Following EasyTaxi pre-launch in the capital of Indonesia recently, GrabTaxi, another prominent player in taxi hailing apps, has today announced the launch of its beta version in Jakarta.

Founded in July 2011 as MyTeksi in Malaysia, GrabTaxi has gained strong acceptance in Southeast Asia. The company claims that one cab is being booked every two seconds in the region. With over 1.2 million downloads and 250,000 users per month, GrabTaxi claims to be the market leader in Southeast Asia.

“Since the mobile app was first launched in 2012, the response from commuters around Southeast Asia has been amazing. Now we are bringing the convenience and reliability of GrabTaxi mobile app to Indonesian commuters,” said Anthony Tan, GrabTaxi Founder and Group CEO.

anthony tan

According to Tan, drivers who have joined GrabTaxi report an increase of 30 to 300 per cent in their take-home income.

GrabTaxi app offers similar services like other taxi hailing apps that connect commuter with taxi driver. With GrabTaxi commuters can also include their destination when booking a taxi, thus increasing the likelihood of a successful booking. Taxi drivers would be more inclined to accept booking offers if the destination is along their desired route.

The app can be downloaded for free for smartphones and tablets running on iOS Android, Blackberry or Windows. When the application is launched, GrabTaxi automatically detects the commuter’s current location using the smartphone’s in-built GPS and shows the number of available taxis within a certain radius. The commuter selects the desired destination and the booking request is then sent to taxi drivers within the said radius. The drivers bid for the job and the one nearest to the commuter is assigned the booking. The commuter receives a booking confirmation within one minute, along with the driver’s contact details, name, vehicle registration number and the estimated time of arrival.

Also Read: Easy Taxi in pre-launch phase in Indonesia; Usman Lodhi is Country Manager

The commuter can also track the real-time location of the booked taxi, watching as his driver moves towards him. GrabTaxi is also integrated with a GPS maps application to help drivers with direction. With “Share My Ride” feature commuters’ loved ones can also track their ride in real-time.

The idea of GrabTaxi began when it stood second in the 2011 Harvard Business Plan Contest. Since then, the app has won several awards including the 2013 Frost & Sullivan Best Travel App and the Malaysian Venture Capital and 2013 Private Equity Outstanding Trustee Company.

For the duration of the beta launch from June 6 to July 6, 2014, GrabTaxi will be giving away MAP shopping vouchers to beta testers.

Also Read: My first venture was at 11, says Anthony Tan, who traded comics then