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Analysis and Review of GrabTaxi as a Mobile Application for Urban Society: A Survey

Ana Ainul Syamsi S., Muhammad Rien Suryatama Idrus

Informatics Engineering, Universitas Bakrie,

Along with the development of the times that continue to be followed by the development of
technology, urban society increasingly familiar with mobile applications that are used to
facilitate many activities, even for booking a taxi with more ease. One application that is
currently popular is GrabTaxi, which is a mobile computing applications for real-time booking a
taxi which is believed to be more safe, easy, and accurate. Accordingly, in this paper we conduct
to analyze and provide a review of the application is based on a survey of 51 respondents with 23
active respondents GrabTaxi users. As a complement, will be presented as well, some of the
features that passengers are expected to be developed further.

1. Introduction
Mobile Computing became one of the technologies that are needed by today's urban
society, a society that is typical of modern industrial civilization and heterogeneous in
cultural tradition, that emphasizes secular values, and that is individualized rather than
integrated [1], especially smartphones. Even the use of active mobile subscription in
Indonesia now has reached 281. 962. 665 where the total number of population is 251, 160,
124, with 51% urban society [3].
The high number is due to the Smartphone can help facilitate most of the activities of the
community in various aspects such as scheduling, mobile booking, location tracking,
searching information, mobile communication (social media), and etc. Especially in an urban
society that concern to the modernization and keep up with technology.

The phenomenon that is prevalent seen today are users keep their mobile devices nearby,
check them frequently, and occasionally use multiple devices at once. Even today the taxi
booking can be done by utilizing mobile technology, more precisely the implementation of a
real time booking that currently can be done using applications on smartphones like
GrabTaxi application.
In this paper, we will discuss more specifically about GrabTaxi as one of the real-time
booking application that is being discussed and began popularly used by urban society, such
as in Jakarta.
There are three pillars that once majored in GrabTaxi development, namely security,
certainty, speed that also become the developer principles to help solve customer problems.
GrabTaxi also has several features, one of which is a system of review, that become a
motivation for a taxi driver to work properly. With this, users can also feel more secure
against the performance and security of the taxi drivers were chosen, as the form of the
solution provided GrabTaxi among the many crimes that use taxi media. Features 'Share My
Ride' it allows customer to tell customer's friends and relatives that they were take a taxi so
that they can know if the customer reach the destination or not.
GrabTaxi says these features will gradually make the user more trust this application. Driver
also has an interesting feature that could encourage them to work better. Users are willing to
pay more to get a better chance to get a taxi. This could have paid more encouraging taxi
drivers to want to pick up users who are in difficult or remote locations and / or are in a state
of traffic jam.
Income earned by a driver who has joined GrabTaxi get an increase in income ranging from
30 to 300 percent. This application can help their economic problems, and in other words, to
solve real problems. Invites taxi drivers to want to use this service is not easy though as we
mentioned above that the popularity of smartphones in Indonesia is increasing rapidly. But
still a lot of taxi drivers who do not have or use a smartphone. To overcome this, GrabTaxi

smartphone lend to the driver, who then can they be taught using the installment of GrabTaxi
applications [4].
2. Mobile Computing
Mobile Guide
Demand guide is needed by a lot of people in this technological era. Most visitors or
tourists come to a place or a new country not knowing the way or the places they have
visited. Paper map or GPS device is one of the solutions for them. But now, people no longer
use a special device or a paper map to find the destination but can be by using a smartphone
namely Mobile Guide. Mobile Guide is a tour rich multimedia services that are used by the
user (reference input).
Most applications Mobile Guide to 2005 provide navigation support location services, device
type, user profile and characteristics of the environtment. Mobile Guide application trends
not only provide navigation location, user profile, etc., but also supports the visit planning
and tracking service (reference input).
Aplication Real Time Booking
At this time, there are so much real time booking application that can be found in
everyday life, such as mobile application for train booking that provide by Kereta Api
Indonesia. This application gives easiness expected Indonesian society. No more need to go
and queue up at the counter to buy a ticket. Booking tickets can be done at home, providing
station maps to avoid confusion in the search for stations located in the destination city and
departure schedules issued in real time from the server Indonesian train itself. Another
application is an application for real time booking aircraft. Many travel companies or travel
agency that made the application plane ticket reservations in real time. Not only can you
order, the application is also equipped with features pick ticket, duration airline departure
until elections are real-time.
GrabTaxi applying technology applications Mobile Guide and Real Time Booking in their
system, where users can booking a taxi in real-time, at that moment in the taxi booking in a
few minutes will lead to the user. By the time the taxi on the way to the user, your mobile

technology GrabTaxi namely visit planning and tracking service work. We can do the
planning and selection, and tracking purposes and the place where the cab was located by
using the GPS system.

Figure 1. The Protocol of GrabTaxi application

Here is a picture GrabTaxi application protocol (in common form) from the booking process
through the application, user enter the mobile cloud system up to the reporting of data related
to the user that the driver will pick him up, and vice versa, the user data such as location and
contact sent to the driver.
The first line is the booking process. Users enter a location, destination, and if there is enter
promo code. These data will be entered into the mobile computing GrabTaxi network and the
data will be sent to the driver. The second line is reporting. This stage is when the driver has
managed to user Grab ordering. Will automatically send to the car network computing in the
form of a taxi location and time of arrival. Then the mobile network computing will provide
the data to the user. After that the user just waiting for the arrival of the taxi, where while
waiting the user also can see the tracking position of the booked taxi.


Grab Taxi's System Technologies

More details about the GrabTaxi application, were summarized below:

Passenger Safety Feature

The rise of crime in areas such as Jakarta that were involving taxi as the medium,

make a declining confidence taxi users to a particular taxi fleet. This has become one of
the focus issues in GrabTaxi application development. Even so the security features of
GrabTaxi became a major weapon in attracting public attention to GrabTaxi. By relying
on network integration taxis are managed independently by GrabTaxi, unlike most other
services, GrabTaxi has made more effort to establish a community taxis are operating in a
The group will get a complete personal data collection and system training before
officially entering GrabTaxi network. Each driver is required to qualify for some of the
terms and monitoring performance over into the taxi's drivers. As a final product,
GrabTaxi successfully established a network of taxis are more credible and accountable
in case things are not desirable in the future.
In addition, when it was in the taxi, we also can use the unique features named "Share My
Ride". This feature allows passengers to notify the position and state when driving
through social media, so many people who know its existence. Therefore, in case of a
crime or a problem on the passenger himself will be directly tracked by the GrabTaxi and
could be followed up with a fast, effective, and targeted.
- Cloud Based
Cloud computing is a model for enabling ubiquitous, convenient, on-demand network
access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers,
storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with
minimal management effort or service provider interaction. [7].

While the service model that applied by GrabTaxi is Software as a Service (SaaS). The
capability provided to the consumer is to use the providers applications running on a
cloud infrastructure. The applications are accessible from various client devices through
either a thin client interface, such as a web browser (e.g., web-based email), or a program
interface. The consumer does not manage or control the underlying cloud infrastructure
including network, servers, operating systems, storage, or even individual application
capabilities, with the possible exception of limited user specific application configuration
settings [7].
By using cloud-based GPS technology, women passengers who book a taxi via GrabTaxi
traceable in real time. Passengers also can share the location of the taxi he was traveling
with friends, relatives, or family through social media such as Facebook, Twitter and
Google+. All the convenience provided by this GrabTaxi can run smoothly because of the
cloud means that the system can provide the metadata of the GrabTaxi application so it is
easily accessible and allows for real time interaction between passenger and driver.
Based on survey data that we have done of 51 respondents GrabTaxi users, as well as the
results of the GrabTaxi own research, Southeast Asia showed that taxi users is dominated
by women, because men are more likely to use private vehicles [6]. The majority of
female passengers often feel scared, anxious for his safety while in the cab. This is the
main reason we developed applications GrabTaxi taxi reservation. More passenger safety
is assured because the taxi drivers who use GrabTaxi also required to enroll them in the
available databases. By doing so, the parties will be able to assess the performance
GrabTaxi taxi drivers in accordance with the recommendation of users.

Graph 1. Total users based on gender

Applications that are claimed to have been downloaded 1.2 million times and has 300
thousand active users per month can already be downloaded for free in the Google Play
Store, Apple's AppStore, Windows Phone Store, and BlackBerry World. So, it just easy
to find.

Taxi Booking Fast and Right with GPS Dispatching System [5]. In addition to the

application, GrabTaxi have a comprehensive solution for automated dispatching taxi

operators and call center operators. Currently generally to order directly to the taxi
company operator takes more than 10 minutes. Even then, if there was a fleet in around
our place. Even when the need can be longer if the incoming rush hour or when the rain
arrived. With the help of GrabTaxi we can cut our time is wasted up to 3 minutes.
With GPS dispatching system we can monitor in real time the nearest taxi fleet and direct
contact through several tabs on our smartphones. In addition, at the time of ordering a
taxi we also presented complete data regarding taxi would we choose, including a data
driver, police numbers, and feedback from previous passengers. Not only that, the details
of the path and the estimated cost of a taxi journey we can also look to add a sense of
GPS dispatching system developed by GrabTaxi can be regarded as an innovation
solutive in terms of meeting the needs of taxi services in major cities. Imagine with this
technology, which benefited not only the passengers can get a quick taxi services but for
the taxi drivers also be a great way to get passengers to easily and cost-effective. If the
taxi drivers generally spend quite a lot of time and fuel to find customers, now just
waiting in strategic areas and passengers books came naturally [8]. GPS systems that
developed and used by GrabTaxi basically still use the help of other applications, namely
Google Maps application which can be seen on display GrabTaxi maps.

Graphic User Interface (GUI)

Graphic user interface or commonly abbreviated with the GUI is one of the user

interface in the form of a graphical display or image used to perform user anatara
communication and computer systems [9].
GrabTaxi use GUI that is understandable and easy to use even though the layman to the
first application uses. The dominant color in the application that is green, black, and
white in order to give the impression of a simple eye catching as well as the identity of
the company GrabTaxi. Interaction styles are applied to the application GrabTaxi is a
menu selection and fill-in form. Form fill-in style at the time of entering the initial
location of the passenger, the passenger and enter promotional purposes. Unmatched
style menu when resume option, cancel orders etc. Arial font type selected by GrabTaxi
that the text contained in the application is clear and easy to read.
GrabTaxi taxi booking GUI as follows:

Figure 2. First Step of booking process

GUI in Figure 2 is the initial view of the application GrabTaxi. In this view there are
maps the user's location automatically. In addition there is a form to enter the pickup
location and the destination location of the user.

Figure 3. Step 2 of booking process

GUI in Figure 3 is a menu to enter a promo code, giving a tip for taxi drivers and add
information if applicable.

Figure 4. Step 3 of booking process

GUI in Figure 4 there are taxi icon colors, they are red, green and black. The Icon is the
taxis which are located around the user's location. Green icon taxis are taxi clicking Grab
users who need a taxi. Red icon color are taxi which refused Grab users who need a taxi.
Black icon are taxi that does not respond to users who need a taxi. After that, the green
iconic taxi located also the nearest, will be deliver the passenger the location of its target

Figure 5. Step 4 of booking process

GUI in Figure 5 is the appearance of the user to get the driver's cab. Complete with the
name of the driver, the driver's photograph, the distance the driver, the vehicle license
plate and the estimated price of the pick-up to the destination location.

Figure 6. Step 5 of booking process

GUI in Figure 6 is a view for tracking taxi which will pick up the user. We also can call the
driver and cancel the booking.


Challenges and Trends

- Technology Evolution
Mode of transportation is becoming one of the basic needs urban society such as in
Jakarta. High mobility causes people to make taxi as one of alternative modes of
transportation who most in demand, especially in the upper middle class [10].
A few years ago, taxi has become a mode of public transportation is growing rapidly, but
in reality the process is still very conventional operation and low touch of information
technology. The process of booking a taxi from prospective consumers still rely on phone
calls, and also the process of booking a taxi from the center of the distribution of services to
each taxi fleet is still by means of radio communication. Similarly, the reporting process of
taxi fleet of consumer delivery process is also still a goal to radio communications. Service
system less efficient over the course so that it is necessary to formulate a new system that
can make taxi booking system more efficient.
The above facts make some taxi companies continue to develop a system that can
facilitate the parties involved in the business workflow and processes and the use of taxi
booking services in urban society also continues to grow. If previously, ordering taxi which
takes a relatively long time is not an issue for the customer, the customer needs that turned
into one of the considerations taxi service providers, because the the current urban society
greatly appreciate the time and prefer to use an alternative that takes a relatively short time.
Along with the rapid development of technology the last few years, in order to meet the
needs customer urban society today, there are taxi services company that develops taxi
booking system, began from the use of sms (short message service), online ordering, mobile
ordering to the operator, until most recently the booking taxi via a smartphone app that
connects users with a driver's taxi directly, as implemented by GrabTaxi.

The delivery process is quite short. Once accessed, GrabTaxi will immediately detect the
location of the customer accurately based on GPS position, for then GrabTaxi will instantly
find the nearest empty taxi number of customer locations with a certain radius. After that,
users simply just enter the location you want to target and then wait for taxi which will
accept user orders. Not forget, the data, information taxi drivers, and tracking the location of
taxi that accept orders will also be accepted at that moment users in real time, for the use of
cloud computing technology, so that it can increase the level of security with good enough
- Marketing and Publication
In addition, features that promise and presenting ease. There are many other advantages
offered by the GrabTaxi, including in the form of promotional gifts and door prizes with
quite tempting so it can attract the interest of the public, even the middle to lower that
effectively supports the marketing process GrabTaxi.
Look at the overall benefits that can be offered, making GrabTaxi suitable for applications
owned by citizens of the capital city (urban society) that has many activities, especially for
working women and housewives that prioritize safety and comfort in choosing public
To determine the extent to which people familiar GrabTaxi, we have conducted a survey on
51 respondents with diverse backgrounds but dominated by students. Where the results of
the survey we get is, 23 active users GrabTaxi of 51 respondents who complete the survey,
22 of them said that the application GrabTaxi is good, effective, and user friendly enough,
although still need to be developed in order to better again.


Future Direction
These are the features suggested by respondents who had used GrabTaxi Application
(survey results):
- Feature to select a particular taxi (fleet only)
This feature is intended to facilitate the customers to choose their own fleet of taxis that
want to use.
- Features to book a taxi for the other people.
This feature is intended to provide convenience to the taxi passengers who do not know
how to use the GrabTaxi application or do not yet have the application, so that more
people can take advantage of the convenience offered by GrabTaxi.
- E-payment
Urban society are now very familiar with e-payment, so that e-payment could be one of
the features that can also be developed for this GrabTaxi. Furthermore, e-payment make
it easy for passengers to not have to bother to provide cash, and for drivers that do not
have to prepare change.
- Chat-to-chat (social taxi booking)
In GrabTaxi application needs to be added feature chat-to-chat. This feature allows the
user to communicate with the driver or vice versa in real-time. Feature of
communication between the driver and passenger in the current GrabTaxi application is
feature of calling. This feature is considered to be less effective in communicating
because of costs for the call. When the driver arrived at the pick-up destination and have
yet to find the target passenger, the driver should contact the passenger targets. In some
cases, the driver ran out of pulse to call the target passenger, and vice versa. It will be a
bottleneck in the use of realtime applications. This feature requires only an Internet
connection or insufficient data packet. If this feature is successfully developed,
GrabTaxi has the potential to further develop the social taxi booking application.

- GrabTaxi Own GPS

In the future development GrabTaxi might develop its own map application, so that it
can provide own database location, followed by the development of additional features,
for example: recent place, most popular place to go, as well as other features that rely on
process sharing that could attract the attention of social media people in urban areas as
today. Own GPS example is in Waze Apps like the figure below.

Figure 7. Own GPS by Waze Apps

- User profile on the driver interface

The users of GrabTaksi profile data

should be complete on the application page

GrabTaxi's driver. Its purpose to facilitate the driver to recognize users who booked
taxis faster and more precise. User profile data who needs to be added as a user profile
picture. In some cases, the taxi driver confusion in the search for passengers that use the
application GrabTaxi thus wasting the time of the estimated time of arrival taxi.
- The complete of database location
In some case, the locations certain places such as shopping malls, hospitals, restaurants
not detected in GPS GrabTaxi. As a result, application users GrabTaxi difficulty in
determining who want their intended location.

- Capture images or video

The addition of feature capture picture or video also can simplify the driver in finding
the location of the destination. Passengers can capture locations, buildings, roads around
it and share it to the driver as an aid in finding the accurate user location.

- Expansion of the application area

Now GrabTaxi application can only be used in Jakarta. In other areas in dire need of
taxi booking app realtime. So need for development GrabTaxi application in other areas.

In general, real time booking applications, such as those offered by GrabTaxi received
quite well by urban society. Based on the surveys we have done, from 51 respondents, there
are 43 people already know about GrabTaxi, and 23 are active users of the application,
although there are 8 respondents who do not know anything about GrabTaxi. Of the 23
respondents active users, 22 of them were satisfied with this application. Existing
application is considered good enough quality in terms of ease of use (real time use),
discounts and attractive promotions on offer, the data is complete and clear, and security is
guaranteed on by integration of data arranged in cloud-based and security features are quite
promising. All the data that we have collected, it can be concluded that this application is
quite popular among the urban community. the users of this application has been quite
satisfied with the existing applications even though there are many suggestions application
of the new features that are considered able to increase the performance of these
applications, if it actually be able realized, such as GrabTaxi own maps, the user profile on
the driver interface, capture images or video, and etc. However this application will be much
more effective if the intensity of traffic jams in Jakarta could be reduced.



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