How To Make An App Like Uber?
- Web & App
Searching for information on how to create an app like Uber? Well, Tekrevol is here with all the guidance and recommendations you need to get started on developing an app like Uber. But first, let’s learn a few things about Uber.
Uber was founded back in 2009, and today, it has operations in over 900 metropolitan areas of the world. Uber is a massive success; there’s no doubt that it has gained success because it provided customers with an economical and efficient conveyance method. The bonding of technology that Uber introduced was not only innovative but disruptive too.
Moreover, by the end of 2019, Uber had earned more than $14 billion in revenue. This may not come as a surprise to you, but Uber is actually the most widely used app for ride hailing services globally.
Uber faces fierce competition today because of the launch of several similar apps like Uber. The company still manages to hold its own against its competitors and dominate the ride-sharing market. The following are some of the apps like Uber that are offering the same services:
- Easy Taxi.
- Grab (Operates in Southeast Asia).
- Careem (Operates in Middle-east).
Now that you have an Overview of Uber’s history and success, Tekrevol is here with a complete guide on how to create an app like Uber and how you can ensure the launch of the best taxi app. Moreover, we will be covering the following points in this article:
- What you need to know to create an app similar to Uber
- How does the Uber app work?
- Features that your app like Uber should have.
- The advanced functionality of apps like Uber
- Revenue models for an app like Uber.
- Technology stack you need to create an app like Uber
- Cost of developing an app like Uber
However, Tekrevol’s core intention here is for you to create another successful mobile application project and not an Uber clone. With that out of the way, Let’s learn how you can build an app like Uber.
- Want To Build An App Like Uber? Let’s Start Working On Your Project Together
What You Need To Know To Create An App Similar To Uber
Uber is a brand today which aforementioned operates in 900 metropolitan areas globally. It provides its users with the facility to be in touch with drivers 24 hours via a mobile application.
The Uber mobile application is available on both iOS and Android. The aim of connecting users with drivers is to arrange the transport of the user on time. When the user books a ride, the location of the user and the driver is shared mutually. Hence, both parties know each other’s location.
Quite innovative, right? Uber has captured a significant share in the market through its ride-hailing, smooth app. The application itself provides the users an incredibly smooth interface, convenient operation, and different levels of service options. The various service options are as followed:
- UberBLACK – A business class ride, especially for special occasions or a business meeting.
- UberSUV – When size matters.
- UberX – When you’re looking for a cost-effective option.
- UbexLUX – When you want a top of the line luxurious ride.
So, as you can see with the services mentioned above, the company has divided the transport options into various categories, each designed to serve specific customers. Furthermore, many successful aspects of this famous ride-hailing service are kept secret. But, since you’re here at Tekrevol – we will unveil these secrets to you.
How Does The Uber App Work?
Uber is an application that connects driver-partners and riders. Users can request a ride using their Uber app in the areas where Uber is operating. Once the ride is requested, Uber provides the user with an estimated time of the drive’s arrival and gives the driver’s location.
The Uber app also gives the user information about the driver, vehicle, vehicle number plate, and vehicle type. The users can order Uber from wherever they want. Moreover, once the user arrives at his/her destination, the app automatically calculates the fare. The user pays through either cash or the payment method linked to his/her Uber account.
Once the user has arrived at his/her destination, he/she can rate the driver from 1 to 5 stars. This rating system can also be called Uber’s feedback system. The idea of building a community of respect and accountability is instigated through the integration of a review and rating system.
Uber’s seamless functionality and user experience make Uber the champion in its niche. However, to explain the process, we’ll discuss the Uber business model, which consists of five essential elements. So, if you need to build an app similar to Uber, you can integrate these aspects to make sure your app doesn’t miss a beat:
1. User Ride Request
After downloading the Uber app on iOS or Android, users can request a ride in their preferred car. The ride request generated by Uber is visible to drivers in the nearby vicinity.
2. Accept Or Decline User Request
Uber gives the driver the option to choose his preferred request by accepting or declining/canceling the request. Once the driver cancels the ride request, it is passed over to another driver who is nearby.
3. Ride Booked
If the driver accepts the ride, the user’s contact details are shared with the driver. This makes it easier for him to quickly locate the user’s location and navigate towards him/her giving the user an estimated arrival time in the meantime.
4. Payment Option
After booking the ride, the Uber app gives the user an estimated cost of the ride. The estimated fare can be paid through the flexible payment methods integrated within the app, i.e., cashless or payment upon ride completion.
5. User’s Feedback (Ratings & Reviews)
After completing the ride, the Uber app gives the user a feature of rating the driver and leaving a review of the overall experience.
The functionalities mentioned above are a precise and concise way of describing how the Uber app works. So, suppose you’re willing to design the best taxi app for Android or iOS. In that case, you have to ensure that the steps mentioned above are integrated within your app like Uber.
Now that you know all the ins and outs of developing an app similar to Uber let’s start discussing the app creation method, technology stack, and the functionalities and tools.
Pre-Development Phase Of Creating An App Like Uber
Before getting started creating an app like uber, here are some of the essential points that’ll ensure a successful approach towards your app development:
- Create a business model that entails all the necessary information related to your Uber-like project.
- Research and analyze your targeted audience’s needs and requirements.
- You’re creating an app similar to Uber so, define your USPs clearly and tell your audience what is distinct about your app.
- Get familiar with the required features and functionalities and the technology stack you need to develop them.
- Hire experienced professionals to ensure a smooth and hassle-free project experience.
- Make necessary adjustments before the app’s final launch, and always look for user feedback to improve your app like Uber.
The Technology Stack You’ll Need To Create An App Like Uber
Below we have compiled the technology stack that you’ll need to make an app like Uber:
- Kotlin – For Android
- Swift – For iOS
- io – For providing a seamless playing experience.
- APNS – For push notifications.
- Firebase – For building your mobile application.
- Facebook SDK – For analyzing how people interact with your app.
- Google Maps – For routing and navigation.
- Google Places – For directions and location fetching.
- js for back-end development.
- Elastic Email – An email delivery engine.
- io – For in-app chatting/messaging.
- Google Directions – For routing.
- Amazon EC2 – For cloud hosting.
- Amazon S3 – For cloud storage.
- Braintree/Stripe – For online transactions (payment).
- Twilio – For SMS notification.
The above-mentioned technology stack is an idea of what you need on the tech front to develop your Uber-like app. However, keep in mind that the technology stack may change concerning the business objectives, features, functionality, and platform.
Development Phase Of Your App Like Uber
To develop the best taxi app, you need to understand the Uber App’s major elements/features. The Uber app has two different models that serve different purposes. The first one is the Uber – Request a ride app, and the second one Uber – Driver app. Both the applications have different functionalities; however, both of these apps are interlinked via an admin panel.
Now that you know both of the modules, let’s start discussing both the models and the admin panel, which are crucial in building an app similar to uber.
Functionality Insights Your App Like Uber (User’s Perspective)
The following are some of the most essential features that your app like uber should provide to its users:
- A 1. Registration Option that should help the user create a personalized profile. Make the registration process simple by giving them the option to sign-up with Gmail, Facebook, or phone number for verification.
- 2. Booking Functionality through which the user can select the car, set the pickup location, or enter the address.
- 3. Estimated Price Calculator should be integrated to inform the user about the ride’s rate before he/she books. This is a must-have feature that is implemented on the back-end side of the system.
- 4. Incorporate a Ride Tracking option to help the user identify and update the ride he has booked. The tracking option should enable the user to see the driver’s movement.
- 5. Add a Payment Method in different variants to provide maximum feasibility to the user in terms of cashless payment through PayPal or credit cards or via cash.
- 6. Integrating Push Notification to your uber-like app will keep your users coming back to your app. You can inform your audience about discounts, ride estimated fare, car details, or literally anything to keep him engaged.
- 7. Your app should have an In-App Messaging Facility that should connect the user to the driver.
- 8. A Feedback (Rating and Review) option that fosters service evaluation and betterment of your app.
- 9. Give the user a complete history of his previous rides and transactions by integrating a Travel History page into your app.
- 10. The Customer Support option to assist your users at any time.
Advanced Features Of Your App Similar To Uber (User’s Perspective)
- Ride Cancellation option to help the users cancel a ride if they deem it necessary.
- Interactive Map that shows the user all the rides available nearby.
- Advance ride Booking option to enable the user to book a trip in advance.
- Book For Other to enable the user to book an app on his/her friend’s or relative’s behalf.
- Gamifying The Experience by including badges, starts, points, levels, or coupons. This approach would increase customer engagement and retention rate.
- Voice Recognition allows your application to perform tasks by listening to voice commands.
Functionality Insights Your App Like Uber (Driver’s Perspective)
After developing the user’s side of the app – you should duplicate the experience for your driver’s version of the app in terms of Sign-up, push notifications, messaging, reviews, and support functionality.
The following is a complete functionalities list that will be developed entirely from scratch:
- 1. Driver Profile and Status will help you smoothen the verification process because the drivers would be able to input their license, insurance, and vehicle number, etc., all by themselves. The status will confirm the availability of the driver.
- 2. Ride Alert will allow the drivers to get notified instantly about a customer inquiry so that they can either accept or decline the order. Ride alert should also provide the users with customer location, route, travel, and history.
- 3. Push Notification to notify them about trip changes, target completions, or booking information like navigation, payment, route, etc.
- 4. Route Optimization will prove to be immensely advantageous to the drivers because, through this functionality, they’ll know about the best route to take using Google Maps.
- 5. Analytic Reports of the driver’s average trips, earning (daily, weekly, monthly), or Kilometers driven would be helpful.
- 6. In-App Messaging or Calling feature to help the driver connect conveniently to the user.
Advanced Features Of Your App Similar To Uber (Driver’s Perspective)
- Destination Transparency to help the driver select the ride with a preferred destination.
- Multipliers Completion will give the drivers a facility to earn more by completing weekly or monthly targets. This experience can also be gamified.
- A Penalty Feature in-case the user keeps the driver waiting for more than 15 minutes or cancels the right after a designated time, he/she would have to pay the penalty caused.
- Heat Maps tell the driver where the service is in the most demand so that the driver can plan his schedule in advance to reach a destination where there’s a higher passenger ratio.
- Additional Booking allows the driver to accept another trip while already completing a trip.
Administration Panel For Your App Similar To Uber
The administration panel is a must-have module because it will ensure customer satisfaction, organize and control all other processes, and keep track of all necessary implementations. So, to manage all of the previously mentioned aspects, you need to develop a web-based admin panel.
This web-based admin panel would effectively manage your users, drivers, ride bookings, payments, and in app-accounts and purchases. The Uber app already has a web-based admin panel that it uses to refine its business processes. Moreover, creating a top-notch admin panel would ensure that the following functions are being carried out correctly:
- Driver-User Management.
- Ride Management.
- Fare Management.
- Vehicle & Location Management.
- Reviews, Rating, Support, and Feedback Management.
- Notification Management.
- Content Management.
- Inquiries, Promotions, Discounts & Offers Management.
Revenue Models for an App Like Uber
Your framework for generating financial income or your revenue model may differ from Uber’s original revenue model. Your values and objectives would be the main factors causing the difference. Remember that Uber doesn’t own the vehicles that are registered on its platform. The ride-hailing platform acts as a bridge between the rider and the driver, earning profit.
Generally, the uber revenue models can be divided into two parts: Uber charges fees from the drivers and a second where Uber charges fees from the passengers.
Development Insights Of Creating An App Like Uber
With every functionality and Feature insight, let’s walk through your app’s developmental stage like Uber.
Geo-Location & Routing
Location is the most important function that your app, like Uber, should have. Generally, GPS technology is used to detect someone’s location. In developing an app similar to Uber, this feature will help the drivers locate the users once they’ve requested a ride.
Uber’s app makes the overall process of locating and routing seem quick, efficient, and straightforward, but in reality, there is a complex architecture making the experience look seamless and easy. Moreover, the routing option gives the user and the driver the statistics of the distance and best route.
So, the functionality mentioned above tells us that Geolocation and routing is the core functionality of Uber. When creating an app like Uber, you must ensure a flawless service experience that rivals that of Uber.
Technical Side Of Geo-Location & Routing
From pinning the point on a map to tracking the car movement in your Uber app – literally everything is related to Google Maps. Routes and directions in the Android version of the app are powered by Google Maps. Also, this is the easiest and most accurate way.
Maps SDK and Geo-Location API are the tools/technology you need to develop your app similar to Uber (Android version). These technologies will give you the drivers and users precise location and routing advantage.
Core-Location and Map-Kit are the two frameworks that you need to provide your users with the same functionality you provided on your Android version of the Uber-like app. These technologies can also efficiently select routes and provide directions to both parties.
Next comes the payment integration methods that you will be integrating into your ride-hailing app. Uber has its own strategy of demanding payment from users and sharing the amount between the vendor/driver and owner. So, you may have to come with your own distribution strategy.
Let’s assume you have your strategy ready. Now, you’re looking for a straightforward transaction method between the parties, which could benefit your customers and drivers. One approach would be paying upon ride completion. The second would be cashless payment – let’s discuss both of them by considering what Uber has integrated with its app to make the payment mode smooth and seamless.
Uber has a fare calculator integrated within their app that calculates and gives the user a highly accurate estimation of how much the ride would cost. The calculator also provides the user with different estimates depending on the type of conveyance that the user has chosen, i.e., UberX, SUV, Premium, or Black.
Uber considers the following aspects to give the passengers and drivers and estimation cost:
- Base Fare.
- Cost Per Minute.
- Cost Per Mile.
- Safe Rides Fee.
For the cashless method, you would have to integrate a payment system into your app and ensure that the system is safe. However, to store and process credit card data, you would be required to meet PCI compliance requirements. Once you’re PCI certified, you can easily integrate a cashless payment feature to your app.
The second way to ensure a fully secured and supported payment gateway is through opting for a PCI compliance solution like Braintree or Stripe.
Moreover, providing your audience with a seamless experience is the key here, so make sure that your payment gateway is specially designed for mobile devices. Also, the service is simple and ensures quick user data extraction.
Uber uses Braintree for all of its cashless transactions. Uber is also leveraging its newly announced Card.io integration. Card.io scans a card’s code using the device’s camera to provide users extreme convenience while paying for their chosen service.
Registration & Profile
Registration and profile are the most crucial elements of a mobile application. And quite honestly, today, we can’t imagine a website that doesn’t ask for the user’s information.
According to App Annie, consumers downloaded nearly 204 billion apps in 2019. Almost all of the apps downloaded had a registration option. The user would conveniently set up his/her profile.
Moreover, there are three reasons why you should consider having a registration and profile page. One, you can keep track of your user base. Second, so that your users can get access to the full set of services offered by your app, similar to Uber. Third, well, Uber gives its users similar functionality.
Considering that you’re developing an app like Uber, which will involve mobile payments, this feature is necessary. Also, to keep the process of registration and profile completion swift – we recommend you give your audience the option of signing in via social media or email.
Similar functionality is offered by Uber. This approach will enable your customers to quickly complete the registration process and start availing of your services. You can also ask for their phone number in addition.
For the profiles, keep the process of incorporating data and managing it easy. Some of the information that you can ask from your customers are the following:
- Upload a profile picture.
- Phone number.
- Car license number.
A tip from Tekrevol would be to keep the functionality minimum by asking for the information that matters the most. Additionally, you can also add a rating and review system.
This strategic move will help you showcase that you care about your users and their experience. Their feedback will also help you improve your app’s several pain points that were negatively impacting your overall reputation.
The UI – UX Design
The app’s UI and UX are essential because they will determine your users’ kind of experience when using your app.
Also, considering that your app is similar to uber and to showcase the complex functionality in a simple and easy-to-understand way would prove beneficial for your app project.
While there are many things we can tell you about your app’s design aspect, we prefer to explain our ideology regarding the design in two specific words, “Simple and Clean.” Most of your audience might have difficulty using your app, maybe because they’re new to the technology or old.
Incorporating an outstandingly easy design will help users of all ages to know how to use your app easily. Additionally, aside from a smooth and clean interface, you can also develop easy navigation into your app. Here are some general recommendations from our side to help you when designing an app like Uber:
- Ensure a user-friendly experience.
- The design should reflect your app’s (business’s) core values.
- The navigation should be easy.
- The booking process should be hassle-free and fast.
- The functionalities and features of the app should be intuitive.
- Visuals elements and graphics should be stunning.
Standard notifications or push notifications to keep the users coming back to your app. You can also use these notifications to inform the users about the latest offer, discount, news, or anything else important. Having a notification functionality will enable you to engage your audience and persuade them to use your app.
Moreover, integrating an SMS, Email, or Push notification feature within your app will help you notify your audience about important events like the arrival of the car or request confirmation.
You can leverage the following technologies to build an Uber-like notification feature:
- Apple Push Notification Service (APN) – to build a notification functionality in iOS devices.
- Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM) – to build a notification functionality for Android-powered devices.
Ride Cost Estimator
An algorithm-based cost estimator is crucial for your app, similar to Uber. We said algorithm-based because your app should have its own rates and fares that would change according to the service type and cost-per-mile.
This feature would enable the users to see the price of the ride they’re about to book. Your app’s ride cost calculating algorithm would calculate the user’s total distance, estimated time of journey, and drop-off location to give the users an estimated cost.
Moreover, the app’s functionality would be customized so, it is crucial to decide the calculating cost methodology applied to the app. Furthermore, Uber has different algorithms that calculate the fares of additional services users choose, like UberX or UberSUV.
We are building a highly innovative app like Uber that is connecting users with vendors. Here, communication is probably the most critical aspect of the app. To be more precise, communication is the foundation of this particular app.
The users would be communicating with the drivers frequently after the ride has been booked. Although this feature is present in literally every app today, there’s always room for more improvement. Once integrated with your ride-sharing app, this feature will make it even more convenient for the users to connect with their drivers.
In Uber, the user can call or text the driver within the app. We will focus on incorporating the same built-in messaging and calling technology into your app.
Integrating an SMS notification feature will help you go beyond the basic functionality of providing information to your users. You can send the users information related to your app or services via SMS.
You can do this by contacting the telecommunication service provider. For SMS notification, the Uber app utilizes Twilio. However, you can avail more options like Nexmo, Sinch, or Plivo to get this feature for your audience.
Advance Ride Booking
A more modern feature introduced by Uber a few years ago, this functionality enables the user to request a pickup in advance within a timeframe of 15 minutes to 30 days. This feature gave users the facility to plan their trips more accurately.
Integrating a ride scheduling functionality can be a USP. It will surely persuade your audience to use your app to avail of this feature alone. Moreover, by combining this feature with other features mentioned on this list, you’ll create your app’s broader functionality.
Ride Booking For Others
This feature is similar to the ride-booking in advance functionality. It would be innovative to include in your Uber-like app development. This feature gives users the option of requesting a ride on behalf of a friend or relative.
Fare Sharing Feature
One more advanced functionality that you can include in your Uber-like app is the fare sharing feature. This feature would allow the users traveling to the same destination to ride together and divide the traveling cost between each other.
How Much Would It Cost To Build An App Like Uber?
Wondering how much it would cost to build apps like Uber? The cost depends on the functionality, complexity, and feature set you’ll integrate within your app.
Considering all the features and functionalities mentioned above, developing an Uber-like app would cost you from $60,000 to $120,000. Plus, you would have to get an admin panel designed for your Uber-like app. The price of getting an admin panel developed would be somewhere between $10,000 to $15,000.
Moreover, if you are looking for a complete breakdown of the cost of developing an app like Uber. In that case, we have a great blog on “How much would it cost to make an app,” written by one of our top business analysts. Be sure to check it out.
Following the instructions in our article, going through each phase of your Uber-like app development in detail and hiring the best talent to work on your cab-hailing service providing app will ensure a ground-breaking app in the end.
We suggest that you start with an MVP (minimum viable product) and determine which features and functionalities are genuinely essential for your application. Go for the research and analyze your targeted audience – see what is currently missing in the market and create a business model.
Ensure that your business model is fulfilling your target audience’s demands and start working on your project. Moreover, the best way to constantly improve your app is by understanding user’s feedback and adjusting accordingly to it in the long-run.
These implementations and processes are essential because today, the market is highly competitive. To stand out today, you need to bring innovation. Uber was successful because, at the time of its launch, no companies offered such services at such a massive scale. So, because market conditions are continually evolving – we want you to adapt to the best practices to ensure your project’s success in the long run.
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Author : nabeel
Nabeel Ahmed is a coffeeholic with an itch for creativity. He loves learning and understanding technology and how it is changing the world for the greater good. He puts forth his creativity to explain how technologies and humans are continually interacting to create a more sustainable and facilitating world. During his free time, you'll find him watching "Family Guy."
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