How can someone make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT

Mobile App Development , Posted by on 2019/02/22 0     Comments

UBER was launched in the year 2009 by Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp. Till then customers were used to hiring taxis on their own. UBER turned this traditional model upside down by their proposed model of conducting a cab hailing business. Their unconventional model of using apps running on smartphones by usage of technology soon caught up with consumers and earned for itself the tag of being the most successful start up. Since then, there have been several startups who have tried to emulate the same model, like OLA, LYFT etc with varying degrees of success. Also, there are several who are emulating the same model and coming up with services catering to their target audience. So, what does it take to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT is a question worth pondering about.

To start off, all app based cab booking services project themselves as technology companies which work in the transportation sector. In fact, it was UBER which started this trend and others have merely walked along the same path. So, let us first see how UBER works and then we shall explore how to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT.

How to book a cab through UBER:

  • An user who has the app on his smartphone sends a request which the system directs to the driver who is situated geographically nearest to him.
  • An UBER driver has the option to either accept or reject the request.
  • If the driver rejects the offer, the user’s request is automatically sent to the nearest available driver.
  • If the driver accepts the offer, his information details are displayed to the passenger along with the estimated time of arrival.
  • The driver picks up the passenger from his pick up location and after completion of the trip drops him at his drop location.

Your aim to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT shall have to ensure the above mentioned mode of operation in the most efficient way possible.

Identification of target audience:

For a business to be successful, it is very essential to identify the audience for which it is being built and who shall be the main source of revenue. In case of UBER, it was a platform for all age groups who were bound by a common need, which was to get cabs with the least hassle. There are several people who avoid public transport and would like to avail of taxi services, UBER became exactly the thing they were looking for. So, if you desire to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT, you have to identify your target audience and work to meet their expectations.

Revenue Model:

There has to be a well defined revenue model for a successful and viable business. If you are to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT you must have a proper revenue model in place. In general, UBER facilitates its drivers get bookings through its mobile application. After a trip is completed UBER charges a commission which is a percentage of the amount charged for the trip. Also, there is the concept of surge pricing. The prices undergo a spike on the higher side on days where there is a higher demand, like for eg on holidays, when there is heavy congestion of traffic, bad weather etc. The passenger is however made aware of the prevailing prices before availing the trip. This transparency is of great help from the passenger’s point of view and if you want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT it is advisable to be transparent in decisions which affect your target audience.

Features of an On-Demand taxi booking app:

Let us have a look at the features which an on-demand taxi booking app must have and for the sake of convenience we shall take UBER as a reference point. This shall help you as you proceed in your journey to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT.

  • Location tracking: Through the app UBER is able to track the location of the driver. The app is so designed that the drivers can be tracked even when they are not using the app. So, when a passenger requests a ride, UBER can locate the nearest available driver in the shortest possible time and inform the passenger accordingly. UBER even gives an idea of the estimated time by which the vehicle would arrive at the customer destination.
  • Mapping technology: If you want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT it shall have to include features which help the drivers navigate through the streets as they move towards the drop location. Just to mention, UBER uses Google Maps to take care of this requirement.  

By the way, we at Vyrazu Labs have implemented map based technologies to track the geographical position of an user in several of our development projects. Maid2Order, Tripin2, Kranq, ShareYourMove and Drive2Advertise are some of the examples.

  • Payment System: UBER has several modes of payments. There are some geographies where cash transactions are permitted. In general, the most common mode of payment is the cashless mode by which payment is made by the use of debit and credit cards. If you want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT you have to ensure that your system allows a cashless mode of payment. For this you have to include popular payment partners who obey all compliance standards of conducting online payments.
  • Ratings: In a normal taxi service, there is hardly any communication between the passenger and the driver. Also, there is no system of receiving or giving any feedback. To ensure a proper feedback mechanism and to improve the experience of the customer UBER has devised a rating system by which both the driver and the customer can give a rating to each other. This serves as a two way street by which grievance can be addressed and gives a feeling of safety to both parties. If you want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT do ensure that this feature is present.

We shall be going into the details of the UBER app now. As you move ahead in your journey to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT you must know that the UBER app is actually a combination of three different applications which function together as a whole. The three applications have been developed separately as they have their own functionalities and contribute in their own way towards the functioning of the UBER app.

Our development centre at Vyrazu Labs has designed and developed an application named PAUSA which is loosely based on the same software architectural model on which UBER works. Our market study team had observed that there were a number of similar online applications in the market which were designed to provide services like housekeeping etc to customers. We came up with a different approach and developed a tool which would look after the needs of the service providers who actually provide the services to the customers.

Well, if someone wants to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT one has to ensure that the app follows the software architecture as briefly described above. Now, let us examine them in details.

Passenger app: This is the version of the app which serves as the interface through which a passenger interacts. This is primarily designed to enable users book a cab for a ride. Its main features are:

  • Registration: This allows the user to register on the app by creating a new profile or by using their social media details.
  • Booking: Using this feature a customer can book a cab for a ride.
  • Payment: Using this feature customers can pay for the ride through the app itself.
  • Push notifications: Notifications are used to send information to the user about events that concern the ride he is about to avail. These contain details of the driver, model and colour of the cab, estimated time of arrival etc.
  • Fare Calculation: Using this feature the rider is made aware of the fare he would have to pay at the end of the trip. This information is conveyed to the user before booking the ride.
  • Driver Ratings: This feature allows the user to give a rating to the driver, whether positive or negative. This feedback is used for bettering the services in future and UBER very strongly insists on this.

If you seriously want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT it shall serve your purpose if you include the rating feature in your application as that is the best way to get first hand feedback. But to move forward in your journey so as to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT you need to have a well designed app which looks after the needs of the driver.

Driver app: This is the version through which the driver interacts with the overall system and has been designed to serve the needs of someone who shall be offering his services as a driver to an app based taxi operator. Its main features include the following:

  • Profile: This contains all the details of the driver including license details, registration etc. The availability or non availability of the driver is displayed through the status function.
  • Alerts: A driver gets information about incoming bookings through the push notifications. These including booking details, route details etc based on which he can decide whether to accept or reject the request.
  • Navigation: This feature allows the driver to choose the best possible route between the pick up and drop location of the user.
  • Estimation of fare: A driver gets an estimate of the fare they would receive for the trip using this feature.

Admin Panel: The Admin panel is the foundation on which the entire app rests. You should try your best to equip your app with a robust admin panel, if you want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT. The admin panel is actually a web based application which is used to manage and maintain the activities which are essential to the functioning of the system. Managing day to day operations, revenue, payroll are just some of the functionalities of the system.

So, in order to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT one has to take care of all the above functionalities. But as this is a technical application, we just cannot skip the technical part — can we?

Well, if you want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT you have to see to it that the app is compatible across all major platforms. So, it has to work equally well with both iOS and Android systems. From a financial perspective it shall cost anywhere in the range of $100k-$300k to come up with such an app and time wise you shall be needing around 250 man hours of time to complete the developmental work. So, you can very well see that it shall not be an easy task if you want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT.

Also, you can come up with your customised features in your app as you move forward to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT. In fact this approach to be innovative paid enormous dividends for us when we embarked on our journey to develop a software product of our own at Vyrazu Labs. Consequently, we came up with HRMS, a cloud based online tool which automates all the functions of HR. The learning acquired during the development of this product propelled us to be useful contributors at Quora which was augmented by the blog posts delivered from our end. So, it does help if you want to walk your own path.

It may also happen that your vision to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT may have a relation with us. We have a centre for people like you who have a vision and want to turn their dreams into reality. Come, let us have a broad discussion centred on your idea. There are strong non-disclosure agreements in place which shall protect your interests. We can sit and have a round of coffee at STARTUP LAB while we brainstorm on the possibilities. Your desire to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT may find us as a valuable partner in your quest.             

Well, as we have a clear picture of how things shall be if you really want to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT, we hope you are able to fulfill your wishes and come up with your dream app. Our best wishes remain in the hope that one day you shall be able to make a successful cab app like UBER, OLA OR LYFT.