Sony has launched a service of hailing taxis in Tokyo. Thus it makes another major entry into the unusual transportation landscape of Japan. There is an app available. One can use the Minna no Taxi’s S.Ride app from today onwards, which can allow users to not use regular taxis. People can make payments through cash, credit card or by way of a digital wallet that is powered by the digital wallet. The S in S.Ride does not stand for Sony.
A press release clearly describes the service to be simple, smart and extremely speedy. Sony says that S.Ride makes use of AI technology to predict if demand would be the highest and accordingly go ahead in dispatching drivers. Last year, Minna no Taxi Corporation was formed by Sony Payment Services, Sony Corp along with six taxi companies. Though, the names of only five companies are mentioned in the press release. The names include the likes of Kokusai and Daiwa, which happens to be two of the biggest operators in Tokyo. Sony has said that the total size of the fleet would go beyond 10,000 cars.
S.Ride is not the first application of its kind in Japan. The dominant chat app, Line had launched a similar type of collaboration. Their collaboration happened to be with leading taxi company Nihon Kotsu back in the year 2015. Unfortunately, their service had come to an end in the year 2018. There is a bigger competitor, which happens to be in to give stiff competition to S.Ride. Now that competitor would be Japan Taxi. This is an application run by Ichiro Kawanabe, the CEO and Chairman of the taxi federation of Japan, Nihon Kotsu. Uber happens to be a small player in Japan. It offers only premium black cars in Tokyo.
Francis is an Author at Times Slate. He holds the responsibilities of covering Science and Technology news. Francis loves reading books and watching movies.