CAPE TOWN – A well-known venture capitalist and technologist once said: “ Software is eating the world”.
What he simply meant is that more and more major businesses and industries are being run on software and delivered as online services – from movies to agriculture to national defense.
Now software is getting ready to eat the major SA public transport industry, minibus taxis, in the form of Uber Bus. This week Uber, the worlds leading tech transport company, chose to launch a minibus taxi service within the African continent in Egypt. This is the first for Uber in the world. It’s a move that should serve as a concern the local taxi industry, here’s why.
Future of minibus Taxis
Firstly, Uber has studied how the minibus industry operates and they have realised that there’s money to be made within the industry. Secondly, the transport technology company has a clear view of what the future of public transport looks like. Thirdly, Uber has done it before (to cabs) and they’ve got the confidence to tackle the next mode of transport. Uber claimed in its announcement of the service that the service will enable the user to request a ride through the app and they will find other passengers travelling in the same direction so that the user can get to the destination with fewer stops. Unending stops are a major frustration for current traditional minibus taxi users.