Is there a need within our trade for a Taxi App that is owned, administered and led by the drivers that use and promote it or are we better off leaving it to the venture capitalists who are currently leading the market, a market that will probably see a lot more Taxi Apps launched?
There is of course a lot to be said for having a Taxi App that is funded by venture capitalists where there is no cost to the driver in set up costs whatsoever, obviously the driver does not have to put his hand in his pocket to fund the development or set up costs, there is also the operating costs of any App and also continual develop costs as Apps need to be developed to suit the market place. So why should we as drivers even bother with looking at running our own App, why don’t we just leave it to those who have the money to develop such an App and to market the App with the vast amounts of money available to them that they can throw at promotion and advertising?
The main reason for a driver led Taxi App is so that we can in some way take control of our own trades destiny rather than relying on others who are basically only in the market to make a profit once they build the business to a certain level and then sell it off. A driver initiative should in my opinion be run as some sort of cooperative with each member having some sort of stake in the business and also a say in how the business is run much along the lines of the ideas of the original Radio Circuits, although some safe guards would need to be put in place so that history does not repeat itself, if such an initiative was to come to fruition then it could do so much good for the trade as a whole as every driver could get behind the App which could be developed into a full blown Taxi App and Taxi Booking service. Drivers could once again promote and serve something of which they could rightly feel a part of, something that is run by the trade, for the trade, an App that would obviously be cheaper in charges to the driver than any other as it could still be run on the original TLC ethos of “Not for Profit”
The recent announcement that TLC are to no longer manage the TLC Taxi App has come as a real blow to those who are passionate about our trade but before anyone else can step into the breach and make another attempt at launching a driver led Taxi App the question needs to be asked as to whether there is enough passion, enthusiasm and dedication within our trade to make a driver led Taxi App work or should we all just surrender to the money men and allow them to take a huge chunk of our trade?
So is there enough interest, enthusiasm, passion and dedication amongst our ranks? You tell me!