India is crazy about its iconic three-wheelers, and the home-grown taxi-hailing start-ups know that. After Softbank-backed Ola introduced its auto booking service, TaxiForSure today launched a similar auto rickshaw service in Bangalore, with a total number of 500 auto rickshaws. However, whether these three wheelers will help India’s home-grown taxi-hailing apps in fighting off foreign competitors or not, is yet to be seen.
TaxiForSure works on a model, wherein it does not own cabs or autos. It instead partners with various taxi operators (similar to the Uber model) and enables them with technology to ensure that customers get an easily accessible, safe & reliable taxi ride ‘for sure’.
Apart from introducing an auto-booking service, the company is also working on making some necessary changes to its model which would eventually enhance customer experience and make it a smooth sailing ride, every time.
Echoing the same, Raghunandan G, Co-founder and CEO, TaxiForSure, said,
We will leverage our technology prowess, operational excellence, and focus on customer delight, to ensure Indian customers will always have a safe, convenient, and economical commute solution. Further, we are also happy to empower the existing auto drivers to enter the aggregation ecosystem with a simple app, and work towards elevating their existing lifestyle.
TaxiForSure has launched the auto service in association with Three Wheels United, a Bangalore-based social enterprise that works closely with auto drivers and their families. Three Wheels United is a for-profit social enterprise which focuses on the economic and social development of drivers.With this collaboration, TaxiForSure aims to bring down the running costs and add improvements to the driver’s earnings.
The service which kicked off with a fleet of 500 rickshaws will soon see an expansion with another 500 rickshaws adding up to the mix. Since the company brings its vehicles at your door step to pick you up, a nominal amount of Rs. 10 will also be added up to the fare as convenience fee.
In the wake of the recent Uber rape case, there have been concerns rising over the safety of passengers in taxis that ply in the country. Taxi For Sure, which was started by IIM-Ahmedabad alumnae Aprameya Radhakrishna and Raghunandan G in Bangalore in June 2011, has also incorporated all sorts of safety factors to its vehicles, aimed at providing a safe ambience to commuters.
Since India is a country with a large linguistic diversity, TaxiForSure has also added support for multiple languages in its drivers’ app, which includes English, Hindi and Kannada. This is a basic, yet pivotal factor, since I’ve seen cab companies operating drivers in Bangalore, who aren’t able to understand a thing which comes on their navigation systems, accounting for some tremendous increase in commuter’s stress levels.
Post the offered service, the company also looks forward to prompt its user to provide a feedback. On the basis of the received feedback and ratings, the ride-hailing company would filter its pool of drivers and would further enhance user’s experience.