What Does it Take to Develop an App like Uber – Taxi Booking App?


Nasrullah Patel

Senior editor

Parul Saxena

Chief editor

Last updated: August 5, 2021

A couple of common questions I am being asked these days are “How much it costs to build a taxi app like Uber?” and “What is it about Uber that people love so much: UI or UX?

Well, one thing is for sure; there is an utmost growing demand for taxi booking system apps like Uber across the globe. With a couple of modifications to Uber app and business model, there are some businesses that are trying hard to survive while the others are just shutting their operations down.

Taxi booking app

Today, in this post, will see the costs, technology, go-to strategies, etc. that made what Uber is currently.

How Uber Works?

We all know that Uber is one of the famous on-demand taxi-hailing apps preferred by millions due to its easy-to-use user interface as well as job opportunities. Since its launch in 2012, Uber has been providing excellent taxi services by enabling customers to book a cab with just a tap on their smartphone.

With presence in over 83 countries and monthly 40 million rides, Uber provides 30-50% comparatively cheaper prices than conventional taxis which makes the industry call the Uber’s effect to the market as “Disruptive.” Probably, this is the reason why many other taxi businesses such as Hailo, Lyft, etc. have followed the footsteps of Uber.

Important features of Passenger App:

  • Sign up? login page: One of the easiest ways is letting your customers sign up or log in to social media accounts.
  • Taxi booking interface: A screen where the customer provides his or her pickup and destination details and hail a taxi instantly.
  • The fare estimation lets you know the approximate cost of the ride from point A to point B.
  • Customers can leave the feedback about the ride, the driver, vehicle, etc.
  • The feasibility to able to call the driver for the better understanding of the location.
  • Multiple payment options such as credit/debit cards, cash, etc.
  • Keeps the customer informed of the booking progress and required info on the car number, model, etc.

Important features of Driver App:

  • At the time of registration, drivers ought to provide their vehicle details such as license, Taxi number, etc.
  • They will be notified whenever there’s a new taxi booking request and based on their availability, they can accept or reject the booking request.
  • The GPS will suggest the fast and best route to reach the destination on time.
  • Provides the estimation of the cost of the ride with discounts, if any.

Now, let’s get into the technology stack.

What are the technologies that Uber- Taxi Booking App is based on?

  • Geolocation

When Uber first started, the founders in-depth wanted to understand the specification of Android and iOS geolocation features. Of course, the technology has got much better than what we had back in 2010. It has now become extremely easier to get info about the specifics of location features. Let’s dig into more details so that you can build your own app like Uber.

Uber relies on the following mapping and geolocation features:

1. Identify user’s location

For iOS, in order to locate a customer’s location, the app utilizes CoreLocation framework. This framework offers classes and protocols to find out and schedule location delivery and direct location details to the server. In addition to that, the framework allows the app to determine geographic regions and observe the customer’s device movements.

And for the Android user base, the app was designed utilizing Google’s Location APIs which can intellectually handle underlying location technology at the same time meeting various development requires when executing location-based features.

2. Provides driving directions

The app shows exact point-to-point directions on a map so that the customer can reach his or her destination on time and for that, MapKit is used for iOS users and Google Maps is used for Android devices.

3. Integrates with mapping software

The new Google Maps application is loaded with fully-functional features which include lane guidance, better offline maps, and integration with Uber. However, Google Maps is not the thing that Uber has been utilizing. Reportedly, Uber has acquired mapping companies to enhance logistics. And why wouldn’t they? After all, they indeed have won customers’ hearts by providing impeccable on-demand taxi services.

  • A quick recap of technologies

Programming languages for backend: PHP, Node.js, Java, Ruby on Rails, and Python.

GPS: OpenStreetMap for Android and iOS devices.

Platform-specific tools: Google Maps for Android and CoreLocation framework or MapKit.

Payment gateway options: All credit/debit cards, PayPal, Paytm, cash, etc.

  • The go-to-market strategy

When Uber first launched in 2010, they had no customers. Soon after 6 months of their launch, they had almost 6,000 customers and had completed nearly 20, 000 rides. So in order to attract both their customers and riders, in other words, they needed to handle everything.

Uber first started its operations in San Francisco as they targeted to enhance the quality of life of its people. They did a decent marketing among the tech community by hosting and sponsoring tech-related events and offering participants free rides.

Pretty soon, people who didn’t like the services of conventional taxi booking companies, spoke about Uber and its services on social media forums to tell other people about this efficient taxi booking app.

No doubt that Uber had an excellent go-to-market strategy. But the sad thing about wonderful strategies is that you cannot repeat them. So if you were to build taxi booking app like Uber and offer services in San Francisco or Los Angeles majorly targeting tech communities, then most probably your app will go unnoticed. You certainly require a different line to start your story.

So how much does it cost to build a Taxi Booking App like Uber?

It would be quite a complex task to provide an exact number without knowing the product specifications and technicalities. You might be thinking that mobile app development companies should know the numbers, but what you need to understand is that nobody can give an accurate number based on incomplete details you provide.

The application cost generally depends on:

  • What platforms do you want to release your app (iOS, Android, Windows)?
  • What kind of features and functionalities should your app have?
  • Do you need a fully-functional app or just an MVP to check your concept first?

Bottom Line

A normal taxi booking system application will cost you nearly $25, 000 – $45, 000 while a more sophisticated and systematic app like Uber can go up to a maximum of $150, 000 – $200, 000. Of course, in exceptional cases like TNW, an app like Uber can cost $1 million to $1.5 million.

Patel Nasrullah is a co-founder at one of the Top mobile application development company USA, Peerbits. He devotes his time in inspiring young leaders to take the leap of faith. With the experience of 10 years in Web and App development, he now gives full attention to the enterprise by offering mobility solutions about the strategic planning and execution.

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