In-cab entertainment is being rolled out as a pilot in cities of Delhi and Pune. Passengers will be able to watch movies, listen to news or scout for deals while riding in a cab through a device and app
Taxi-hailing app Uber has started a pilot with Pune-based Cabby Tabby Technologies, for installing Android-based entertainment devices inside its cabs in India.
The company is testing the in-car entertainment service to counter a similar service provided by its rival Ola called Ola Play. Cabby Tabby Technologies was started in Pune this year by Shripal Gandhi, who is also the co-founder and CEO at Swipe Technologies which designs and manufactures budget smartphones, wearables and tablets.
“Already (in cab) experience of more than 10 lakh riders is being enhanced every month. Every day more cabs are getting installed with CabbyTabby platform. We have partnered with Hungama Music, Hungama Play, TVF, PrankMinister, Fast10, MallsnDeals, etc for content on the devices,” said Gandhi, who co-founded Cabby Tabby.
The in-cab entertainment pilot is currently being tested in cities of Pune and Delhi in segments such as UberX, he added.
Swipe had raised Rs 32 crore from Kalaari Capital to set up a manufacturing unit for mobile devices near Pune in April 2014. The company also sells low-cost smartphones and tablets online.
Apart from basic information like the weather and time, CabbyTabby’s onboard device (as experienced by Moneycontrol) provides information on latest news, events and in-cab entertainment through music videos, songs and short films.
Hungama Music is curating content related to songs and music videos. The video section is being curated with select content creators such as TVF, Prank Minister and Fast Ten.
Uber’s in-cab entertainment in India also offers an ‘Explore City’ option which offers the rider interesting facts about various monuments and landmarks in the city and could essentially turn riders into tourists and the cab into a virtual tourist guide.
The entertainment partnership also opens doors for advertisers who wish to advertise inside cabs, opening new revenue stream for the company. Interestingly, Uber is learnt to be offering Rs 1,000 to its driver partners per month for installing the device inside a cab.
“CabbyTabby is a new brand revolutionizing media, which is highly targeted, interactive and ROI driven,” Gandhi said declining to comment on the revenue share arrangement citing it as confidential.
The food section in the CabbyTabby app lists various restaurants and pubs around the city. The events section is populated with various happenings around the city. Interestingly, there’s also a special offers section which offers deals on apparels, accessories shoes and watches.
Riders going out for shopping to a mall can check out what store is offering discount and avail special discounts too. An email questionnaire to Uber on its new in-cab entertainment pilot went unanswered.
Ola also offers a similar service called Ola Play in its ‘Prime’ segment of cabs.
Uber is also reported to be in talks with Bangalore-based WiFi content provider SpotPlay.
“In our pilot phase we’re planning to install Spotplay boxes in 200 cabs in Bangalore,” said Sai Krishna, CTO, SpotPlay. Riders will be able to connect to the Spotplay Box and access content over their email@example.com