Rick Seymour

Review of Taxi Booking Despatch systems

Recently I had the opportunity to view the range of taxi despatch (or dispatch if you prefer) & booking software that taxi companies use to book in jobs from the telephone and send the job out to the driver.

Which software products being reviewed


I used to work in the taxi industry as the technical director at a 180 car company which I no longer work at. I personally shopped around to see what other products were on the market and then fed this information back to the board. I can now release my personal opinions on here and are not those views of my former employer.


Obviously to maintain commercial sensitivity with the prices quoted I’ll refer in “beans”
Cabmaster – 1 bean
Mercury – 1¼ beans
Autocab – 1½ beans
Cordic – 3 beans

Size of Company

This is perceived size, I don’t have accurate data
Cabmaster – 6
Mercury – 30
Cordic – 50
GPC – 200

Quality of Sales Rep

(I used to be a medical sales, so have been trained in classical needs based, LSCPA sales)
Cabmaster – Non existent.
Mercury – Very impressed, relaxed, confident, let’s product do most of talking.
Autocab – Sales Sales Sales. But yet subtle. Took me down to Data Cars in Birmingham to see operation.
Cordic – Arrogant, actively avoided talking price. Arranged for me to visit A1 Radio cars. Did bring along a very impressive presentation though, with the software run from a laptop. (Impressive use of system resources)

With both Autocab and Cordic the visits arranged were primarily cash based businesses which did not really meet the account work volume that Millers Taxis have, therefore it was not representative. Mercury did try and match like for like, and to an extent did show similar account work volumes.

This is very important for any taxi company as cash work is very easy to input. ie “34 Smith st TAB 12 ashbourne crescent END” (example) with the majority of the bookings for NOW. Booking in account work takes slightly longer and more care is needed.

Technical Quality of Software

Autocab despite it’s sales material DOES use a client server model, with the dispatchers machine acting as the server. Autocab uses an embedded MySQL server, with distributed backup. There is still a single point of failure, however with hard drives set up in a RAID configuration and database cloning this is greatly reduced. The programme itself is installed on Shuttle micro ITX computers running WindowsXP, on boot the programme auto loads and prompts for a “function” ie Dispatcher. PDA software is difficult to use but does have redundancy (grr) built in.

Cordic uses Microsoft 2003 SQL server. Is REALLY quick. (no … really really quick). The link between the modules is very well set out which allows for quick input.

Cabmaster uses static database files (.btr) using the BTrieve (Pervasive SQL), with the files shared over Windows File Sharing (SMB) which is from the dark ages of computing. This in my eyes is one of cabmaster’s biggest failings, any hard drive corruption or write error can seriously damage the files leading to jobs being lost. To my knowledge there have been 2 occasions where the database needed to be “re-built” to my knowledge. (prior to me starting). Command Software should set up a RAID configuration on the MAIN server. Also there are THREE machines that in the standard configuration that act as servers MAIN, BACKUP, HOST which are each a point of failure.

Cabmaster has some very good features but is very buggy. There is no version control in their development which means if you want a bug fix you get the latest version which could have other bugs. Cabmaster has the BEST XDA software on the market.. by far… very easy to use! No question! Lessons need to be learned from the others!


Autocab is by far the biggest company in the taxi dispatch software market, but has not delivered a product which takes the needs of a live taxi business into account, and are very much “Do it this way”. Stable, but only at the expensive of office productivity, ie can only use the computer for autocab, not email, not yellow pages etc.

Cabmaster, is actually a really good product, however they are let down by a lack of online booking system that integrates into the product. I re-wrote parts of Millers’ online booking website to link to Cabmaster it was put together many years ago in ASP and is vulnerable to SQL injection and needs re-writing with security being it’s focus. I did make a start on a AJAX PHP online booking website that used a MySQL address database which would then insert the job into the live database, but hey he ho.. Millers didn’t see the value in this. (If any company would be interested in this. Get in touch!)

Mercury is a lovely product, well put together and my favourite. My only real concern with it was the holding off for “Mercury 2″ which by all accounts has been work in progress for many years. Needs a “What’s happening now” panel and improvements to their XDA software.


AutoCab 4/10 – Lagging behind on some of the high value technical features of their competitors. Good if not used a booking system before.

Cordic 9/10 – The doggy-do-dahs of the taxi booking software but is CRAZILY priced!!!

Cabmaster 7/10 – Well layed out, easy to use, but does not have a good training manual or training structure. I would have liked to stay with Cabmaster

Mercury 8/10 – Very good product…. in the second stage sales presentation the National Sales manager let the sale go by talking about irrelevant things.


Cabmaster – If you want more top quality features. (They need to sort out the buggy nature of their product)

Mercury – If you want better training and setup support.


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Comments on:

Review of Taxi Booking Despatch systems
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    May 15, 2017 at 4:19 am Reply
  4. TaxiMobility

    The way you shared the information is really good and appreciative. We have the end-to-end dispatch system among these big players in market and we provide the solution to all kind of Transportations.

    March 22, 2017 at 2:25 pm Reply
  5. Curtisden

    Есть такая услуга – добровольное медицинское обслуживание .
    Она предполагает, что вы платите небольшую сумму за абонемент и ходит на прием весь год БЕСПЛАТНО.
    Однако соцопросы показывают, что лишь 4% жителей Санкт-Петербурга знают о такой программе.
    По какой причине?
    Да потому что клиникам выгоднее сдирать с людей деньги за каждый визит.
    А если честный врач попытается посоветовать добровольное медицинское обслуживание клиенту – это сулит ему увольнением.
    Информация о ДМО уже спровоцировала много возмущений, после того как информацию об этом рассекретил один врач.
    Его уволили , после того, как он посоветовал ДМО постоянному клиенту.
    Страшно, что информация по ДМО присутствуют в открытом доступе, просто находили на эту информацию только случайные люди.
    Как отстоять свои права?
    О правилах оказания такой услуги и обязанностях клиник можно узнать, сделав запрос в Яндексе: “добровольное медицинское обслуживание”.
    И именно обслуживание, а не страхование.


    February 10, 2017 at 1:15 am Reply
  6. CroplaTaxi

    Here you can get the http://www.croplataxi.com/ taxi dispatch software to manage your taxi business easily. Run your taxi business like OLA,Uber and earn commission from each taxi company and promote your taxi company.

    October 26, 2016 at 8:16 am Reply
  7. Arnie Torrete

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    September 18, 2016 at 3:57 am Reply
  8. Eric Campbell

    Autocab. I believe are a bunch of crooks who I implore you to boycott. We spent many
    thousands of £s with them and their system is crap. Breakdown after breakdown and
    if you let your ( outrageously expensive) service contract to run out they demand £1000
    call out charge and £92 per hour,they also keep you waiting anything up to 6 weeks for
    their half trained “Engineer” to attend. I have been in the trade for over 40 years with
    two fleets 142 and 100 respectively and I have never encountered a bigger bunch of
    of (what I believe are) Conmen. I urge my fellow Operators to give them and their
    Second Rate system/s a very wide berth, Stay away from them !

    May 12, 2016 at 11:23 pm Reply
  9. imran khan

    Thank you for your reply Shahan. I would not call your system a low price system. Your system is very much over priced and not affordable for small taxi companies like our company. Please can anybody recommend a good software app for around 15 cars that does not cost the earth?

    May 7, 2016 at 12:58 am Reply
  10. Shayan

    Imran khan you can go with http://www.taxiadmin.org this such good solution with low price and so many features

    May 6, 2016 at 1:52 pm Reply
  11. imran khan

    Hello all. I have read this forum. Around 10 years ago this taxi despatch software use to be very expensive because of the cost of hardware etc. Now because everybody has smart phones, the drivers can use their own smartphones to use for getting the jobs. Basically we have a 15 driver company and want to expand. We are still using radios as we have not come across a reasonably priced piece of software. We don’t need anything flashy like IVR etc, just a simple booking and despatch system, to check where our drivers are and to ensure the job despatch procedure is efficient. We aim to go up to around 25 taxis and no more. There must be a free app or software out there that does not cost the earth like all these other taxi dispatch companies who want to charge extortionate amounts for like installation, then per driver per month and training etc. I am sure there is an app out there that is just as efficient as autocab,icabbi and all these other highly marketed brands.Please if anybody knows of one, please email me. thanks

    May 5, 2016 at 7:17 pm Reply
  12. Shayan

    Anyone give info regarding Marandy Taxi system. I am looking fir best system for 5000 cars.

    April 21, 2016 at 1:44 am Reply
  13. john

    i am starting a private hire business,can anyone recommend a dispatch system that suits our limited budget,we will have in the region of 20 cars. thanks in advance.

    January 11, 2016 at 2:09 pm Reply
    • Jared

      John, send me an email I think I can help you out! Cheers, Jared. (jared at vtoms dot com)

      January 27, 2016 at 10:10 pm Reply
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      Kndwgeole wants to be free, just like these articles!

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  14. James Johnson

    We have a system that uses online payment and find that it ticks all the boxes and we use it a lot http://www.marbellataxis.com

    December 7, 2015 at 6:59 pm Reply
  15. Ionut

    We’re INSOFTDEV, the developers of Smart2Car, a complete solution for Booking and Dispatching, including web and mobile apps for drivers and passengers. In return you’ll benefit from a high flexibility you won’t see it to any other UK leader and the most competitive prices.
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    November 25, 2015 at 12:20 pm Reply
  16. Your Cab Manager

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    November 4, 2015 at 10:37 am Reply
  17. Louise

    I have read through your recent comments and I can say that having used the Mercury 2 system and a number of other taxi dispatch system Mercury 2 is the worst system I have ever come across. It is riddled with bugs, customer support is dreadful. Account Managers do not give you the full story regarding the problems. Invoicing wont work, drivers statements wont work, servers drop and crash and the problems are endless. I agree Mercury 1 was a good system, Mercury 2 is a very big backward step and anyone who values their customers will not touch the software.

    October 15, 2015 at 3:45 pm Reply
    • Ash

      Agree with you 101%… with Mercury 2 at the moment, can’t make my mind up who am gone go with. I think half of the problems with Mercury are deliberate for you to change to icabbi

      February 29, 2016 at 12:16 am Reply
  18. Dean

    I opened my cab office in Romford Essex 3 years ago with only myself as the driver, controller and carder. Now I have around 20 full time drivers and around 12 part time drivers. I use a cloud based system that costs me £15.00 per driver per month. Although I have not had a problem with the system but the pricing is fixed and does not change if the distension is changed. I was thinking of Cordic system if anyone can tell me the price and costs. I await your response. Many Thanks

    October 7, 2015 at 5:09 pm Reply
  19. Usman

    Hi all cab offices

    Today i am going to tell you about a dispatch system which works very fine
    and its only 6 pounds 50 pence per driver
    cloud based , don’t need to have any high cost server
    you can track you driver on map
    fix prices of your cab office as you want….
    can send text messages to drivers and passengers

    for the first month they are offering free trial without any registration fee
    very friendly people
    I started using it first used free for month after used one month paid period and paid after the month
    if you have small business i will strongly suggest you to use this one called cabadmin

    I can share their contact number over there must try it
    020 3000 7676

    July 16, 2015 at 12:30 pm Reply
  20. Flynn

    Anyone give info regarding Marandy Taxi system. I am looking to change my 150 car system .

    June 30, 2015 at 1:44 pm Reply
  21. shiraz

    Hello everyone :)

    Why don’t you guys try Cab Management System(CMS), just avoid paying high rents and advance payment, with CMS you will have the liberty to use your own hardware. A perfect solution for Minicab firm and even they have chauffeuring and school rum module in one system, means you will all these options in one software. i will highly recommend every one out there to use Cab Management System (CMS). they have very good and friendly technical support team,. been using them from 2 years.
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    June 23, 2015 at 10:42 am Reply
  22. Akmal

    Envoy taxi dispatch is the most affordable taxi booking, dispatch and management system. No need to have special hardware, software or pdas just login to the system and start taking booking and dispatch. drivers can download their app and get the jobs straight away, its so simple and smart visit http://www.taxidispatchsystems.co.uk

    March 14, 2015 at 2:12 pm Reply
  23. Catalin

    Why to pay more for less?
    You can try INSOFTDEV system (http://smart2car.com) that comes with everything in the standard package: mobile apps (passenger and drivers), webbooker and of course backoffice&dispatcher

    March 3, 2015 at 1:28 pm Reply
  24. David

    They don’t even answer the phone anymore. Spent 25 mins on hold this morning trying to get through to sales!!!

    February 23, 2015 at 11:48 am Reply
  25. sheffield

    Word of warning to Autocab Customers. Customer who have purchased the Premium APP will not receive any upgrades with new features, but just updates and bug fixes (even this is questionable as to how long you will receive these for free before they demand more money).

    February 7, 2015 at 3:31 pm Reply
  26. Jared

    Guys, there is an alternative, have a look at vToms, it’s new. Download it and test it out it free for now in beta stages.

    January 30, 2015 at 5:19 am Reply
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  27. Jon

    Does anybody have Cab Despatch system? If so how does it compare to Autocab?

    January 10, 2015 at 6:03 pm Reply
  28. Jon

    Have had Autocab Classic system for 6 years. Started with Zeta dataheads and have since updated to pdas at a considerable cost. We have recently started having connection problems where the ‘G’ on all the pdas turns yellow intermittently over a wide area. Has anybody else experienced this? Autocab keep saying it’s network issue. We were with BT and have recently moved to Vodafone. Any help/advice would be appreciated. Thanks

    October 20, 2014 at 12:59 pm Reply
    • ABC

      The G is for internet connection. And No, you are not the only company to suddenly suffer poor quality after upgrading to ghost, especially if you have the Classic PDA’s!!

      November 23, 2014 at 7:07 pm Reply
    • CAB

      Second That. Surprisingly the issue disappears when you upgrade to Android devices.

      January 30, 2015 at 2:40 pm Reply
    • Tony - YB Comms

      The G light is your connection to the office with the PDAs, if you have recently changed networks as well then its more than likely the network over Autocab. You need to try a different sim

      February 10, 2015 at 8:23 pm Reply
  29. mohammed alam

    my advice to people who are in the taxi trade don’t buy auto cab system the system has started having lot of problems and the back up support has gone very poor buy cordic system its better than any other system & its cheaper than auto cab in the long terms….

    September 4, 2014 at 9:51 pm Reply
  30. paul gray

    Citycomm telematics can supply your sim cards from as little as £1.75 per Mth http://www.citycommradios.com

    August 19, 2014 at 3:06 pm Reply
  31. paul gray

    Hi we at citycomm can offer a system aimed at the small to med taxis Business. easy start ups with no hidden charges http://www.citycommradios.com

    August 19, 2014 at 3:04 pm Reply
  32. Andrew

    Why not trying All-in-One Dispatch system All-in-One Dispatch system. The system is continuously developed and integrates 1back-office + 2web bookers + 1driver app + 4passengers apps? Everything starting from layout, to forms, labels and settings can be configured based on company needs.
    Cheers, Andrew

    July 15, 2014 at 9:19 am Reply
  33. apu

    After a decade of using and dealing with Autocab and I would no longer recommend them to anyone. Any company who uses fear of a rival company to sell it products says a lot about them! Also I have lost count as to the number of times they have promised me something when buying new equipment only for them to turn around and just shrug their shoulders. One would expect more integrity form a large company.

    June 26, 2014 at 11:12 am Reply
  34. johnrosa

    Infocabs is your solution to cab management system with customizes software for everything. Whether it is booking or displacement it gives a helping hand in upgrading speed,Take a look at taxi dispatch software

    May 20, 2014 at 10:42 am Reply
    • mr rahman

      Hi johnrosa, how long you using infocab software and how many cars you have.i have an appointment with them.i might get their software.please share you experience.

      May 21, 2014 at 5:47 pm Reply
  35. Rafal Zawisz

    Hi. I represent a Polish company. We have 200 cars. I am looking for a dispatch system. I would prefer the drivers to use smartphones. The first question is the price so will you be that kind and send estimated cost for the system you have/had to 19629taxi@gmail.com?

    Thanks in advance.

    April 22, 2014 at 7:33 pm Reply
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  36. Darren Green

    We have been loyal customers to Mercury for the last 10 years, however we are now looking for a new provider, as Mercury 2 is shockingly bad, full of bugs. Basically they have bought it to market too early. ( even though the project has been going on for 4 years ). My advise is don’t touch it for another year..stick with Mercury 1 which is a superior product, albeit very dated. Mercury 2 has a brilliant booking screen, but its full of faults, text back hasn’t been working, despatch has been all over the place, and prices fell by 20p when they did the last update for no apparent reason. Most big firms are moving over to cloud based solutions now where you don’t have the expense of servers , hardware and PDA’s. drivers down load and app and receive bookings on this, on their own smart phones. This is the future

    March 5, 2014 at 8:32 pm Reply
  37. Aloha Taxi

    Have any of you used Digital Dispatch Systems also know as DDS? Any problems people have had?

    February 19, 2014 at 2:02 am Reply
  38. louise maguire

    Hello Everyone,
    Hoping to get some advice. I own a taxi company with approx 40 cars & was thinking of buying the autocab ghost system with mino data units. Could anyone give advice on what to ask/watch for when dealing with autocab sales please?

    November 17, 2013 at 3:18 pm Reply
  39. Rosemary McClenaghan

    Hi Everyone – Alot of people posting here seem unhappy with the current offerings of Dispatch systems. I would like to invite people, including Rick to check out our easy to use, uncomplicated system at http://www.taxizapp.com. It is currently in beta so no charge at present and no credit card details need be given. Once out of beta it will be a pay as you go system based on your number of drivers. No contract and work is sent to the drivers iphone or android phone so no hardware to buy. In the office you require a computer with an internet connection. Check it out at http://www.Taxizapp.com – happy to hear any feedback/constructive criticism. Thanks, Rosie

    September 22, 2013 at 8:53 pm Reply
  40. Naseem

    Since July 2010 apologies.

    July 15, 2013 at 5:50 pm Reply
    • sky cars

      I would go with Cordic what ever you do DON’T go with AUTOCAB , I had the system 3 month and they have taken it back as it didn’t work but have sent me a bill for £26,000 i have no choice but to my business in to liquidation AUTOCAB will take no prisoners , what a nice company they are NOT , AUTOCAB was to make my bussiness better instead they made me go bust

      July 16, 2013 at 10:06 am Reply
  41. Naseem

    I own a taxi company with 35 drivers, since July I have been using mercury system, but now I am tired if mercury sales mans excuses & I am now looking to take my business else where, can some one giv advice about other systems Cordic or t dispatch look favorites in taking my business?

    July 15, 2013 at 5:50 pm Reply
  42. Neil

    Hello every one,i hope you all must be good.We all can see one thing clearly, that market competition is getting complex day by day. Now days software industry is even more aggressive and competitive. Aside from all these big giants in despatch software.one of my friend came across with a firm namely, Eurosoft tech. Which has been operating in this industry around for 5 years. Im just starting a new taxi business, and he recommend me to go for their software, his remarks were that their prices are comparatively cheap than any other competitor, and the software itself is remarkable, and friendly user. On the other hand, level of service is spectacular. I hope for the best, pray for me guys. Thanxxx

    July 1, 2013 at 7:40 am Reply
  43. sky cars


    Customer Support 3/10
    Customer Relations 1/10
    Value For Money 1/10
    User Friendly 1/10
    Worst one of all was the salesmen 0/10 When the salesmen phoned me and asked to hurry up and pay as he wanted his £1000 bonus for the sale , don’t no how he sleeps at night for ripping me off big time

    June 20, 2013 at 12:08 pm Reply
  44. simon

    Stay away from Autocab Ghost! It is nothing like the old classic system, with some much simple stuff missing that it boggles my mind. Its also a lot slower and lags when searching.
    Don’t for one moment think that it is an upgrade to Classic. Autocabs own line “80% of the classic parameters are in Ghost” itself is a statement that the software is half baked. In my opinion I would say that Ghost is missing more than 30-40% of the parameters of classic, some of which are never going to be developed. Oh and did I mention that it looks like a Mondeo (Ghost) next to a Ferrari (Classic).

    June 15, 2013 at 10:39 pm Reply
  45. Chris

    There are so many new Software companies out there…and more each day so why are we discussing these Names that charge the Earth! Why are so many of us looking at going round these famous names?
    We should form groups to get what we want & need.
    Cloud base, Vehicle mileage, tyres etc, Android app, customer booking & tracking are great with a real price that a group buying power can acheive…don’t you think so? I too am looking Brothers.

    June 15, 2013 at 3:23 pm Reply
  46. David

    One more thing, if you do go with autocab get MANY MORE DATA TERMINALS THAN YOU INITIALLY NEED!

    When you buy a full system the terminals are heavily discounted, when you buy them at a later date they are not! Autocab will instat on a 5 or 10 item min purchase, meaning if you have 50 drivers and 50 terminals for example, starting the 51st driver will involve an outlay of thousands of pounds.

    I am currently in the position of being unable to start drivers because it takes two weeks for my spares to be repaired and i cannot afford to pay out thousands of pounds for more spares, the ultimate effect is autocabs business mdoels is preventing us from growing, which ironically is the exact opposite of what its supposed to do!

    Cordic’s license model sounds good for the future, cheap spare PDA’s sounds like a dream….

    June 7, 2013 at 2:21 pm Reply
    • gary

      Hi All
      Don’t buy Auto-cab i got the system 4 months ago and it was a big mistake i was totally missed sold the system and has cost me £8000 to come out of the contract and they would not give me any money back not one penny and they are taking the system back aswell and still no money back £8000 for nothing they dont care about anyone but them self the system just didn’t work with the way we run are taxi business , I was with mercury for 8 years and have gone back to them wish i had never changed if anyone wants to contact me and talk about the worst taxi dispatch system in the UK then phone me on 02392 522522 I am taking them to small claims court to try and get some money back for something i don’t even own if anyone no’s anyone with a similar case with autocab please call or e,mail skycarsgosport@yahoo.co.uk many thanks

      June 11, 2013 at 2:22 pm Reply
  47. David

    We have used Autocab for 4 years now, the system in itself is ok, if incomplete. autocabs own engineers tell me to avoid the ghost product, 20 thousand beans for a prettier version of we already have9with more/different faults), albeit with an account package that actually works well, seems like a lot of beans.

    Support is TERRIBLE, two weeks wait to fix the battery “problem” on sigma dataheads, at £60 per time, how you can justify £60 to change a £1.19 battery and need to weeks to do it is beyond me.

    With all the support fees and hidden extras i suspect Autocab costs more than Cordic long term, we will certainly be looking at Cordic in future, whatever happens we will be moving away from Autocab and its ‘bespoke terminals with built in ongoing costs’ model asap.

    June 3, 2013 at 2:46 pm Reply
  48. Taxi man for years

    http://mercurytaxisoftware.co.uk/ don’t get it far to much money will bull shit you for a lot of money free desk top ask how much after a year I had it 45 PDAs 2 desk tops and after the year it was a lot of Money I paid for mercury cash I did not rent it I payd cash for it wood not go bk to it cabmaster lot better deal have alook at it I have bean doing taxis for 40 years so that says it all don’t do what I done you will no keep it in the office I had to sell up throw it I am bk now and what age deal throw cabmaster I got PDAs £500 I was payin cabmaster £60 got some pads my self with mercury still over £100 to put mercury in it big con and the end of the day it is jus a app when it go down will always say it is the Internet wot a joke I hat with mercury stay away from it by miles ……..

    May 23, 2013 at 10:09 pm Reply
  49. Mark

    Is cabmaster any good for 30 cars ??? Don’t want to pay a lot of money for it was thinking about pay as you go on cabmaster don’t want Mercury had it when I had 40 cars good to work with all it comes down to is thay want to much to run it cost me £££ and I did pay cash for it and still had to pay £££ for it amth for air time and up keep what a joke it was ….. Tell me about cab master someone thank you Mark. ???

    May 21, 2013 at 9:13 pm Reply
  50. eva

    hi, i started in the end with mercury
    they came to my office for training, and while doing so, they set up together with me my price list, plots and drivers>>>> i was very very very happy> I have to private mobile nr of one of the technich people, and i call him very oftenwith problems
    i amvery happy with them (but they are expensive!!!)

    April 7, 2013 at 7:20 pm Reply
    • Chris

      Hi Eva, I am with Mercury too and am in Colchester. Where are you based & how many cars. Nice to chat & we might compare notes from Mercury. 07723005742

      June 15, 2013 at 3:26 pm Reply
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      May 1, 2016 at 6:37 pm Reply
  51. Gareth

    We have had the Ghost system in now by autocab. It is a decent product. Missing some small features but overall has improved efficiency, as is very easy to use. Support though is second to none. Engineer turns up to our office if we ever have an issue, and training was done in our offices so we had a chance to learn the system in a familiar setting. Turned out to be a good purchase.

    April 4, 2013 at 4:57 pm Reply
  52. R. Jones

    autocab is very good we had it twice now but backup & service is my I.V.R system been off line 2 years THEY COME DOWN BUT NEVER SORT IT
    how they are stilling going started looking around

    April 1, 2013 at 8:43 am Reply
  53. Mas

    Been using the Cordic software for past 5 years. I can honestly say it was the best move we made. Cordic maybe expensive but in the long run it pays. The support is the best in the industry gives you real peace of mind. The quality of the software speaks for itself. The ease of use is amazing, from configuring to controlling. I highly recommend this product for anyone looking to upgrade. The team at Cordic are very helpful very professional.

    January 2, 2013 at 6:29 am Reply
  54. steve

    From the point of view of a taxi controller that has worked with both Cordic and Mercury i must say Cordic is by FAR the better product when controlling taxis. Infact, from my point of view as a controller, Mercury is Amatuer compaired to Cordic.

    However this is from a controllers view point, know little about it from an owners perspective

    December 17, 2012 at 11:29 pm Reply
  55. S K

    Hello everyone. Am planning on opening a Taxi/Private Hire firm. I wanted to know from existing taxi businesses which is a good user friendly and low cost Dispatch System for a new firm? Am going to be starting with around 5 to 10 drivers.

    Thank you

    November 28, 2012 at 11:46 pm Reply
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  57. eva

    hi everyone,i was wondering ifu could help me
    I am currently waiting for my pco private hire license, how long does it take till i get it?(send in the application 10 days ago)
    second i am very into looking up information about dispatch systems
    i spoke to Mercury, icabby,cms
    does any of u know any information about them?
    we are starting with +- 20 drivers and hope to go up.
    we for sure want the pda system
    waiting for your replies

    November 5, 2012 at 2:42 pm Reply
  58. Aadil

    We have been using the FREE system Mercury for the past 4 months, in that time we have already spent over £200 for each PDA, then theres the hardware, plus we have to buy Mercury’s airtime and pay a monthly support charge for the software, we were told this is the most affordable option availble in the market. We spoke to them about getting web bookings and they said they will want a fee per booking made via the web system on top of the charges they are already hitting us with. We’re starting up and have 15 drivers but Mercury seem to want to limit the amaount of profit we make by take take take with all their charges. One of the PDAs crashed and I thought it would be a simple switch it off and switch it on, turns out I have to pay Mercury to reprogram it. The software does it’s job, just, but I am experiencing glitches and spend a few hours each week on the phone to their suport team who are aware of the problems and are working on a fix, this should be available in Mercury 2 which they say is coming soon. I don’t know if we’ll be able to afford to move away from the Mercury after the 12 months as we’ve already invested hugely in them for the FREE product. My advice would be to look elsewhere and not be tempted by FREE as if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is, in my case it definitely is.

    October 13, 2012 at 4:41 pm Reply
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  59. Mohammed Hafiz

    Hi Guys,
    To Anyone interested…..
    We have recently upgraded our Despatch System and as a result with have several boxes filled with the older Autocab systems.
    Main Despatcher System + Backup Despatcher System
    Management System + Additional 2 Operators System
    35 Sigma Dataheads
    All Cabling and data modules, 1 Aerial.
    Voice equipment

    All and any offers appreciated and considered. We are not specifying any price, just willing to listen to all offers.

    Thanks for listening and advice appreciated.

    October 3, 2012 at 3:06 pm Reply
    • M Latif

      We looking for dipatching system if you still have them e-mail at latif5@msn.com

      March 28, 2013 at 4:15 pm Reply
    • bob baxter

      what sort of figure you looking for

      September 26, 2013 at 9:48 pm Reply
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  60. Suleman

    Im currently running 20 car company, and have been using the Mercury system for about 4 years. I have seen presentations from both Autocab and Cordic. Both were impressive, but i felt with autocab it was more of “where we have come from”, and with cordic, “where we are going to”.
    I do agree with a lot of the comments, that it is impossible to get any price breakdown from Autocab. They will quote a system price, but were very cagey of revealing the breakdown in terms of hardware, desktop licence, pda licence, support etc. At a push some prices were revealed, but only verbally, nothing in writing. Cordic on the other hand gave a complete price breakdown, so you know exactley what you are paying for.

    In terms of costs, like for like systems, 20 pdas and licences, and 2 desktop systems, hardware and licence, with one year support included were as follows.

    Mercury 1 Bean
    Autocab 1.25 Beans
    Cordic 2 Beans

    One other point which seems not to have been covered, is the actual ownership of the system. With Mercury you never own the licence, its a PAYG system. With the other two you will own the licences for the systems and the pdas. So the only running cost is the data sims and any support package you choose to take.
    This means that withy Mercury its never a business asset, but with the other two you own them outright.

    August 8, 2012 at 11:53 am Reply
    • Norman

      There is no licence scheme with Autocab pdas as well. Buy one , loose it, somebody steals it, you have to get a new pda to replace the old one so you are still losing a pda or at least cost of one.
      Regarding Ghost, it is pretty much similar to old Autocab system besides windows interface.
      Although it states lot of new features on their website for new Ghost system make sure to get them in writing while buying your system as few people I know of bought it and was told such and such features are extra. Such as Voice Recording…

      October 22, 2012 at 3:58 am Reply
      • MARK

        Well that really dose sound like Autocab

        February 9, 2013 at 3:34 pm Reply
        • andy

          True about Autocab. Why are Autocab pushing a whole new system is beyond my understanding. Really don’t like the interface on Ghost and cant see why the cant give customers the option of having it similar to the classic system. First to shout about new feature and then take 6 months to bring them the market and another 6 to actually get them to work! Awesome support team but also the most ignorant bunch I’ve come across, and they will talk down to you. If Autocab created a classic shell for the ghost I would really consider upgrading to it otherwise the classic is what I’m sticking with.

          April 15, 2013 at 5:28 pm Reply
  61. James

    An Alternative Review of Booking & Dispatch Systems

    Various blogs & opinions have been circulating but often based on out-of-date information and some ‘old wive’s’ tales which seem to permeate this industry!

    So let’s look at the 6 front runners – I’ll keep it alphabetic just to be even-handed:

    Top Six Companies (estimated number of UK users)

    Auriga (118)
    Autocab (800)
    Cabmaster (105)
    Cordic (280)
    Datamaster (61)
    Mercury (330)

    There are one or two ‘stalking horses’ around – tend to be non-UK system builders looking for a corner of the home market and these bear watching (MT Data, Mobile Knowledge, SIGTEC to name a few) but be aware that they do not have effective
    on-the-ground resource in the UK that the home teams have and only a handful of customers between them.

    Technical Quality of Software / hardware

    Auriga (34 employees)
    Always been solid with its ‘back office’ but the booking & dispatch function is over-complicated with a longer learning curve than you would expect for such a simple task. Originally based on the much-loved Sirius software, this has been replaced by the Evo-Cab suite and its new 360 Eclipse data terminal (seem to have abandoned the PMR market in real terms). Lots of features advertised but missing, noticeably, signature capture and some quite important ‘add-ons’ which users have come to expect as standard. The company has a ‘closed’ architecture so you need to pay if want any changes made. Taken over last year by the Canadian multinational Trapeze but frankly hasn’t seemed to make a difference as customer numbers continue to drop.

    Autocab (200 employees)
    Replaced its highly developed (over 17 years) Taxi dispatch with the new server-based Ghost system 2 years ago although it is taking the market some time to realise that they aren’t running a DOS system in Windows – they really aren’t but they have kept the redundancy feature by taking additional copies of the data on each PC – a real ‘belt & braces’ job. The software follows the ‘open’ architecture of Taxi which has been installed in more companies than any other manufacturer and allows the user to tailor the system to their own requirements. Autocab is the only ‘Turnkey’ manufacturer in the bunch making its own range of data terminals. The system can operate a mixture of data terminals on either PMR or GPRS or a combination of PMR/GPRS on the same circuit – that’s something that none of the competition can do!

    Cabmaster (14 employees)
    Has been round for a long time with a pedigree in the PMR market but now almost exclusively focussed on PDA devices and GPRS. The software is good but lacks some essentials with a ‘buggy’ reputation. If you are a small fleet (less than 50 cars) then you can get started with a ‘free’ download but the cost of your system is modular and driven by a regular licence to develop a revenue stream for the company. By the time you have added all the features you want you will probably find yourself paying more than you would on a company running a ‘conventional’ purchase pricing model. Because of the low staff numbers, support will depend on how many other customers have a problem!

    Cordic (35 employees)
    This company was born out of the break into the GPRS / PDA market just after the Millenium so has no PMR ‘roots’. Nevertheless, out of all the providers who base their dispatch on mobile phones, Cordic’s C-paq has a reputation for having a ‘complete’ suite of software plus, most important, automatic upgrades and a high level of support. Ongoing support costs are reasonable but the cost of individual mobile licences is high and may well price a lot of potential customers away from Cordic.

    Datamaster (5 employees)
    Established 1997 with roots in the PMR market – I expect that there are still a few stalwarts out there still using the ‘scroll’ data head although most will now be on PDA’S. Have a dedicated and loyal band of customers but not enough resource to support what they have, certainly not enough to grow (the company actually tried to make a marketing feature out of downsizing their offices in Warrington). Will re-sell airtime as a part of the package at expensive rates. Hard to see how they can support more than one customer at a time who has a problem. On the plus side, Datamaster is probably the cheapest and the software works reasonably well.

    Mercury (26 employees)
    Oldest co-partner with 02 in the UK and largest provider of PDA’s (although Cordic would give them an argument about that!). Another company which has grown out of the GPRS/PDA market. Like Cabmaster, there are lots of ‘free trials’ to get you on board but the cumulative running costs from year 3 onwards make this an expensive option. As you would expect, the software is comprehensive and does what it says ‘on the tin’. Two big deficiencies are the inability to use the postcode as a booking feature and the fact that drivers can ‘cheat’ the GPS! When the latest revision, Mercury 2, is eventually launched (Jan 2013 is the latest date) it my solve these problems but the fact that ‘beta’ versions of Mercury2 out there haven’t been able to deal with credit work would bother me as a potential user. Support and development can’t be compared with the likes of Cordic and Autocab who actually have a large enough resource to get the job done. Very popular with a propagated myth that they are the biggest & the best – they aren’t.


    These companies are in a competitive market which, ultimately, evens out differences.

    In many respects you will get what you pay for. At the bottom end of the scale, Datamaster’s software is cheap but very difficult to see how you could expect a sensible level of support & service. Also, with such limited resource, how is the company going to develop software to stay abreast of the latest features expected by end-users.

    Auriga & Autocab come from a ‘conventional’ PMR background with a capital purchase/lease model. They have always been regarded as expensive but have justified this on the basis of actually maintaining a solid resource to develop and support product – there really isn’t any argument with that.

    Those companies who sprang out of or moved into the GPRS market quite naturally followed the profit-model of the airtime providers – revenue stream. The typical model here is that it’s cheap to start up but becomes increasingly expensive as the effect of the revenue stream (licences on everything) begins to take hold.

    The message here is that you are buying a system for the ‘long haul’ and that you should not just be looking at the first year’s establishment costs but the total costs (including support) over a five year run (the average replacement cycle for data dispatch systems).


    Most of the systems I have looked at will do most of what you would expect some have more features than others.

    Having the ability to change how you system works for you is important so, look for ‘open architecture’ otherwise you may find yourself paying through the nose further down the road.

    Take the five-year look at things, not just in terms of cost but also as the questions, Will they still be there? Will they develop the software? Can they develop the software?

    How much flexibility is there? Can I use different mobile devices? Am I tied to one means of communication?
    Looking at all these features it has to be said that one company actually ticks all the boxes in terms of choice, particularly if you have a traditional PMR set up, and that is Autocab. Auriga would have been there a few years ago but indicators are that they have slipped and are continuing to slip in the league table (their resource has also effectively downsized in the past 2 years, never a good sign).

    If you are just looking at GPRS/PDA type systems (but remember that the conventional companies also do these) then Mercury seems to be the biggest but not, unfortunately, the best with those deficiencies in the dispatch module. That accolade must go to Cordic for good professional software and support.


    Overall all-round flexibility with an end-user choice about everything is Autocab – pricing is not the issue it used to be and there can be no doubt regarding the resource – this company has more full-time programmers than anyone else in the market and the latest software is slap-bang up to date.

    Worth looking at Cordic if you are willing to wear the high cost of the mobile licence.

    Worth looking at Datamaster if you haven’t got much to spend but don’t expect the product to change much!

    July 30, 2012 at 9:49 am Reply
  62. ValeriyPGorbatenko

    Hello Rick,
    As you said, you personally shopped around to see what other products were on the market, I want to share my new app – U Taxi Dispatch which is available free of cost. Compatible with iPhone and Android. App which helps riders to book taxi and booked riders for the taxi drivers…

    July 4, 2012 at 11:12 am Reply
  63. Ricky

    AVOID AUTOCAB GHOST AT ALL COSTS…. SERIOUSLY UNFINISHED PRODUCT. Typical of Autocab!!!! And as for the phone app… What a joke!!

    July 2, 2012 at 4:41 pm Reply
  64. saifz

    i have complete back office system with major Call center, dispatcher, Cashier, HR and Setting modules
    and Android in vehicles, the back office system also integrated with IVR
    if any one interested please let me know thanks so i can give online demo
    we can sign contract on lease, per job, per vehicle or total payment of product

    June 4, 2012 at 9:37 pm Reply
    • M Latif

      We are looking for dispatcing system for our office and cars.

      March 4, 2013 at 8:53 am Reply
      • Cathy

        « On ne reprend pas racine dans une terre abandonnée en même temps que le prénom qui l’a vue naître. Trop de temps a passé. Tout a changé, à commencer par soi. Et puis on ne recommence pas le film d’une vie. »Mais est-on pour autant &lopna;&ubsq;définitivement d’ici »?Il me semble que l’exil est une amputation, un enrichissement aussi bien sûr , mais qu’on reste exilé à vie

        May 1, 2016 at 6:11 pm Reply
    • M Latif

      We are looking to buy new or used Dispatching system for our office. e-mail latif5@msn.com

      March 28, 2013 at 4:33 pm Reply
    • yaser

      hi,We’re a small company with 10 Taxis. We need a software for managing our system. I read the comments and knew about your demo about the subject. Can i have your demo?

      November 8, 2014 at 2:09 am Reply
  65. Kevin Peters

    I was looking to go to a system from pen and paper running 4 cars on voice – I got the Cabmaster Payg system for free and it’s brilliant – I’ve paid nothing and if I want to add PDA’s in the future I can.

    May 16, 2012 at 2:31 pm Reply
  66. The Flyer

    I use the new Ghost solution from Autocab. I’ve got to say that after using other systems many which are mentioned here, i’m more than happy now using ghost. It’s easy to use, and the accounts section is fantastic. I can book jobs really quickly regardless of cash or account. How many other Taxi companies on here have used ghost. I’m sure you will agree with me that the system has moved leaps and bounds!

    May 11, 2012 at 10:32 pm Reply
  67. T Dispatch

    All your problems are solved with the first full featured cloud software. The features and the reliability are not even compared with the marketing leaders.

    May 6, 2012 at 6:55 pm Reply
  68. Peter Hopkins

    I have used the Mercury system as a driver but now own a small taxi company, to save costs I use windows access as my data base to store bookings which works a bit like the admin area of Mercury, the best thing about it is that it is free however, I am now growing my company and looking for a dispatch system anyone else who has any info regarding Mercury (the admin side) I would love to hear from them.

    April 22, 2012 at 7:18 pm Reply
  69. Mat Guillarme

    Hi Rick, we are setting up shop with a decent size fleet but are struggling to choose our system. I do agree with most posts here that Autocab is a bit behind Cordic. What about DDS and DIPLOMAT ? Anything about them ?

    March 13, 2012 at 9:02 pm Reply
  70. taxi lady xx

    hi i have woked withboth cabmaster and in the last 5months cordic i think it has its great point i.e the goggle mapping and traickin is great i find it alot easier to access things through system but as for working with a fleet off 500 cars and maybe 200 account holders cordic simply dosent work with such a high volume and from a controllers side off it its totally crap u have no control over the work the ivr system doesnt know when a plot is full and will flood the system causing very stressful shift and the pulling plots are a joke aswell most drivers are misrable and where promised its all good in theory and cordic reps can talk the talk when comes to walkin the walk its a thob off! overall cabmaster had its faults but as again from a controllers point i found it alot more easier to work with customers where happy staff where happy and would recommend that to any1 by FAR xx

    February 27, 2012 at 7:19 pm Reply
  71. Norman

    Well whatever your choices are avoid Autocab at all cost. They are pretty much cheapest to start up but very very expensive in the long run. You as a taxi firm owner have to calculate in 10 years time what the total cost would be and not on initial setup.

    Lets take 2 systems as an example. Autocab and Cordic.

    Cordic might charge you extra then other systems in initial start-up but they do have fixed prices and it is available anytime you make a request and when ever you request them they are always same prices. They do know IT technology and they move together with IT improvements. They make the most of the technology in hand. Such as using proper servers/server components/redundancy/ checking performance requirements / fail-overs. Cordic uses/sells you a license so you can have thousands of pdas it doesn’t matter to them if you paid 500 licenses as you can only use 500 pdas with 500 licenses. Cordic supply’s the programs you need for your pdas. So you can install as many times as you like in situation where you need to reset your pdas.

    Autocab has lower initial start-up cost but any extras you ask for later on will cost you an arm and a leg. Every time you call and ask for a price for certain features they will quote you all different prices and sometimes way too higher then your initial setup cost. They know nothing about IT technology. No backups/redundancy, they use cheap bottom line shuttle ipx systems. Easy to fail/ no proper cooling etc. Autocab charges per product and does not use licensing scheme. You might have 200 drivers and for that you might have 200 pdas. Any one of them is lost/stolen/broken they will make you pay full price rather then supplying you with a replacement license. Autocab does not give you any program to reinstall your pdas. So if you have a problem with pda and you just want to reset it you will have to send it back to them. Thus owner of the pda ( driver ) cannot work until pda is fixed and returned back to you. You might keep extra pdas for this purpose however this will cost considering number of pdas break down nearly everyday.

    I can just go on and on as i have used both systems. So all i can say is ask yourself below questions before deciding.
    * Calculate how much each system will cost you with a-y-z features in 5 / 10 years.
    * Never accept nor believe any salesmen word before buying into the system. Make sure you have written quotes for each individual features you might need.
    * Grab yourself a yellow pages and look for any taxi firms advert with data dispatch system. Call them and ask them which system they are using and what they feel about. Don’t call the dispatch/software companies and ask them which office is using their system as the office they will send you will most probably knows what to say to you and what not.
    * Make your planing properly. Such as get your website online, do take online bookings/credit card payments in your start-up plan. Don’t leave it to later on as it will cost you more later on then on your starting cost.
    * Ask them everything and get the answers in writing. Double check and confirm the details with them as in case of Autocab they will simply tell you that the person who has given you that info/price was wrong or they have left the company and any promise they have given you is not valid. So don’t fall for that.
    * If you don’t know about computers or IT, hire an engineer so when you are talking to them regarding system/software your engineer can tell you more information regarding hardware used in the system, ups or downs of their dispatch system in terms of redundancy/backup.
    * If dispatch system is using a pda phones then you can talk to mobile operators and ask them for sim only mobile data plans as you can get sim only data plans as low as £2 + vat per month. Before deciding go to any shop and buy yourself pay as you go sim cards and use them to see how their speed compares. As i have used most of them and depending on their coverage area and your operating area you might get different results. However see below for their speed/latency/coverage and customer support.

    Vodafone – v.good/v.good/v.good/v.good – connections hardly drop unless maintenance.
    T-mobile – v.good/v.good/good/good – connections hardly drop unless maintenance.
    Orange – not good/not good/v.good/v.good – connections drop randomly and frequently.
    O2 – v.good/v.good/good/good – connections hardly drop unless maintenance.
    BT Mobile – v.good/v.good/v.good/not good – – connections hardly drop unless maintenance however let down by very very bad customer support. Err which customer support as you cannot get hold of anyone to ask them why your sims are not connecting.

    Good luck…

    January 20, 2012 at 9:50 am Reply
    • Rick.Seymour

      A great review and thank you very much for adding your feedback.

      I agree with your comments about Orange, their GPRS connection is/was a little unstable, although not agreeing with comment on O2 customer service. I was very impressed with their data team who you could speak to in person and diagnose issues.

      Agree that all taxi companies need an in-house IT person to do initial diagnoses of problems between the the Dispatch system and Windows.

      Thank you again for your great comment!!

      January 20, 2012 at 8:05 pm Reply
  72. stephen whitby

    We’re a very small company covering a large rural area as opposed to street work in a large town. We cover 2 or 3 towns and several villages. I’ve used Autocab with another company, but felt there was no ‘operator imput’, ie. local knowledge and traffic conditions counted for nothing. I would like to integrate Google maps, calender and sms into a system sent from an office. Does such a system exist?

    December 14, 2011 at 10:54 am Reply
  73. Adrian Howarth

    Hi there, thanks for your artcle. Interesting. We are an airport transfer company based in Malaga. Do you know of any software that could work for us? We are looking something that integrates with website and also manages the bookings. Thanks massively in advance for any help. Cheers, Ade

    November 25, 2011 at 9:30 am Reply
  74. brett

    Have you looked at DDS Taxi book? I think you have been asked by someone else but can’t find a reply. I have the system which is good as its internet based but I have a lot of issues… no… a lot of issues!
    It was the only one I could find 18months ago which was internet based call back and TEXT back easy to use (booking jobs) but there are a lot of faults! I’m now looking for a replacement as the service level as dropped for the cost. I expect silly things like charging drivers twice for the same job not to happen…. I have endless e-mails of things I have had to have change which should never have been wrong.
    If you wish to discuss some of these before I have them drawn up checked (for legal reasons) before setting up a new website for discussions to taxi book it will be called Taxi Book DDS dispatch solutions, questions answers, being designed as I type..

    October 30, 2011 at 4:46 pm Reply
  75. John Boyle

    Website still being set up presently by the way.

    Typing on an iPad here, so forgive the shorthand.

    Looking for a web based system for taking bookings
    A system that when job is sent automatically to a driver, the driver then gets sat nav route to collection point / delivery point.
    If meter is linked into system and sends back when started, final fare price to the web based database.

    Let’s have a chat – if you have time.

    John Boyle
    00353 868 208 108

    October 28, 2011 at 11:56 pm Reply
  76. Atare

    What do you think is the Major Problem for Mecury because it seems to be a very reliable software for taxi companies?

    October 27, 2011 at 4:02 pm Reply
    • Rick.Seymour

      Mercury’s problems are little to do with current booking software and more to do with people’s expectations of it. (Still unaware if Mercury2 has been released, with it being talked about in April 2009).
      Like all taxi booking systems it’s how the drivers interact with management and the dispatcher

      October 27, 2011 at 6:14 pm Reply
  77. Raja


    We are running a hackney company with 55 black cabs and now thinking for PDA system.
    One concern is when drivers pick a job they normally do not show on PDA that they were flagged down and accept another job from the base and try to do the both causing delay to second job.
    Would you advise how it can be avoided and which system is good,money and quality wise?

    October 4, 2011 at 9:39 pm Reply
    • Rick Seymour

      This problem is certainly not confined to your company.
      “Job stacking” can be a real nightmare for companies, as drivers do not understand the ramifications 1) of letting customers down 2) failure to comply with the Licensing Act.

      Having any GPS system (PDA or radio) can be used to solve this problem, but once you have it in place you need to define company policies for how the GPS system will be used. I.e. penalties for not doing a job when received, or being in the incorrect “status”, e.g. POB
      This will change the ethos in the company and you need to be aware (and strong) about any driver backlash

      Most systems will have a “GPS Screen” that will tell a dispatcher the location of the drivers, it will be down to a good dispatcher to catch the drivers that partake in “job stacking”

      October 4, 2011 at 10:08 pm Reply
    • Dave

      Try Cordic for your answers with Black cabs and how their system deals correctly with ALL aspects you mentioned. Cheers DJ

      February 9, 2012 at 12:14 pm Reply
    • saifz

      sir i can give you demo which already in use from last 3 years and definitly solve your problem for flag and assigned trip from back office

      June 4, 2012 at 9:22 pm Reply
    • saifz

      Dear i can give you demo which already in use from last 3 years and possibly solve your problem for flag and assigned trip from back office

      June 4, 2012 at 9:24 pm Reply
  78. Jason Deakin

    I disagree with your pricing calculations. I carefully analysed every system on the market when I bought Cordic and they were very similarly priced to everyone else over a realistic investment cycle. I’m talking in the region of 1.3 beans to 1.2 beans Some of the others hide a lot of costs until you sign up and the sting is in the small print.

    Also Cordic’s software is not just ahead of the rest, it is light years ahead.

    September 19, 2011 at 4:29 pm Reply
  79. Mas172

    Cordic by far the best from the moment you sign the contract to getting your system installed you will instantly know you made the right choice. Everything is brilliant even the support at 4.00am. Highly recommended.

    August 28, 2011 at 1:20 am Reply
  80. Skinelliott

    hi im looking information as to the best system to operate a 50 car depot we currently operate on radios at the minute, an would you have any idea on cost on whether to buy/lease or rent to buy as to the best solution. to put it bluntly i dont have a clue where to start. We are based just outside Belfast

    March 31, 2011 at 5:11 pm Reply
    • Rick Seymour

      The big question you must first ask is… which technology… forget the “system” until you’ve decided on this.
      I take it that when you say “radios” you mean voice radio.. and yes 50 cars is the real limit for voice communication (assuming your drivers are busy)

      How far out to your drivers travel? (Regularly) … are radio dataheads appropriate
      What is mobile phone signal strength?
      What mobile phone “data tariffs” available?
      Smart phones use data over the air to transmit job acceptance etc to the office. This is one of the biggest costs.

      Who are you doing this for? You, your dispatcher or the drivers?
      How much (realistically) could you increase driver charges to mitigate increased costs? (Millers increased charges by £7 per week to “radio rents” (95 to 102 pw), which drivers accepted without complaint)

      Next big question… can you afford it? :) I’d recommend and outright purchase rather than a rental scheme.

      Take a trip to other taxi companies who use different systems (preferably ones who have changed to get a balance of opinions).

      Remember your whole business is dependant on two things….. the phone system working… a good dispatch system to get jobs to drivers. I’d definitely invite the companies to come along and do a presentation to you, but seek independent advice beforehand then clarify issues that other people have had during the presentation…..

      Take care

      April 5, 2011 at 12:41 pm Reply
    • saifz

      yes i have complete system and i can give you demo which already in use from last 3 years

      June 4, 2012 at 9:25 pm Reply
  81. Skinelliott

    we are a 50 car depot an considering going for the data heads is there 1 you could recommend

    March 24, 2011 at 8:04 pm Reply
  82. Peter

    Have you ever checked prices over a 7 year life cycle you may find the cordic price is not that dear
    I have run many cab companies and have done many price comparsons over the last 15 years
    they came top every time there are others you did no include who i found better than some you had
    CabMaster should have rewrote there software completly when going over to PDA and Windows if they had had the same zeal as when David wrote the first DOS version all those years ago they would have been number one

    March 7, 2011 at 8:15 pm Reply
  83. Willem Muller

    Hi Rick

    I am a founder of startup in London. We are building a fleet management solution for small taxi companies (30 vehicles or less), and have come accross an interesting debate in our system design. I have a technical question which I’d be grateful for any feedback you may have.

    As you mention, most dispatch systems rely on zoning or plotting geographical areas, and letting the taxis form queues in these zones. Jobs are allocated to the first driver in the queue per zone. We were initially planning to implement this in our product but I have my suspicions if this is the best way to go about it. Would it not be better to simply allocate jobs to the closest available driver? Is the purpose of zoning to ensure that drivers are distributed more evenly?

    I have a hunch that the origin of this feature which seems common in almost all dispatch systems may have been introduced 10 years ago when route calculations were an time consuming thing to do on the server, and zoning greatly reduces the complexity. Or would you disagree based on your experience?

    We’d appreciate any thoughts you have on the issue!


    January 23, 2011 at 10:05 pm Reply
    • Rick Seymour

      Your assertion regarding zones is entirely correct, when “plotting” was based on the idea of stacks.. with pieces of paper and nails (Which is the way one copmany actually used to allocate jobs).

      Then along came GPS, however the dynamic of plots didn’t change. Personally I believe this came from historical reasons so that companies could transition from one system to another. But also one must think of the problem from the perspective of a driver… who on a quiet Tuesday evening might not get any jobs at all where-as one of their collegues might “clean up”.

      Most systems out there can allocate on closest driver, irrespective of zones, however based on your size I would recommend that you run on manual allocation of jobs, so that they can be fairly distributed across the drivers…. remember of course that THEY and not the people that phone up are your business.

      So, yes I’d let the computer do the work to determine the closest driver, but let a dispatcher add the human element to the decision.

      Thanks for your message

      January 23, 2011 at 10:16 pm Reply
      • Justice

        No no no, it’s just my … uh… over clocked AMD 3500 (no clue the speed) with a gig of RAM (which can compile every Flash control in under 3 se30ods&#82cn; I’ve tested) had a hard time saving, and editing files over 30 slides… sometimes even 19 gave it grief. I’m guessing this has to do with the audio narration files. Files without narration appear to be authored faster, so I was curious what your experience was; it appears to be the same. Have you tried with narration yet?

        May 1, 2016 at 6:33 pm Reply
    • saifz

      i 100% agreed that zoning helps to make efficient algorithim to find deserving driver we already implemented that.. but there are more attributes which algorithim have to check like required vehicle type, is lift etc etc.. but system should allow user manual human interaction
      we used these terms as BCR and TCR

      June 4, 2012 at 9:30 pm Reply
  84. Sicohen32

    Really undecided! I have 15 cars in a busy walk in private hire operator office with several account customers. My businbess is localised. Not sure whether to go with mercury or cabmaster, both seem affordable. Can any1 swey me!

    December 27, 2010 at 1:52 pm Reply
  85. Silvertown Taxis

    I am in the process of thinking of moving from autocab to cordic and would like your views on this i run a 45 car system email silvertown.taxis@btconnect.com thanks john

    October 5, 2010 at 10:28 am Reply
  86. Morautos453

    I live in Colombia south america and i am directing a company with 1200 cars, and looking to visit some companies in the U.S to get some information, can you help me to get in touch with some of them?

    October 4, 2010 at 1:46 am Reply
  87. Myeneneh

    What has happend to your PHP booking system development.

    August 18, 2010 at 12:56 am Reply
    • Rick.Seymour

      Building a system from scratch is a major project. Technically it isn’t too hard but the programme would just become huge and without initial finance there is no way I’d start a project of such magnitude.

      October 4, 2011 at 10:32 pm Reply
  88. Joe

    Autocab.net isn’t happening. It’s been an investment disaster for Autocab thus far. Because it has a reputation as an utterly horrible company to work for, staff are employed on a revolving door basis. The project has a team to take the development process from A to B, then a whole new team picks up where the previous one left off, to point C… etc.. If it ever gets finished, do not be a guinea pig for it: it will inevitabily be a turd. But a well sold one to any suckers.

    July 14, 2010 at 11:15 pm Reply
  89. Jason

    Any Reviews on Taxi mate, (softsol software). I'm currently looking for a new despatch system. We are a chauffeur company using a (DBS) despatch system but they when belly up in late 2008 and i had to by my data back from the liquidators, I don't whant to be in cought like that again. regards. jason

    July 6, 2010 at 5:04 pm Reply
  90. PC Healer LTD

    I agree with Sonia I run a PC Repair comapany and one of my customers users Mercury. There comapny harddisk is failing so I will need to replace the harddisk and re-install Mercury desktop software. So I phoned Mercury to ask if they had an installation CD and install guide but was met by a very blunt support rep who said no and they would have to take the whole PC up to them just to install the software! Maybe this company has a niche in the market but it wont be for long and as soon as any other company launches similar software with minimal customer service skills I would reccomend you dont touch Mercury with a barge pole.

    July 2, 2010 at 12:18 pm Reply
  91. Sonia

    We have been ween Mercury for nearly 15 months…We are a fleet of nearly 80 vehicles, established for 15yearsTheir direct talking sales rep expects you to attend a training course in Nottingham to train you on the system. 2 weeks after attending they visited our offices, configured the software and left us to it.We were expected to set up our drivers, plots (draw lines across a map to seperate them into plots) and prices. At training they make several claims, the most common being we will support you however their communication is extremely poor. You call back again, again and again and finally when you are close to bursting point they help you out. I cannot understand why they literally make you have an extra screen, they claim its to use a MAP and see all your drivers but you cannot see what road your driver is on unless you zoom in so its a total waste of money.We had a few teething problems at the start, the software was at fault, they took a long time to resolve it. When we called their 24 hour emergency service with one controller in our office at 3am, whilst he was speaking to them, our company phone rang so he answered to take the job, the mercury rep on the other line told him “you have to speak to me if you phone me otherwise I will not help you”.To summarise, the software is simple and straight forward but so is Cordics, Cab Master, Marandy and Autocab. Their communication across the board is very poor and their customer service staff are very rude. I have never experienced such poor customer service, Macdonalds have alot to teach them.Why they expect you to pay them money for their software and then want you to set everything up is totally beyond me. They all have very rehearsed excuses i.e. we want you to be in control, in other words if anything goes wrong you cannot blame us as opposed to why don't we do it together and help you because this is our business and we want you to get the most out of it..We have not renewed our contract for obvisious reasons – hope this helps someone as I was looking for several reviews prior to contacting Mercury and found none. Be warned their sales rep will come round and tell you how so and so are doing brilliant thanks to them..

    June 25, 2010 at 3:59 pm Reply
  92. Mark Goldberg

    Great article, can you tell me the best products for use in the United Sates?

    June 6, 2010 at 4:09 pm Reply
  93. Tony

    I’ve been constructing a custom reporting tool for the company I work for, for use with Autocab.

    I’ve found Autocab does not use MySQL to store its job information. It uses custom fixed-width hex files to store job data, user messages, driver message etc. It does however use MySQL for the IVR function, or rather the IVR system Autocab uses utilises MySQL. SQLite is used for the mapping functions.

    Word on the grapevine is Autocab’s next major version(Autocab.NET)a will fully utilise a MySQL backend to store all its data.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:16 am Reply
  94. Tony

    So I’ve been tinkering with Autocab for a while now found out the following information.

    Current Autocab versions do not use MySQL to store job information, it uses a custom fixed-width hex format and separate files to store different job types as well as user messages, driver messages etc. It does however use MySQL for its IVR system, or rather the IVR system Autocab integrates with uses MySQL. SQLite is used in the mapping functions.

    I’ve been making a custom reporting tool for the company I work for for use with Autocab and this is how I came about the above.

    Word on the grapevine is Autocab’s next major version (Autocab.net) will be fully utilising a MySQL backend to store all its data.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:12 am Reply
  95. kuldip

    Hi Rick
    We are thinking of starting a taxi company operating threw GPRS. we have been looking at diffrent despatch systems and i see you have done a review on various companys i was looking at the Marandy system and i was wondering what you think of the system?
    Kind Regards K****.

    March 2, 2010 at 12:39 pm Reply
  96. john collins

    hi, had a demo today not at all sure we need such a hitec system, we have tried cb radio but driver error put a end to this.we run 10cars, is there a low cost system that works?.

    February 26, 2010 at 10:52 pm Reply
  97. Hussain

    Hi Rick,
    I run a amall firm with 10 cars. Could you advice me which is the best sytem for me. I thought of going with Autocabs but im not too sure. Also is it wise to start of a dispatch system with pda’s as currently all my drivers are used to using cb radios.

    February 24, 2010 at 7:36 pm Reply
    • Rick Seymour

      With company of 10 cars I would actually recommend staying on voice
      radio, as a even semi decent operator can handle 30 drivers at once.
      I would recommend a computerised booking system though to speed up and
      improve office efficiency.
      My favourite system was Mercury by Excel. Autocab would be good if you
      want to maintain your voice radio and then migrate to data radio.
      Ultimately don’t upgrade for the sake of upgrading. Get your office
      staff in to see what other efficiencies can be made. Keep them
      involved in the process as they will be using the software 24/7.

      February 24, 2010 at 7:53 pm Reply
  98. joe

    hi have you view the evo system? The company is auriga systems base in the uk. http://www.auriga.co.uk.

    February 24, 2010 at 4:19 pm Reply
  99. john collins

    Hi Rick,
    I have just taken over a small taxi company in XXXX. Currently we have 7 cars and hope to move up to 10 in 2mths.Have you researched the Taxibook DDS system.I believe their systems are widely used in Scandanavia.i intend installing one of them in our office,Do you reccomend them? john collins

    February 19, 2010 at 9:42 pm Reply
  100. Simon

    Mercury 9exel Management ) i dont recomemmd anyone good system but too much hassle system breakdown whle backing up itself. Not rialable but end of day Cheap Solution. for starter as exel management advertised Mercury 2 which is far better than Cordic cPAQ. i had personally saw that system but when its gonna come in the market God knows. Cordic good System but too pricy Help ppl only care about what support package you are on if you are 9 to 5 and call them 18:00 they want you 2 wait till 9 in the morning so anyone going for it plz check and everything is Expensive and pricy..

    November 13, 2009 at 12:47 am Reply
  101. Prahlad

    I would suggest you to try To-N-Fro Taxi Booking Software.


    November 2, 2009 at 6:31 am Reply
    • Rick Seymour

      I’ve reviewed the videos you have for To-N-Fro Taxi booking software and find it wanting. Using two input methods (clicking and typing) are not the norm in a fast paced taxi booking office. The software might be good for less than 10 car company but beyond that I cannot recommend your software.

      September 12, 2011 at 6:25 am Reply
      • Mervyn

        I was interested in your comment about dispatchers not wanting to type and click – if instead of clicking there is a short code would that help? I have looked at some systems which seem to be a mixture but no one has said anything about this. Most of our dispatchers cannot type anyway? If things are in a drop down list is this easier to choose? Thanks for any help

        January 25, 2013 at 9:45 pm Reply
  102. Frank Gardner

    I had a booking system through eprivate hire / tobias it spent most of its time offline with errors and data conections. never really got off the ground, i’m now trying to recover the monies invested into there system, i think its great that these reviews are available… i wish i had read them first.

    October 22, 2009 at 1:49 pm Reply
  103. Andy

    I dont think you have given a very fair account of Autocab it has over 600 Companies using the software and has been developed around it’s users also it’s data terminals are very robust and easy to use.

    October 15, 2009 at 9:44 pm Reply
  104. patrick

    i would recomend cabdespatch in kent talk to bob evans you wont be disapointed i dont think you will do better for the money he is not a salesman but an operator like you and me.

    October 12, 2009 at 8:37 pm Reply
    • Surjit Singh

      Greeting Patrick,
      My family runs a small Private Hire company in Warwickshire, 10 cars on weekend and 5 cars during the week days. We are considering to computerize our current voice and manual system by using the CabDespatch system. Do you have any advice for us please?

      Kind regards,
      Surjit Singh

      July 11, 2012 at 7:33 pm Reply
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  105. Jeff Aherne


    Come and have a look at ROCS.

    Will buy you lunch as long as it doesn’t breach your objectivity..!!

    Look forward to hearing from you.


    October 12, 2009 at 2:19 pm Reply
  106. Bolaji

    Hi Rick,

    God bless you for your expert word of advise on despatch systems. I am in the process of starting off a taxi firm and would firstly like to ask your opinion on the best value for money despatch system that provides the most up to date functions., I’ll also like to enquire about the best mobile phone network to use as well as the best telephone system for the office.How many computer’s would you advise us to start with in the office for a fleet of five cars and what would you say is the best way to go about employing the best drivers. And finally what is the best way to market ourselves from your experience. Thank you so much and remain blessed.

    October 8, 2009 at 3:03 pm Reply
  107. Mamoon Razaq


    I run a small taxi company with a fleet of 10 vehicles. Currently look to expand further and offer additional services. Also, looking to offer a text based booking facility, which I would like to be integrated into the despatch system. Can you please recommend a good despatch system that would allow me to do this as well as one that would be easy to implement and learn as a first timer.

    Thank you

    October 6, 2009 at 10:31 pm Reply
  108. Yasin Hussain

    Hi i just wanted your opinion i have a taxi company which runs 35-40 cars no account work all cash work in rochdale area which data dispatch system would you recomend me to go with thank you.

    October 5, 2009 at 10:47 am Reply
  109. Clinton Murphy

    Hi Rick, we are a boutique sized taxi co based in Auckland, New Zealand seeking a taxi despatch software solution. I am not overly impressed with local NZ/AUS based systems and now looking to other markets as a viable option and those based in the UK look really good. Given that the internet and evolving technologies brings the world closer together, technical supply and support is almost geographically irrelevant. We like the look of Cordic, Mercury and Cab Master, but trying to deal with them is proving difficult. I would welcome any feedback or assistance that you may be able to provide? Thanks …C

    July 5, 2009 at 1:55 pm Reply