Shared rides are coming to New York City yellow cabs.
The practice popularized by UberPOOL and Via is not new, but the newcomers essentially overtook the traditional cabs by making it easy to request a shared ride through a mobile app.
Starting Tuesday, you can use either the Curb or Via mobile apps to request a shared ride in one of the yellow cabs in New York City that are equipped with Verifone’s technology. (That's about 60 percent of the fleet.)
The shared option, which will save riders 40 percent off a regular taxi fare, will be available between 32nd Street and 110th Street in Manhattan, for now. Verifone eventually plans to expand the service, including to many more cities.
UberPOOL and Via, which offer ride sharing in black cars and SUVs, cover more of New York City, and also operate in other cities in the U.S. The expansion of ride sharing to licensed city taxis, however, would potentially bring some business back to them.
Related: How to hail a taxi around the world
Curb users will now have a third taxi option, for shared cabs, when hitting the taxi icon on their screen, allowing them to input a drop-off address to match them with either a new or active ride with other users. Similarly, Via users can input their pick-up and drop-off addresses before requesting a regular Via vehicle or a shared taxi.
In both cases, users will be directed to a nearby intersection, where the car will meet them.
“Everyone benefits when we increase the efficiency of vehicles on the road,” Daniel Ramot, the CEO and co-founder of Via, said in a statement. “We’re excited to deploy our technology for the first time in New York City taxis, one of the largest and most important taxi fleets in the world.”