Taxi sir? I'm already there...
There is a new initiative within the taxi domain in New York, designed to make it easier for taxi drivers to be ‘in the right place at the right time’. A start-up called Revmax, based in the Brooklyn district of the city, has developed a platform which will advise drivers where to be, especially when there are major events (sport, concert…) which will lead to a high number of people looking for a ride. The platform is based on the philosophy that a computer using data will be able to better predict where to go than a driver’s instinct.
The company has collected data from Uber and Lyft and then added supplementary data which will enable demand to be predicted. This includes such elements as hotel occupancy, restaurant, airport and train arrivals, upcoming events... The software seeks out emerging patterns, and feeds a platform which can thus predict where drivers should go for the best likelihood of picking up a passenger.
Quoted by the ‘Curbed’ website, Revmax CEO, Jonathan Weekley says: “There’s a blatant, obvious need for a routing service. There’s a segment of drivers who think they know the right place to go. When you combine simple statistics and machine learning, you can definitely route a vehicle much more efficiently. If you route vehicles that don’t have passengers, you can dramatically increase the overall fleet utilization”.
The company is believed to be working on a project for the New York City Taxi & Limousine commission. This will start with an analysis and may lead on to a concrete system later. Revmax’s own simulations are said by the website to increase fleet usage from around 50% to 70%.
(Image: Essential New York City Guide) | 22/05/2017 | Tim Harrup