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The Taxi Evolution – How Technology is Changing the Way We Travel in Swindon

Last updated Tuesday, April 25, 2023 10:39 ET , Source: Swoop Taxis

In days gone by, the only way to hail a cab was to walk to the nearest taxi rank or stick out an arm to try and flag down a passing vehicle – with variable chances of success.

Bath , United Kingdom, 04/25/2023 / SubmitMyPR /
The Taxi Evolution – How Technology is Changing the Way We Travel in Swindon
The Taxi Evolution – How Technology is Changing the Way We Travel in Swindon

Modern developments such as app-based bookings, real-time driver updates and security alerts to inform customers of the vehicle make, model, and number plate have all revolutionised how taxis work and what we expect when booking a car.

SWOOP, the regional cab app is changing the face of taxis in Swindon and across the southwest, explains how the world of cabs has progressed and what we might expect from taxi transport in the years to come.

How Tech Improves the Taxi Ride Experience

While we might appreciate the efficiency, speed and convenience of booking a SWOOP cab through a taxi app, there are actually lots of pieces of tech working simultaneously to improve the service a taxi company offers. Examples include:

  • Wireless remote card machines – no longer are you in a tight spot if you don’t have enough cash or haven’t the correct change to pay for your journey. One tap and your taxi charge is covered.
  • GPS technology – cabbies tend to have the best possible knowledge of the local roads, but GPS ensures you can be picked up from any location of your choosing, no matter how remote it might be. GPS can also track cars, so you can see where your taxi is and when it will arrive.
  • On-demand bookings – in a rush or forgotten to book a return trip from your cabbie? Simply tap the pre-programmed settings in your app to request a taxi to your usual destination, or summon a Swindon taxi on an ad hoc basis whenever you're ready.

We’ve also seen the benefits of tech safety provisions, such as notifying you of the driver and vehicle to ensure you know a car is a verified, registered cab and sending alerts when a vehicle is en route to avoid passengers waiting alone outdoors.

These changes are all now live and available through your local taxi app. Still, there are lots of other elements of tech development that could make a difference to the way taxi companies operate.

Predictions for QR Code Developments in Tech-Based Taxi Services

QR codes are on the rise and allow passengers to place or automate bookings – this can be a fantastic option for visitors and tourists who aren’t 100% sure where they are or don’t wish to wander around looking for road signs.

Placing a QR code on a sign in a venue, such as a museum, shopping centre, or restaurant, means anybody can scan to book a taxi without worrying about the specific details since these can be fed directly to the taxi or dispatcher.

Another use case for QR codes could relate to safety, where customers with any concerns can scan a driver’s badge or licence to verify their credentials and that they are a trusted and licensed driver. This tech may be particularly useful in arranging transport for children or vulnerable adults.

The COVID-19 pandemic proved the effectiveness of QR codes, where individuals scanned a code on almost every public building to report to the track and trace system and comply with public health protection initiatives.

AI Communications for Taxi Cab Users

The next tech you might expect to find in a cab near you very soon is AI, although it'll be stored in the app rather than visible. Automated phone systems are a useful alternative to app bookings, especially for those who find apps difficult to use, such as older adults or people with visual impairments.

Rather than employing a team of call handlers or dispatchers to answer each call, a chatbot or automated system can respond to calls, log the details such as the booking date, time and location, and transmit the request directly to the nearest driver, without any human interaction.

Automated responses can also be leveraged to deal with account statement requests, updates on the whereabouts of a taxi, and other queries, providing accessibility for groups who cannot or do not wish to use an app.

Self-Drive Taxis and Electric Vehicles

The government plans to ban the sale of fuelled vehicles from 2030, which will doubtlessly mean we will see more electric and hybrid cars on the roads. A large proportion of modern taxi firms already provide electric vehicles, which are more efficient and environmentally friendly.

New charges and tariffs, such as emission-controlled zones in city centres, incentivise taxi firms to prioritise electric vehicles when updating or expanding their fleets.

However, driverless cars are more controversial, with early models on the market linked to warnings about how self-drive vehicles have yet to be tested to the full extent of real-world situations.

In San Francisco, USA, regulators approved a robotic cab service in 2022, which provides driverless vehicles through a ‘robo taxi’. Uptake has been varied, where passengers recognise the existence of self-drive cars, yet many still indicate a strong preference for a human-driven vehicle.

The Taxis of the Future

Transport planners predict that, in the decades ahead, taxis won't arrive on the road – instead, they'll fly. This technology is still in development, but the appeal of a speedy commute without sitting in long traffic jams is appealing.

Although flying taxis aren't likely to be hitting the streets of Swindon immediately, some experts anticipate flying cab services being introduced within the next decade and the growth of air transport by around 2050.

Companies like Amazon and Uber Eats have already begun trialling drones to deliver orders and takeout services, but these are only currently based in the largest cities and where the local regulators and public officials have agreed to allow pilot schemes to operate.

In the meantime, GPS, app-based and automated technology have certainly made it easier to book and use a taxi service, but for now, they're keeping their wheels firmly on the road.

Read more about SWOOP Taxis - SWOOP Taxis Independent Taxi App Expands Service to Swindon

About SWOOP Taxis

SWOOP is a fast, friendly, and stress-free taxi service operating across Bath, Swindon and Chippenham. Order your cab via the app and have the full control of paying the driver direct. All drivers accept credit, debit cards and cash paid direct to them at the end of your journey.

Source Company: https://swoop.co.uk/

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