The much talked about Goamiles app for taxi services in the state, launched earlier this week. Originally seen as a blessing and much-needed tool for commuters and tourists, the app has not quite worked out the way it was supposed to. From technical glitches to a lack of vehicles showing availability on the app, perhaps the most disappointing issue is that the fares do not seem to have dropped. As with anything new, there are always problems at the beginning. These teething problems take a while to be smoothed out. However, these glitches have definitely left local commuters up in arms with most of them venting on social media platforms.
The public is upset with Goamiles’s glitches
The mobile app-based taxi service was created and is managed by a company called Frotamiles Pvt Limited. Frotamiles Pvt. Ltd is a subsidiary of Pitasys Software Pvt Ltd, which won the bid for the service. It was launched on Monday, 6th August but has recieved a lot of complaints from dissatisfied users that tried it out.
The app was created in the hope that it would solve the problems faced in getting taxis when required. However, users that downloaded the app, found that there were plenty of glitches in the same. A lot of them took to social media and voiced concerns, saying that it is nothing but “taxi loot turned online”.
“The app was supposed to bring down fares, don’t see that happening. Goa doesn’t have a cab discovery problem. I can call 10 guys from Panjim and be dropped at the airport for Rs 800-1,000,” a citizen posted on a social media platform.
“When I checked, I got a message saying “sorry, no vehicles available to dispatch”, said Frank Sequeira from Campal. “Also, it doesn’t work if you don’t give it permission to access every single thing in your phone from gallery to storage to contacts… Selecting a location is also a pain because nothing shows up. You have to drop a pin on the map to show them where you want to go or be picked up from.”
Other glitches include the app’s software being slow. Additionally, when it came to booking, it did not provide a price estimate for a trip once the destination was set. A complaint made by user Ketan Dessai said, “This is pretty important, so please add the fare estimate and fare chart in the app.”
Some are in favor of Goamiles
But not all users are disgruntled. A few people managed to download the app and utilize the features. They find that the fares they paid were fair enough for the distance traveled. Most of them have had no issues while booking a taxi to try out the app. Some have said, that while there may be glitches, it’s too soon to write the app off.
As one user said on social media, “GoaMiles initiative has to be encouraged. There could be some loopholes but over time am sure these can be sorted out. Please do not write this off as some conspiracy so soon. Allow the progress. Let’s sit back a year later and analyze all we can. God Bless this endeavor and may Goans benefit from this all the way. ”
App developers have their say
It’s not just users that have experienced the glitches in the Goamiles app. Developers have also seen that there are bugs in the software which should have been checked in the testing stages. For example, the app’s algorithm avoids showing the shortest route that a taxi can take. Users can use their same login from multiple phones to book multiple taxis.
Perhaps the most important to most people is the fact that it asks for access to everything in the user’s smartphone. “The app asks for read and write permissions to access a user’s photos and storage drive. Why does the app need such permission?” asked an android developer. Other app developers also say that the app may not be secure as they feel that the security testing done was inadequate.