Quick as an ‘Arro’

By Patrick Kearns

 

Screenshot_2015-08-25-16-46-20Hailing a taxi in New York City the old-fashioned way is becoming a lost art with the rise of e-hailing. But that doesn’t mean the iconic yellow taxi is about to fade from city streets. Arro, a Long Island City-based taxi app that utilizes technology also developed in Long Island City by Creative Mobile Technologies, is combining the two, giving drivers and riders a safe way to continue doing business.

“Arro is a taxi app and a startup tech company born and raised in Queens,” said Michael Woloz of Connelly McLaughlin and Woloz, a spokesman for the app. “Arro’s developed cutting-edge tech that pairs passengers with yellow or green taxi cabs. No fees, no surge pricing.”

The app utilizes the technology already in 8,500 taxis that was developed in Long Island City by Creative Mobile Technologies (CMT). CMT has installed its product, dubbed FREEdom Solution, in cabs across multiple countries, 40 cities and 26 states.

Its goal is to save taxi owners thousands in costs upfront and provide a new way to drive revenue to existing cab companies. It gives them an opportunity to stay afloat with the myriad startup taxi-for-hire services that contract drivers.

Screenshot_2015-08-25-16-45-27The app works simply: users input their payment method then start booking cabs. Woloz said that Arro has two very distinct advantages over competing apps like Lyft and Uber which utilizes for-hire drivers as opposed to city-regulated cabs, including no surge pricing and the safety and security of riding in a city-regulated vehicle.

It also allows passengers that hailed a cab the old-fashioned way to pay right from the app without having to find their wallet or make sure they have enough cash.

“A high volume of yellow and green taxis can respond to passengers who would like to e-hail a metered yellow or green taxi that they know is not going to surge price them,” Woloz said. “And that they know provides a safe and secure ride, as yellow taxis have been doing for 100 years.”

According to Woloz, Arro has the lowest wait time of any taxi app and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive so far. He said that passengers love the convenience and novelty of having a city cab come pick them up in front of their office or home, even if it’s on a side-street in a quiet tree-lined Queens neighborhood.

It’s not just the community of riders that have embraced the technology either, but the drivers, who now have a new avenue to connect with passengers at all times of the day. It doesn’t force them to go out seeking passengers or congregate in the busiest parts of the city.

Screenshot_2015-08-25-16-45-31“It’s really a powerful tool for not only passengers, but drivers as well,” Woloz said. “Drivers are embracing Arro in a way that I’ve never seen the driver community embrace a particular technology before.”

Currently, Arro is available only in New York City, but expects to expand soon to San Francisco, Chicago, Boston and Washington, D.C.

Woloz said that Arro provides yellow and green cab drivers with more opportunity than other professional drivers in the city while allowing them to continue to do exactly what they’ve been doing all along: legally pick up passengers. “What Arro has done for drivers is pretty incredible,” he added.

Another thing riders and drivers can take solace in is that the technology is as local as local gets, with both the app and the cab technology coming from Queens’ new tech hub in Long Island City.

For many years, everyone’s associated Long Island City with the yellow cab industry. There are a multitude of side streets packed with parked cabs and a number of the city’s cab operations are headquartered in the neighborhood. But with rapid change and growth happening, a new type of community is beginning to call Long Island City home: the technology industry. There may even be a new boon, with the opening of the Cornell Technology Campus at Roosevelt Island opening in 2017.

“LIC has long been a hub for the taxi industry and it is now becoming a hub for the tech industry,” Woloz said. “We’ve bridged both of those great Queens industries.”

Short URL: http://itsqueens.com/?p=1315

Posted by on Dec 10 2015. Filed under Featured Articles, Technology, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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