Taxi Companies Launch ‘The Ride’ iOS App to Battle Uber

With the popularity of Uber leaving local taxi companies in the dust, the latter have joined forces to launch The Ride for iOS and Android today. Created in part with Toronto-based CellWand—the company behind #TAXI service (Pound Taxi)—the app allows users to hail local taxi cabs, which sit at just over 6,000 at launch.

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The Ride provides similar features to Uber, such as finding a nearby taxi, tracking rides and also rating drivers. The company stresses standard taxi prices mean “no surge charges at any time,” referring to Uber’s prices that increase when demand is high. The company also details “every driver is fully trained, licensed and insured,” shots fired at UberX, the latter’s ridesharing option driven by regular citizens in their private vehicles, deemed unsafe by some.

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On top of allowing ‘e-hailing’ a taxi, the app also provides local transit options along with estimated cost and travel time.

Nick Quain, co-founder and CEO, CellWand, said in a statement  “The Ride is Canada’s ultimate transportation solution because it includes every taxi company and combines access to all available public transit options, map directions, and carshare locations across Canada, with just a few taps within the app.”

The Ride says it works everywhere in Canada but charges a $2 convenience fee or $1 for connecting to live dispatch, if e-hailing is not available in your area. For now, the app also lacks a major feature of Uber—in-app payments, which the company says is “coming soon”. In the meantime, users will have to pay cash or credit to taxi drivers the traditional way.

Click here to download The Ride for iOS in the App Store. Let us know what you think of it.

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  • MrXax

    This is the correct way to try and stem the Uber tide, not those ridiculous and dangerous protests.

  • Tim

    Can I really pay at least 30% more + a $2 convenience fee to get where I want to go in a poorly maintained taxi!?!? Where do I sign!?

  • Corey Beazer

    “The Ride says it works everywhere in Canada but charges a $2 convenience fee”
    – Yea… thats gonna make people want to use it.

  • hub2

    And the last time I took a taxi using a credit card was another $1 or $2 extra. So $3-4 extra just to use this with credit card, on top of the already-more-expensive taxi rates.

  • Michal

    just install the app… but bring cash

  • 1His_Nibs1

    Sorry, but with the already exorbitant fares taxi’s charge I (and I’m sure others) sure don’t want to pay more even if it is only $2! Perhaps the taxi companies should absorb this cost (without passing it on to the consumer) in an effort to attract more customers instead of deterring them. I only take taxis when I have absolutely no other alternative. I hope Vancouver gets Uber in the near future. If taxi cabs & their companies can’t evolve and change their antiquated business model to suit today’s consumer needs then just as in the animal kingdom, if you don’t adapt & evolve, you go extinct.

  • Bafoon

    agreed – people are missing the point here. As consumers we shouldn’t have strong brand loyalty for any one service because that in turn leads to degradation of service quality and plateauing of inventiveness.

    The whole uber introduction has been a kick in the teeth (and bloated tummies) of a lazy and outdated service industry. That new tools and service adds on are being added on is a huge plus for us as a consumer as this adds choice.

    In addition this adds accountability back into the equation – where hospitality and QOS for each taxi ride means something again. By rating these taxi drivers, we’re letting our voices being heard.

    Of course I haven’t tried the app, but from a feature sheet perspective Version 1 looks fairly good.

  • Chris Kim

    They really should have waited to launch until they had credit card in-app payments worked out… That’s one of the biggest advantages of Uber (especially in cities like Toronto that have a long history of the “credit card machine being broken”).

    Also the convenience fee is just ridiculous – I’m not sure which cities have “e-hailing”, but assuming you have to pay the $2 fee, and that city has Uber, who would use this app?!

  • alphs22

    So… more expensive, extra fees, no in-app payments, for the same dirty cabs and rude drivers.

    This is a joke, right?

  • ipostic

    If only their App let you see if your city is supported without signing up for the service. Also, no FB sign in option? I deleted the app after seeing that Ihave to type in all teh fields and sign up just to see if my city is supported. Sounds like first world problem but if they want to complete with Uber – they need to solve First world problem.

  • Mathieu Wacowich

    Realized there was a $2 fee per ride book applied to my phone bill… wish I didn’t sign up… ugh

  • Tim

    I can say that in Montreal at least, we’re a “hail a cab” city in many parts. One of the drawbacks of Uber, I find, is having to book a ride when there are often a bunch of taxis speeding by. That still doesn’t stop me from using Uber. I prefer the service and the cost to cabs. As such this app offers no value to me. Not being able to book a cab through an app was never something I wanted from taxis since their only advantage is the ability to walk out to a busy street and flag one down on a moments notice.

  • definingsound

    Applied to the cell phone bill? Oh my… that’s not very attractive. I’ll keep my transportation costs separate from my phone costs if at all possible. On the other hand, if I had a company phone…