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Goa App-Based Cab Service’ GoaMiles’ Faces Backlash, Welcomes Ola and Uber

Goa's private taxi associations have been at loggerheads with GoaMiles, accusing the latter of encroaching on their livelihood

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Goa's private taxi associations have been at loggerheads with GoaMiles, accusing the latter of encroaching on their livelihood. Wikimedia Commons

Goa’s only app-based cab service GoaMiles, which is currently facing a backlash from associations of privately-owned taxis, has welcomed pan-India cab aggregating services like Ola and Uber to the coastal state, stating that such technology-based initiatives would encourage competition and help to provide good service to the customers.

“GoaMiles is not opposing Ola or Uber. That is the decision of the government at the end of the day. We are very comfortable with that,” Hemant Prabhu Chodnekar, Operations Manager of GoaMiles told IANS on Saturday.

“We support technology, we believe in technology,” Chodnekar also said, when asked if GoaMiles would welcome setting up of Ola and Uber taxi services in Goa.

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Ola taxi services were introduced in Goa in 2014 but were soon stopped by the state Transport Department following protests by local taxi operators. Flickr

Ola taxi services were introduced in Goa in 2014 but were soon stopped by the state Transport Department following protests by local taxi operators.

Goa’s private taxi associations have been at loggerheads with GoaMiles, accusing the latter of encroaching on their livelihood.

In the last one year, more than a dozen FIRs have been filed by GoaMiles taxi drivers, accusing private taxi operators of assault and giving threats.

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Photo shows an exterior view of the headquarters of Uber in San Francisco. VOA

Chief Minister Pramod Sawant has also said that any further violence from the private taxi operators would result in strict action by the Goa government.

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Several attempts by the state government to install and implement a fare meter system have failed, even as members of taxi lobby have also attacked tour coach buses ferrying foreign tourists, accusing tour operators of depriving them of business.

The state also attracts more than seven million domestic tourists every year, who often face hardship due to overpriced and irregular public transports system. (IANS)

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Uber Incorporates Several Changes to its App for Drivers to Improve their Experience

Earlier in May, ride-hailing drivers in cities across the US went on strike to protest unfair pay, poor working conditions and lack of transparency from Uber

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Photo shows an exterior view of the headquarters of Uber in San Francisco. (VOA)

Amid rising tensions over workers rights, global ride-hailing major Uber has incorporated several changes to its app for drivers to improve the experience for both newer as well as seasoned drivers.

Uber is testing out several new features for drivers, including a scrolling feed of promotions and gamified ‘quests’ that would be viewable before drivers sign in to start driving, The Verge reported on Thursday.

For newer drivers, there would be a ‘simulated trip’ to walk them through the virtual steps of their first ride before they commit to actually picking up passengers.

The update on Uber’s app comes at a time when ride-hailing drivers are supporting legislation in California that would reclassify them as employees rather than contractors.

The app would also give notifications to drivers for longer than average trips.

Uber app.

When drivers need to cancel a trip, the app would allow them to specify the reasons why – while a new feature would automatically accept the next trip to help the drivers earn the ‘consecutive trip’ bonus paid out by Uber, the report said.

Critics have dismissed these ‘gamified’ features as psychological tricks meant to keep drivers on the road longer.

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However, Uber argues that these features are popular with drivers because they often put more money in their pockets.

Earlier in May, ride-hailing drivers in cities across the US went on strike to protest unfair pay, poor working conditions and lack of transparency from Uber. (IANS)