How much does it cost to create an Uber type application?

Taxi business has been turned upside down in all countries where Uber operates. Why did this happen in Poland as well?
Because Uber is still controversial, both legally and fiscally.
Because when Uber starts operating in a given city, they invest a lot of money so the cost of services offered is much lower than at other providers.
Besides, Uber drivers are accused of working as taxi drivers without a license which resulted in a conflict between taxi drivers and Uber drivers. The conflict was additionally escalated by the media.

So, what do itCraft and Uber have in common?
Let us explain.

What is Uber?

Uber is a mobile application that connects passengers with drivers. Uber started as a start-up in March 2009 and was created by Garrett Camp (the founder of StumbleUpon) and Travis Kalanick. It debuted in Poland in 2014, so relatively recently. It has been eight years since Uber made its debut and within this time it has become world’s most valuable start-up!


From the user’s perspective Uber is a perfect solution. You don’t have to wait for connection, the driver knows where to pick you up, you see him coming, he comes quickly and you do not need cash to pay for the ride. What is more, you know who you will travel with and after every ride you evaluate your driver – then you can be sure the atmosphere will be friendly (drivers evaluated less than 4.6 are automatically removed from the list of Uber’s partners), and travelling with a group of friends who use the app you can share the cost.

“Uber” is the future, not only in the transportation branch, but in many others. UberEATS are becoming more and more popular in many countries. itCraft has an application of this type in its portfolio, but in a different branch – we introduced the HomeDoctor application, known as “Uber for Doctors”.

Uber

Idea + itCraft = Uber type app

We can develop and implement Uber type apps. We regularly receive enquiries (12 so far) regarding development of such apps, be it related to transportation or other areas. That is why we decided to show what an Uber type app consists of and which elements impact on the total cost of the application development.

The Uber type app is a complex venture that consists of a number of components. See details below:

1. A native mobile iOS application for passengers – as a minimum it must be able to:

  • register,
  • log,
  • create payment profile,
  • integrate with the credit card payment system (or with other mobile payment systems),
  • select configuration and order a transportation service,
  • monitor and carry out a ride,
  • integrate with a map system (e.g. Google Maps),
  • view order history,
  • use a promotion system (promo codes, inviting friends),
  • evaluate drivers,
  • contact a driver,
  • offer user assistance system,
  • offer extra settings for the user’s account.


2. A native mobile Android application for passengers – an application for the other mobile platform, offering the same scope of operation as above.

3. A native mobile iOS application for Uber drivers – as a minimum, the application must be able to:

  • receive orders,
  • report for rides ordered by passengers at a given time,
  • receive payments (e.g. in case of the MyTaxi app, tha passenger can pay cash),
  • receive payments by a payment card, or a card connected to the passenger application (on the Polish market the MyTaxi has a huge advantage over Uber),
  • calculate the route to the destination (Google Maps or another navi app can be used),
  • show history of rides along with a day summary,
  • showpassenger’s profile and their contact data.


4. A native mobile Android application for Uber drivers – an application for the other mobile platform, offering the same scope of operation as above.

5. A web application for passengers – an application that gives passengers access to settings of their account and to the user’s profile, payment configuration, history of rides and ride details.

6. A web application for drivers – an application that gives drivers access to settings of the driver’s profile, settlement management and to history of all rides.

7. Administrator panel – a web application to manage the whole system and access selected functions for the passenger support department and for drivers.

8. Server application (backend – database, API). This is the engine of the whole system where all user data is saved (database) and the system logic. The component issues the so called Application Programming Interface (API) for the other components. The backend is a central point of the system that connects other elements. The whole communication between mobile applications and web panels goes through this component. A server application must have the following features:

  • rights and security systems,
  • central database backup system,
  • API module – for all the other components of the system,
  • database – in case of a big, scalable solution, NoSQL database seems to be the best solution, like Google Cloud Datastore. The database stores all the user data, their rides, payments, etc.,
  • application business logic layer and process logic – the element of the system that controls all processes, their configuration and logic,
  • settlement and internet payment integration component – responsible for integration with external internet transaction systems. Communication with this system is appropriately secured and uses verified mechanizms to protect credit cards data, etc.

Uber

There are many components and so creating an Uber type application is not an easy thing. Of course there are applications that can be used as models, but still a lot of work is required to implement this type of application. This is the reason why this type of an app is not that popular and there are relatively few of them.
It is hard to say what budget would be required to create an application of this type, but an app comparable to MyTaxi or Uber costs more than $100 000 net.
The cost includes specification, graphic layouts, app prototype, implementation of all components, internal tests, acceptance tests and application implementation support.

We have to remember that after the app has been created it must be advertised in order to reach customers. Looking at the companies already present in the market it is easy to notice that convincing customers to use our offer requires considerable expenses. At Uber, for every recommendation a given user and us, who recommend, receive 15 PLN to spend for a ride. MyTaxi is even more aggressive and offers 50 PLN for the first ride for every new user invited. Besides, a number of promotions like the price -50% in July for rides after rush hours. Such actions aim at creating a group of customers but at the same time require considerable expenses to encourage customers to use our services.

Uber, MyTaxi, iTaxi – what’s next?

That’s the question! Looking at apps related to transportation we also have the MyTaxi operating in a few of Poland’s biggest cities, or iTaxi, which is Poland’s biggest taxi network. There are more and more Polish cities where you can order a taxi through a mobile app. It is worth mentioning that MyTaxi is a German company, while iTaxi is Polish.

Research says that within the years to come we will remotely order more and more services and this is the reason why numerous apps through which food or cleaning services can be ordered appear.

So which Uber type application will be the next hit?
We hope it will be your app!

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