed to waiting for them for days) and letting them work for extra money WHEN they feel like. This is better for the economy and for road users. My auto-using wife is seriously trying out ola mini and ubergo (she wont drive/we wont get a driver). This adds capacity at zero cost into the system and lowers costs for all end users.

Uber has revolutionized supply demand matching which Ola/TFS are yet to do. Uber won't normally send a cabbie 10km to pick u up for a 10km ride (which isnt worth his time) while Ola gave me that connection once.
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Old 25th November 2014, 09:47   #9
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

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Last edited by GTO : 25th November 2014 at 16:19.
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Old 25th November 2014, 10:51   #10
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

In Pune they have taxi4Sure which charges only Rs 49 for up to 4kms travel! It is as cheap as a rickshaw.

The concept behind is using taxi for short distances as well instead of a rickshaw. Lest their business model, I am happy that I don't have to run behind a rickshaw, beg to charge by meter, get rude replies etc

Enough of Rickshaw driver's imploiteness. And if you ask me it's way safer too!
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Old 25th November 2014, 11:02   #11
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In last few years, renting a car has become an all together different experience - easy, prompt and hassle free. These days many car rental firms are getting into agreement with the vehicle manufacturers and are making available a self drive car at reasonable rates.

Carzonrent and Tata Motors have launch an initiative in the Delhi/NCR region, under which customers would be able to hire a Tata Nano car for self drive at just Rs. 399 per day or on a hourly basis at Rs. 99 and also for a whole month at a rent of Rs. 6,999.
once this model matures more, i wont be surprised if people prefer renting vehicle rather than owning them.

Also, Zoomcar offers a Mercedes A Class for as low as 165/hour. Now, who would not get tempted to take one it for a ride.

I read this in an advertisement, don't know if it has any flip side to it.

Last edited by GTO : 25th November 2014 at 16:20. Reason: Merging back to back posts
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Old 25th November 2014, 11:27   #12
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

On 19/11/2014, I paid Rs. 1120/- Plus Rs. 20/- for toll for a cab from Hyderabad international Airport to Hitex city. This was from a pre-paid counter.
I think these low prices in Bangalore and Pune are temporary to get the small time taxi owners to join or to quit.
It's very bad in the long run. There was an article in Sunday's paper advicing selling off private cars and depending on cabs only.
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Old 25th November 2014, 11:30   #13
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

In general Ola , Mega ( Bangalore) . Tab Cab ( Mumbai ) are good .

Easycab is good in Bangalore while in Mumbai hiring them is a big risk as they cancel bookings at last minutes.

Meru is generally bad however in Mumbai and NCR strictly avoid calling Meru unless you want old , dirty , smelly car in metallic green colour.

My perception is based on call taxis in Bangalore , Mumbai and Delhi.

Cities like Pune still need better call taxi service and Chennai could do little better if they ban old Ambys from Airport pre paid counter and tieup with call taxis instead.

Last edited by amitk26 : 25th November 2014 at 11:46.
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Old 25th November 2014, 11:35   #14
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

I have been frequently using these mini taxi bookings over the android apps and here is my feedback

1. Pricing - Way cheaper than the Autos, Clean cars and AC
2. Tried Meru-Genie, OLA, Taxiforsure so far
3. Meru acquired Genie cabs and they seem to have less cabs but booking system is good.
4. OLA has biggest fleet, but I have had bad experience like Driver not turning up and giving stupid reasons
5. Taxiforsure seem to be the cheapest and they also surely book the cab. but then the drivers play tricks if the distance is short.

So far i prefer only the Meru.

Coming to the pricing, it is just introductory but then, with Nano taxi and Auto being added to their network, pricing might be lower for next couple of years (Plus the investments they are getting)

More than the pricing, for me its the peace of mind and satisfaction of paying what i am suppose to pay.
Present day auto drivers of Bangalore just do a favor by dropping us somewhere after 10 mins of begging and after bargaining for double or one and a half meter. Meter also they avoid for some strange reason and Fare always starts with 100,200 and multiples
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Old 25th November 2014, 11:35   #15
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Default re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by phamilyman View Post
Uber has revolutionized supply demand matching which Ola/TFS are yet to do. Uber won't normally send a cabbie 10km to pick u up for a 10km ride (which isnt worth his time) while Ola gave me that connection once.
Guess that is more to do with the application logic than anything else. They call themselves a technology company for nothing.
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