Search

New Old Street app to challenge Uber and black cabs

PUBLISHED: 14:35 11 June 2014 | UPDATED: 14:35 11 June 2014

Funryde screenshots

Funryde screenshots

Archant

A Tech City start-up has joined the assault on London’s cabbies, advertising fares that are 70 per cent cheaper.

Bassem Barake, co-founder of Funryde Bassem Barake, co-founder of Funryde

Funryde is a mobile phone app which matches drivers with those looking for cheap travel in the city.

Its emergence coincides with the feud between cabbies and US tech giant Uber which has seen the London Taxi Drivers’ Association (LTDA) bring the capital’s streets to a standstill today over claims the company is illegally using a meter system.

The Funryde app, which launched in February, charges an average of less than £1 a mile, but its founders say taking on black cab drivers is simply business.

“Personally I don’t know why the black cab drivers are so angry,” said Bassem Barake, co-founder of Funryde.

“The people who work for Uber are licensed taxi drivers, you already have a lot of big minicab companies in London, Uber have just taken control.

“I think our app will make taxi drivers angry but it’s a totally different experience.

“You might be picked up by a doctor or an engineer and you can meet new people and talk about your interests.

Match

“We’re even looking at using Facebook to match people with similar interests or mutual friends.”

The app, which is free to download, sees drivers thoroughly vetted with serious or persistent road offenders unable to act as chauffeurs.

Funryde also has a rating system for both drivers and passengers, which allows other users to see how reliable they are.

Drivers are still covered by their insurance policy, as they’re are only subsidising the cost of petrol, rather than making profit.

“At the moment the drivers are not allowed to make any money, which is what makes it so cheap,” said Mr Barake.

“Our end goal is to make a deal with an insurance company so that the drivers are able to make a profit margin, so that we can attract more drivers.

“You can have 100,000 passengers but if you don’t have enough drivers it doesn’t work.”

Funryde only has about 15 drivers so far, despite the app reaching more than 1,000 downloads.

Former Mayor of Islington, Cllr Rupert Perry, has been a black cab driver for nine years. He said apps like Uber and Funryde may be cheaper than black cabs at certain points of the day but could not compete at peak times.

‘Trusted’

“There will be a market for these sort of companies with people wanting to save a bit of money and founders wanting to become the next 
online billionaire,” he said.

“Good luck to them. But black cabs are still the safest and most trusted option. You have a licensed driver who knows London like the back of their hand.”

Latest Islington News Stories

Yesterday, 13:01

A Finsbury pub has sacked off all meat and dairy to go 100 per cent vegan.

Yesterday, 10:08

A huge ceramic tile installation will grace the new City North development next to Finsbury Park station when it opens in early 2020.

Yesterday, 09:57

A BMW went up in flames this morning after a nearby gas cylinder was knocked over and caught fire in Offord Road, Barnsbury.

Mon, 17:25

If you supported Arsenal or had an N5 postcode in 1988, it’s almost certain you’ll remember the “Battle of Highbury”.

Mon, 12:52

A brave six-year-old girl foiled a kidnapper who tried to snatch her friends.

Mon, 12:11

The government has said maintenance work at Pentonville prison will continue as normal after contractor Carillion went into liquidation.

Mon, 10:09

An end is finally in sight after two years of closures on the Gospel Oak to Barking Overground line, which has reopened today for what commuters hope is the last time.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Wondering what the weather has in store for us this weekend? Watch our three-minute Met Office video forecast.

PROMOTED CONTENT

“With teenagers there’s a lot of banter, and you can really establish a relationship. You have to trust teenagers to make their own decisions.”

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now