By Madison Alworth
Yellow cab drivers in New York City have been suffering, and transport entrepreneur Daniel Iger thinks now is the time for change.
"The yellows need to be more competitive," he said Monday in an interview on Cheddar.
For cab drivers, what used to be an annual salary of around $45,000 in 2013 now averages a mere $29,000. Chalk that up to the effect of Uber and Lyft. And as a result, the New York City Council has voted to cap the number of for-hire vehicles on the streets and halt the issuing of any new for-hire vehicle licenses for at least 12 months.
But ride-sharing services in New York are still one smartphone tap away, which is why Iger hopes to make yellow cabs just as accessible with his new app Waave. The app allows users to book cabs from their phone with set prices and, he hopes, can boost the taxi business in the saturated for-hire market.
"Waave is the first application which is allowed to charge upfront pricing," he said. "That means no more meter, and you run your app the same as you are used to for your ride-share vehicles. You have an upfront price, and it's exactly what you pay."
Waave also promises surge-free pricing as another incentive for would-be consumers.
The company has eliminated the meter system, but Iger insisted that drivers' earnings will be equal to that of a metered ride.
"We have an algorithm, and we calculate the fare based off of traffic and distance. We are always in the same transparent pricing like the meter is. We are exactly the same," he said.
Waave was approved by the the Taxi and Limousine Commission of New York last week for a two-year pilot program.
For full interview click here.