By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez : sfexaminer – excerpt
Soon taxi drivers will throw out old-style taxi meters, and usher in new tools of the trade — if tech company Flywheel has anything to say about it.
Taxi technology company Flywheel announced it recently secured regulatory approval for its newest innovation: smartphone taxi meters.
“This is big for us,” said Percy Rajani, chief technology officer at Flywheel. “We can start really cranking up. … Now you’ve got the device in there so it’ll be a platform for all the other services.”
Flywheel’s software, TaxiOS, will run on dashboard-mounted smartphones. Rajani said with TaxiOS, Flywheel cabbies may soon be able to offer many of the services competitors like Uber and Lyft do, like dynamic pricing during slow-periods, carpool services, price splitting with other passengers and delivery services.
The announcement from Flywheel specifically details approval from California’s Division of Measurement Standards, which had to evaluate the app’s ability to charge fares based on GPS readings, which the San Francisco Examiner reported previously in our “sneak peek” of TaxiOS in October.
Though Flywheel already exists as an app for passengers, Flywheel’s new app and accompanying credit card reader can replace taxi dispatcher radios, mechanical meters, credit card readers and other traditional taxi functions — all in an Android-based smartphone… (more)
Taxis may have been down, but they are not out, and anyone can buy an app to compete in the “sharing” economy if they want to play that game.