Ola and Uber have become synonymous with current public conveyance system. Cheap rides to quick services, these companies are offering everything to lure their customer and establish a market base. Technology affects every business, and so is the case with Ola and Uber. The blockchain is gaining momentum and is now affecting the companies as well. We will see it ahead, how blockchain will affect the current business of Ola and Uber.
Benefits of blockchain
Before going ahead delving deep into the impact of this technology, let’s have a quick view of the benefits which it offers. Blockchain provides a decentralized system where different nodes work together to validate and approve a transaction.
Secondly, blockchain is a distributed ledger which has all the transactions or database stored in chronological order. This information is visible to all the people in the network and is unalterable. The database in the blockchain cannot be deleted. Because of its decentralized feature, the service providers and the consumers can directly connect with each other, and the inbuilt currency exchange cuts down the need for cash payment.
Ola and Uber –
These are the common names when it comes to the cab system. They are also called as a part of sharing economy. But, this is a bit misleading. They are the service aggregators. For example, Uber aggregates cars and drivers to a centralized system and then resells it to the people who are looking for cabs. Although it seems all good, there have been cases when drivers of the cabs have been abusive or erratic. You could always see a message of surge pricing. This was the problem from the customer’s perspective but, the drivers also have issues. They have no collective bargaining power. The taxi companies like Ola and Uber charge 10 percent – 20 percent of their earnings. In this entire process, they also capture the personal details of the customer like their mobile phone numbers, address, email ids, etc. which can undermine privacy.
How is blockchain posing as a solution?
You don’t need a separate Uber app, what you can do is have an app which is built on the blockchain. Everyone gets a copy of this app. The rest of the process remains the same. You need to register and log in the app just like you used to do it in Ola or Uber. This master app on Blockchain knows what kind of car you want and where you want to go. The automated system matches the parameters and provides you the required car. Further, the entire process is aided by an inbuilt payment system. It can be Ethereum or Bitcoin thus cutting down the need of relying on an intermediary for payment. Intermediary here means the payment gateway options where you need to fill in the details of your card. It not only saves your time but also reduces the probability of your personal information getting revealed to a third party.
It was from the customer’s perspective; the drivers also get the benefit of paying for fuel, buying insurance, etc. All this can be done by the driver. We are also expecting an autonomous app in the system which has all the vehicles enlisted in the system, once the customer needs the vehicles, the app performs the task. Now that’s the big challenge for companies like Ola and Uber. Although it may challenge their business if we speak from the perspective of drivers, they can keep more value, lesser percentage sharing from the company, etc.
Well, this sounds interesting!!! It is just on papers in the current scenario. Before bringing it into practical applications, there are various questions need an answer like data management, ensuring the right match of customer’s requirement and the car, storing their personal information and managing it, payment, etc.
Blockchain holds a promising future in the times to come. Ola and Uber form an integral part of the current public transportation system. Similar to another system, the current process of Ola and Uber has some loopholes like lack of transparency, personal information sharing, etc. Blockchain comes to a solution to thus by decentralizing all the operations and cutting the need for the third party.
We still have to wait and see, if this something like this comes up, how it is going to transform the industry and at the same time how will it benefit the customer.