TaxiConnect, a local mobile application started about a year ago, recently launched an updated version of the app.
This allows them to create the technology engineered to transform the Namibian taxi industry into a successful and fully digitalised transport service.
The app is a Namibian, locally envisioned, developed and programmed system founded in March 2020 to provide interactive and smart technology for transport bookings and management, all through a mobile application and supporting platforms.
The founder and CEO of TaxiConnect, Reinold Shiwagala said the aim is to transform the taxi industry.
“We want to make people’s lives easier. This second version of the app is built to allow operations to take place in other towns in the country. The first version couldn’t allow that. There is also a delivery of goods and products under this new version that customers can now use,” explained Shiwagala.
He added: “There is so much potential and we can industrialise it. This started as an idea from standing at a taxi rank waiting for a taxi, to having this app running, where a taxi comes to the customer. Over the past year, we have recorded 12 000 users with 8 500 monthly active users and more than 35 000 rides.”
Shiwagala said they initially projected 5 000 overall users from their initial start last year but by January 2021 they already had about 10 000 active users.
The app is also anticipated to soon introduce different types of transport, which include luxury vehicles and electric cars in the future. Taxi drivers are urged to register their services with the ride-hailing company with all documents.
“What we are asking is any document required by law to operate a taxi in this country. It’s something we also need to add drivers to the app. I remember, in the beginning, most drivers were sceptical of giving their information but they eventually gave in and approached us,” added Shiwagala.
A taxi driver, who uses the TaxiConnect services, Fernando Dumeni told New Era he loves the convenience of the app because there are days when there are no customers on the streets but one is guaranteed to make money when using the app.
“You must work fast because you are not the only one receiving notifications of people looking for taxis. One other inconvenience is that far-away taxis can accept the request, which is unfair to those who might be closer to the person seeking a taxi. But overall, it is a beautiful initiative,” shared Dumeni.
He also hinted to this publication that, especially now during the times of curfew, it tends to be busier and they make more money at night as locals hastily want the convenience to go straight home just before the cut off time.