Will you be able to hail a cab using your smartphone?

April 23, 2013 8:22:09 PM PDT
A judge's ruling may close the door on the legal case that threatened the very existence of e-haling, a program that New York City's Taxi and Limousine commissioner has been pushing for as a way of ushering in the future of hailing a cab on city streets.

"What this is about is letting cab passengers use their smartphones to hail a cab," said David Yasky of the Taxi and Limousine Co.

App designers are rushing to be the first to introduce e-hailing programs for New York City smartphone users. The passenger opens the app, and they hit "pick me up", which sends a hail to the closest driver.

An app called "Hailo" is expected to be among the fastest to hit the market. It is already working on smartphones in other US cities, and its designers are anxious to get going in New York.

However, an attorney representing livery cab drivers says "not so fast"!

Despite the judges' ruling dismissing their claim, they still believe the TLC is breaking the law with e-hailing.

By introducing apps that could lead to discrimination against passengers, they call it a sea change in the private-for-hire industry in the city.

"The TLC has no right to do this ? it is illegal," said Randy Mastro, a livery cab owner's attorney.