Apps That Make Sense: Taxi Sharing

Apps That Make Sense: Taxi Sharing

By: Shelly Kramer
May 30, 2011

Weeels, Taxi Sharing Made Easy

I travel. A lot. And when I find tricks, tools and apps that make it easier for me, I’m all for them. I’m also immersed in the world of mobile marketing, so looking at what others are doing in the space is always at the top of my list.

And when I’m stuck in an airport with nothing to do, which is often, well, I head straight to the Interwebs to see what new bright, shiny things I can find to play with. Or write about. Or buy.

An interesting new find is app called Weeels. Their description in the app store is simple:

Weeels is a fast, easy, cheap and efficient way for New Yorkers to call cabs and share rides with other passengers.

But it’s not just about ride sharing (and I think the folks at Weeels need to emphasize that more in their description in the app store and in their marketing efforts).

Weeels is also a socially-responsible initiative, aiming to cut down on carbon emissions, congestion and waste. Their tagline is “Engineering vehicle efficiency via systems design.” I work with engineers – I like it already. And watching this video made me like them even more, because they made me laugh:

Weeels Infomercial from Weeels on Vimeo.

When you think about it, a city filled with cabs occupied by one person, many of whom are headed to the same destinations from the same places is not exactly the most efficient system. As a green gal, I’m drawn to concepts like this. As a social gal, I’m likewise drawn to Weeels.

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Weeels is DIY mass transit. Push a button and get an affordable and convenient ride anywhere in the city. Easy to understand. Easy to do. Easy to benefit from. And the eco-friendly part of this concept mitigates the inconvenience of sharing a ride with someone else.

Weeels is only in New York City right now, but I hope that either they expand to other markets, or that others develop similar apps. To my way of thinking, there’s not much of a downside to reduced wait times, travel costs, carbon emissions, gas costs and congestion. And, from a business model standpoint, it’s really smart that their target audience is not only end-users, but also transportation providers, campuses, municipalities, businesses and the like.

Considering that mobile apps are developed at an astonishing rate but that a whopping 26% of them are downloaded and used only once, apps like this that actually give you a reason to use them on a weekly, or even daily, basis make a lot of sense. Now, of course, they need to market the heck out of the app. Another little step that so many developers overlook.

What about you? Have you heard of Weeels? Does it sound like something you’d use? Would my NYC-dwelling friends consider using this app? I’d love to hear what you think.

What say you? Do you see apps like this in your future? They sure seem to make sense to me.

  • Really cool app for cities! I just have two comments. First off you must be 21 to enter the Interwebs young lady. Was their no bouncer demanding ID? I will have to have this fixed. Secondly I bet more than 26% of Apps are only used once. Media Post recently included Angry Birds in an article stating it was downloaded 42 million times and is played for 125 years worth of time per day. Which comes out to only 1.5 minutes per day per download. So most aren’t being played. Then this week Ad Week said it has been downloaded 200million times but failed to included how much time was played (I am skeptical about this number but you know me!)

    There is another App I downloaded but have not checked out yet called Waze that is a crowdsourced traffic and police app that seems it could have value for city drivers to help reduce time spent driving which also would equal less emissions.