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TaxiForSure does an Ola, launches Auto Mate TaxiForSure does an Ola, launches Auto Mate

Jan-17-2015 | 0 Comments

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Bengaluru: Now, simply tap on the TaxiForSure (TFS) mobile app to book an autorickshaw. The cab aggregator launched the 'Auto Mate' with 500 autos on Friday. TFS aims to add 500 more autos in a week's time under its umbrella. The fare is similar to the Nano segment of its services—Rs10 per km after first two kilometres and an additional Rs 10 as convenience fee.

TFS has partnered with Three Wheels United, a social enterprise that works with auto drivers and also conducts background checks on them.

The company founders, however, denied they were under pressure from their competitor Ola that has already launched the auto services through its mobile app in Bengaluru. Raghunandan G, co-founder and CEO of TFS, said, "We planned to include the auto service as a segment much before our competitors did. In most Indian cities, barring Mumbai and Kolkata, cities don't hail a taxi but an auto. The reason why we wanted to introduce autos in our variety of service is also because the demand and supply gaps have not been met yet and the demand for our Nano segment is growing."

TFS has included certain unique features too. It has enabled Hindi and Kannada language interfaces for customers and auto drivers. Drivers who cannot read English can have the GPS on their mobile translated to Kannada. Simply put: if the commuter is unable to explain the drop point on his mobile but shows that spot on his mobile, the driver can immediately get it in Kannada on his mobile. This limits the interaction and communication hassles with commuters.

TFS will also give on-phone assistance to drivers and conduct drivers training courses before bringing them on board. Ramesh Prabhu, CEO of Three Wheels United, said his company is already imparting soft skill training to drivers and helping them procure vehicle loans. However, the convenience fee is a matter of debate as the transport department has already ticked off Ola on this.

Aprameya R, founder-director, TFS said, "The autorickshaws are already registered with the transport department. We have sought the department's permission to service autos without having to register ourselves." The convenience fee is shared by TFS and Third Wheels United and they get no other cut from the fare.

TFS also has aggressive plans for its cab operations. It has placed a bulk order with Tata Motors to buy more Nano cars. At least 3,000 more Nano taxis are set to hit the city roads in three months.

HOW TO BOOK AN AUTO

* The process is similar to booking a cab. Log on to TaxiForSure app on your phone

* Click on the auto icon that displays the pick-up location and available autos

* Select the option of ride, then location and confirm.

* Once confirmed, the app dials a driver who takes the ride.

* Name, contact and vehicle details of the driver are provided

* Driver calls up and picks you up

* Tariff is Rs 25 for first 1.9km, Rs 10 per additional km and Rs 10 extra on the entire fare.


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