Gett, the Israel-based ridesharing app formerly known as GetTaxi, has a user base that pales in comparison to Uber and Lyft — it covers more than 120 cities globally, but only has a U.S. presence in New York City right now though its partner Juno. The two have plans to expand into other cities and states in the not-too-distant future. Gett is appreciably more reasonable when it comes to pricing, though, and the service never charges a premium during busy hours.
Gett gets away with it by paying drivers a competitive hourly wage rather than a percentage of every fare, like Uber and Lyft. The company passes those savings on to riders. In Manhattan, Gett caps fares between Houston Street and 72nd street at $10 plus tax and tip.
Curb was briefly shuttered after an acquisition by Verifone Systems, the San Jose, California-based company that operates in-cab entertainment and payment systems. It’s another ridesharing underdog, but one that’s expanding aggressively — the service taps a network of 50,000 taxis and hired cars across over 45 U.S. cities.
Fundamentally, Curb works much in the same way as Uber and Lyft: Hail a driver, and you’ll be whisked away to your final destination. Uniquely, though, the service lets you schedule pickups ahead of time in some cities for a $2 fee. Know you’ll need a ride after a long night of ringing in the New Year? Set a time and location, so that a Curb driver will await your arrival. And it never charges surge pricing.
Curb just overhauled the backseat monitor of their taxi’s, giving the passenger control over what they are watching. The screen will also show a running tally of the fare, eventually giving the rider the opportunity to search for restaurants and even make reservations from the taxi.
This San Francisco-based startup started out providing transportation to and from airports. Now, in addition to airport rides, they offer around-town rides in a few, select cities. They are currently up in running in 16 metro areas, including 22 airports. The app also lets you schedule airport rides up to two months in advance, and a flat rate means you don’t have to worry about hidden fees and surcharges. The most unique thing about Wings, though? Riders can pick and choose their favorite drivers, and the company promises that, moving forward, the service will remain less expensive than a taxi or limo.
Arro taps into a database of licensed taxis — 20,000, according to the company — for on-demand transportation. It’s available in a number of cities, including New York City, Boston, Miami, and Houston, and it works like Uber, Lyft, and the myriad of other well-established ridesharing services. Confirm your location and a driver will arrive to pick you up.Arro’s reliance on cabs means that it doesn’t charge surge pricing. Fares are based on taxi meters. And the company says that unlike other taxi-hailing apps, its service is much more reliable — pickup requests are sent to drivers through dedicated data terminals on cabs rather than drivers’ smartphones.
Juno is a relative newcomer to the ridesharing industry. The app was founded by Talmon Marco, a serial entrepreneur who made his fortune selling messaging app Viber for almost a billion dollars, and functions as a driving service that prioritizes fair compensation for drivers. The company takes a 10-percent commission out of fares — Uber, in comparison, takes around 30 percent of fares — and will eventually provide long-term drivers with restricted stock units (RSUs) so that they’ll own a piece of the company.It doesn’t ask riders to make any sacrifices, either. Juno rides come in three flavors, quick, stylish and SUV for larger groups. The app also estimates each tier’s fare, provides an ETA, and, when you’re ready to go, hails nearby cars. It’s a little barebones at the moment — it’s still in beta — so it doesn’t have a carpooling component or other features you might find in more established apps. This is a good thing for prospective riders, however, given rides are 30-percent off during this soft-launch period.D
If you don’t mind hitching a ride with a few others, Via is worth considering. Co-founded by Stanford neuroscience Ph.D. Daniel Ramot, the app uses a “logistics engine” to fill as many seats as possible in cars headed toward popular destinations. Unlike Uber and Lyft, the routes are static — you simply tell the service where you’d like to go and you’ll get dropped off at a nearby location along the way. These static routes mean that you’ll often have to walk a block or two to reach your pick-up location, but Via’s reservation system doesn’t preclude you from bringing a pal or two. The app also automatically finds cars with the necessary seating, and each extra member in your party rides at half price. Via is available in Chicago, New York, and Washington, operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.Recently, Via announced a partnership with Curb to carpool with others in New York City’s yellow cab. The service is offered through Via and Curb, allowing New York’s taxi drivers to move more passengers, which reduces emissions, and users to pay less.
There are countless services to choose from when it comes to nabbing a ride to or from the festivities, but Redwood City-based Flywheel asserts that its system is the most reliable of the bunch. Like Arro, it recruits cab drivers to ferry users from place to place, but aims to replace traditional the taxi meters in its cars with “TaxiOS,” its proprietary smartphone-based system for handling payments and pickup requests. It’s available in San Francisco, Seattle, Sacramento, San Diego, Portland, and LA.Flywheel also lets you offer a bigger tip as incentive during periods of high demand, a feature the company touts as a voluntary replacement for surge premiums.
Via’s specialty is low rates for shared rides, starting at only $2.95 to $5, plus tax, for single trips. But where it really shines is in its plans for regular commuters. Riders can select ViaPasswith weekly or monthly plans that provide multiple rides per day, for a set, flat rate. This varies by city: a 7-day pass for four rides per day in Manhattan is $63, plus tax, while a 7-day unlimited pass in Washington, D.C., is $25.
Wingz started with prescheduled drives to and from the airport — and still specializes in that. But now, it provides prescheduled rides wherever you need to go. The best part? You can lock in the price upfront. Users can schedule rides for up to two months in advance and modify their booking if needed.
Juno, available only in New York City, says treating its drivers better means drivers treat you better. Juno — which recently was acquired by fellow ridesharing company Gett — accepts only the highest-rated drivers from Uber and Lyft, and promises 24/7 live phone, email and text support to both drivers and customers.
Safr — a newly rebranded app formerly called Chariot for Women and then SafeHer — was created to combat violence in the rideshare space and provide an alternative platform geared toward women. All drivers undergo background checks andriders can select the gender of their driver to suit their comfort level. According to the Safr website, drivers also are paid above the industry standard to spur stellar service. Safr monitors each ride to ensure passengers and drivers arrive safely at their destinations, and passengers can push an “SOS” button in the app to call for immediate assistance if they feel unsafe.
HopSkipDrive offers safe, scheduled ridesharing for kids. When you request a ride for your son or daughter, you’ll be matched with a CareDriver with a minimum of five years of child care experience. Your child can exchange a special code word with the driver before getting in the car to ensure he or she is the designated CareDriver, and you’ll be able to track the ride with live updates.
If you like to plan ahead, Summon — formerly known as InstantCab — is your app. You can schedule a ride in advance via your phone or computer, and see details about your driver and a fare quote. The app even lets you select your favorite chauffeur. And, in a unique twist, riders also can choose on-demand rides from a taxi or personal car, with prices based on trip distance and time.
For those who prefer the classic yellow cab, some apps work exclusively with taxis. Arro connects riders with one at the push of a button. Plus, it will set up automatic payment on your phone — and it can even pay for a taxi you’ve hailed without the app.
Fasten — which was created in Boston and launched later in Austin in the wake of the temporary departure of Uber and Lyft — claims to have “the highest rating and vehicle standards in the industry.” The company prides itself on showing price estimates in advance and updating your fare live during the ride. Plus, Fasten says that since it charges drivers a flat fee per ride, as opposed to a percentage of the trip fare, rates are lower for riders.
Waze launched as a community-based navigation app giving live updates on road hazards, accident warnings and upcoming speeding traps on your route. Now Waze is hopping into the carpool game, starting with commuter routes in California. Just tell the app where you live and work and get a ride from a Wazer with a similar commute, up to two times a day. Prices are preset, based on the cost of gas, and are shared by the riders and driver. When the ride’s over, Waze Carpool automatically transfers the payment from the rider to the driver.
GREAT ARTICLE FROM TED SEBENSKI
Today I’m excited to introduce the 65 mobility startups coming from around the world to the 2019 the North American International Auto Show (aka the Detroit Auto Show). These startups will be exhibiting at AutoMobili-D, the technology-focused expo of the Detroit Auto Show that is running in its 3rd year from Monday, Jan. 14 through Thursday, Jan. 17. No other event in North America provides an international platform for this vast array of companies, organizations and mobility thought leaders under one roof.
I continue to be blown away by the growth of the mobility startup area at AutoMobili-D. Since its inception 3 years ago, the startup area has grown by 59%. The founders of these startups understand that any key decisions in automotive and supplier strategy eventually go through Detroit. With startups coming from all around the world to Detroit, it’s clear that Detroit’s role in the future of mobility is as strong as ever.
For 2019, a few stats on the startup area at AutoMobili-D:
These mobility startups are building a wide range of technologies and businesses that span:
For the third year in a row, Techstars Mobility has partnered with the North American International Auto Show to bring mobility startups from around the world to Detroit. These startups will be showcasing their innovative mobility technologies as part of AutoMobili-D, a dedicated mobility technology expo. This partnership is part of Techstars Mobility’s ongoing mission to connect the automotive mobility industry to startups by facilitating connections and building partnerships.