How to Build an Uber-Like App

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‘Uber’ – The word literally means an outstanding or supreme example. True to its definition, Uber has become the supreme example for on-demand applications. When Uber was launched in 2009, it created a Revolution by bringing the demand closer to supply like never before.

Today, Uber has created a universal synonymy with ‘on-demand’, that any new on-demand service for any segment is termed as ‘Uber For X’.

Building an app like Uber

Uber is present in more than 600 cities across 75 different countries. On the other side, there are more than 50000 cities and 195 countries in the world. This gives a lot of room for new players to enter into new markets. In addition to that, these can be local players who challenge Uber in their own geography like Grab does in Singapore and Ola does in India. In short, there is a market that is wide and open for apps and services like Uber.

The first step towards creating a business like Uber is in understanding the dynamics of demand and supply. In addition to that, it is important to create a robust and intuitive application that will be a breeze for the users to use.

The different facets of an Uber-like App:

There are three different entities involved in the functioning of business like Uber. You will need to have a set of users who will use the services, set of drivers who will provide the services and an administrator who will oversee all functionalities of the app from a bird’s eye level. All these three facets deserve different applications or other interfaces of the same applications.

For any application, there would be two different sets of features. The first set is the minimum viable set of features that are required for the app to function as intended. In addition to this, there can be a lot of additional features that make the app more valuable for both the user and the company. This set of features is the advanced features.

Let us look at a few advanced features of the different apps for a service like Uber.

Customer-facing applications

It is to be understood that it is the user-friendliness of the application that contributes to your customer using it. Therefore, the customer-facing app has to be extremely user-friendly and light. Here are the features that should be present on the customer side of the app:

  • Facility to track a ride – the facility to book a ride is expected out of any ride-hailing application. However, there should be an option to track a ride after the user has booked the ride. This tracking should include finding the location of the driver before the pickup, so you can assist the driver in getting to the precise location. It should also feature a facility to share your live status to your near and dear ones as a safety measure. This could also be useful in finding out if the driver is going on the intended route, especially when you are well versed with the directions of your commute.
  • Estimating the ride cost – when there are so many factors like the demand at that time, the traffic and the weather, the fare should not be a surprise to the user after the end of their journey. Taking into consideration all the above factors, the fair estimate should be given at the beginning of the journey itself. This would be helpful for the user in deciding whether or not to choose the ride. For the brand, it speaks volumes about the integrity and transparency that they stand for.
  • History of rides – there are passengers who might use the ride-hailing service on a frequent basis. For these passengers, it would be a helpful feature if they can retrieve the information about all the rides that they have taken so far. This could be useful in establishing proof for their travel, especially in the cases of official reimbursement.
  • Scheduling and advance booking – some of the passengers are so organized and planned that they might know about their travel bill in advance. Your ride-hailing service should have a feature to book rides in advance as a part of the Uber clone This feature will be useful for early morning pickups and scheduling airport rides. This will also ensure that your users are unaffected by the non-availability of vehicles for surge pricing.
  • Multiple payment methods – one of the many aspects in which the world is diversifying is in terms of payment, and this diversity is not just confined to the digital spectrum. Your Uber clone should be able to accept multiple payment methods including but not limited to credit card, debit card, internet banking, mobile wallets, and even cash. This will ensure that your service is versatile and welcoming to all people.
  • Smart wallets – a smart wallet is a specific payment system confined to that particular location. This wallet corresponds with other digital payment modes like debit cards and digital wallets. This kind of payment method ensures that you are never short of the money that you will need to pay. The smart wallet can be programmed to take cash from your digital payment methods if it falls below a certain limit. Additionally, this smart wallet system can also be used to increase loyalty with rewards and discounts.
  • Third-party booking – we live at a time when everyone needs ride-hailing services but not everyone is tech-savvy. There might be a time when you might need to book a cab for someone else. The Uber clone should facilitate the booking of cabs for someone who is not in your current location. This would mean that all correspondence, including the driver details, has to happen with someone else. Your ride-hailing app should have a feature where you can enter the phone number of the person you need to book a ride for. The driver should only receive those details. The payment information alone can be from your end, with the exception of cash payment.
  • Standard destinations – services like Uber have become a part of our daily lifestyle. It might not be a surprise to see someone use ride-hailing services for their daily travel. In such cases, if the app can have a list of favorite pickup points and destinations from history, it will be useful for the passenger to book a quick ride and for the driver to precisely reach the destination.
  • Splitting charges – there are instances when Uber X becomes Uberpool when there are a group of friends! To avoid scenes that might reflect their Monopoly time, it would be a great option to have fare-splitting as a part of the app. This would ensure that there are no hassles in the sharing of fares. If all the friends are Uber users, the split fare can directly be debited from their smart wallet.
  • Panic button – we have reserved the best for the last. Safety has been one of the ongoing concerns for any ride-hailing app. A panic button will go a long distance in establishing the care that you have for your customers. The simple button should be easy to access and locate. Your Uber clone, upon pressing that button, can alert someone in your office and even bypass this step to alert the local authorities. This will make it increasingly appealing, especially for late-night travelers and female passengers.

As discussed earlier, these features are more than just the basic features. They help in making your application and their service more appealing than your competitors. In this market that has a lot of players competing for the same passengers, it will be a great idea for your Uber clone to feature these options.

The Driver-Facing App

The driver-facing app is more like the other half of the entire application. This part of the app has specific features that have everything to do with the actions from the driver’s side. Some of the features include delivery reports, route optimization, quest earnings, and ride canceling.

  • Delivery reports – it is one of the features that also ensures the safety of the passengers. The reports about the driver’s driving will be generated on a weekly or on a monthly basis. Based on the reports Uber can take decisions like firing the driver or making the particular driver a trainer for the newbies.
  • Route optimization – the feature needs a special mention. The maps application optimizes and shows the most efficient route to reach the destination as early as possible. This helps the driver to navigate without any flaws. A feature of this type is a must as it will serve as a point of attraction for all passengers.
  • Quest earning – It is basic human psychology to perform better if there is any kind of push. Quest earning is something on those lines. If the driver has to earn more money they can opt for this feature. The quest is to complete a particular number of rides before a specific time. This feature will definitely create a win-win situation that will have a positive impact on your business.
  • Ride canceling – the system of ride-hailing should be mutually beneficial for both the driver and the passenger. If the passenger delays their arrival, the driver has an option to cancel the ride beyond a particular time threshold. This will ensure that the driver does not spend a lot of time on an unfruitful booking.
  • Advance acceptance – sometimes, the demand might be so high that the request for the next ride will pop up even before the current ride is completed. The Uber clone that you create should have a facility for the driver to accept ride requests even before the completion of the ride that they are currently on.

The Business Model

The goodness of any business does not lie in how fanciful the model looks on paper but in the actual revenue that it can generate. Given this dimension, Uber can be considered one of the most successful business models.

Uber makes money by connecting demand and supply. It earns its revenue by getting a commission from the people who supply a service. It also takes its revenue from the users who are responsible for the demand and unprofitably exploit the services.

An app like Uber generates its revenues from three different sources.

  • Uber takes a commission from the drivers. The commission is fixed at a percentage of the fare of a ride or sometimes, as a percentage of the total revenues earned during the day.
  • Uber also takes subscription charges from customers for opting special services. These services can include monthly ride passes or payments for premium options.
  • If customers cancel at the last minute, especially when the driver is considerably close to the pickup point, Uber charges a cancellation fee.

Cost of developing an app like Uber

As a user, it might be simple for you to download the application, fill up your details and call for a cab. However, looking at the back end and the factors involved in creating an app like Uber is really a big deal. There are different cost factors involved in creating a complete clone of Uber. The factors include the features that you would like to add to your application, the operating systems for which you are creating the app, the technology that you will be using to govern the backend and the database, the resources that you are willing to employee for the development and the upkeeping of the application, and above everything, the cost of marketing the app.

The Smarter Way

There is a lot of Uber clone script that is available in the market. These close of Uber ensure that all the basic features are present and configured perfectly. In addition to that, they offer extreme customizability, so you can add the features that you would want. This kind of approach can assist you in capturing the market faster and with the utmost ease. Also, with the competition, time is a precious resource! Therefore, the quicker you are you hit the market, the greater the profits you will make!

Author Bio

Zoey Parson is a blogger and digital marketing specialist currently working at Turnkeytown who loves to cover the latest trends in technology, app development, social media, geek culture, and more. She has a graduate degree in Mass Communications and previously worked as a producer for a radio show.

How to Build an Uber-Like App

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