The city of Barcelona, Spain has introduced an initiative which aims to facilitate the use of taxis and reduce waiting times. It has integrated taxis into its AMB Mobility mobile app, which gathers all the public transit options available in the larger metropolitan area of Barcelona. The free AMB Mobility app has more than 175,000 active users and includes every mobility service available, route planning, and alerts about air pollution levels and blockages due to road construction.
Much like Uber (which is not available in the city), the Picmi Taxi functionality in the app enables the user to find out how many minutes it would take a vehicle to arrive at the indicated collection point and then decide whether to accept or reject the ride. Picmi Taxi also displays the approximate price of the requested route through the “Calculate your route” function. If the user is in an area where there are no taxis nearby, the application refers them to other private apps and taxi stations that are registered and licensed to operate in the city. At this time, it does not allow pre-booking nor payment through the app.
The city has made the app mandatory for the 10,500 taxis that circulate in the metropolitan region, whether they are autonomous or belong to a taxi company. Picmi was created at a cost of 200,000 euros, with 70% being financed with Next Generation funds. NextGenerationEU is a temporary recovery instrument to help repair the immediate economic and social damage brought about by the coronavirus pandemic in Europe. Projects may be funded by NextGenerationEU if they meet the requirements of improving mobility, reducing pollution, and/or digitizing services.