GoCatch, a free mobile app that connects taxi drivers directly with passengers, has made CEO Andrew Campbell popular with travelers looking to flag down a ride. Not so much, however, with the operators of the antiquated dispatch system that GoCatch bypasses.
Dennis sat down with Andrew at Mastering SAP Technologies 2013 to get a better feel for why taxi drivers should use his system rather than relying on what’s worked for decades. In addition to the outdated radio calls, Andrew explains, mobile dispatch terminals cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to install, and dispatch algorithms aren’t always efficient.
Thanks to a grant from the New South Wales government, Andrew’s group worked with a consortium that included Microsoft, Blackberry, Google and Nokia – resulting in a smartphone app that currently works on four different platforms.
Where does SAP HANA fit into the game? With the massive amount of data that GoCatch processes, HANA is a natural fit. GoCatch was also invited into the HANA Startup Program. As Andrew sees it, SAP has the lightest technology for his use case, and also represents a great channel to market.
:36 GoCatch, a smartphone app, connects taxi drivers with passengers in real time
1:28 Old radio dispatch systems are expensive and sometimes use faulty algorithms
2:12 Bypassing the system makes GoCatch popular with customers
2:29 NSW government funded a consortium of Microsoft, Blackberry, Google and Nokia
3:42 SAP HANA helps GoCatch adjust to surges in data and take corrective action
4:46 Partnership with HANA helps to achieves real-world outcomes – including revenue
Andrew took a few minutes to demo the highlight of his app for Dennis. Andrew starts with the driver application and puts through a job. Within a few seconds, a passenger icon shows up on the on-screen map, and the driver can accept the job – quickly, before another cabbie gets the fare:
:22 Andrew shows how the driver-side application gets notified of a possible fare
1:27 The on-screen map displays the taxi as it approaches to pick up the passenger
Disclosure: This video is part of a project commissioned by SAP to amplify startup activity and developer innovation on HANA, mobile, and the SAP cloud.