An idea is actually a proposition for a feature of autonomous taxi service. A portion of autonomous taxis cruise around the city and can be stopped by raising an arm (hailing a yellow taxi in New York).
Sometimes your battery dies and you need a taxi home.
Instead of requesting and waiting for a ride, you see a taxi and want to stop it because it's right in front of you.
It can help autonomous taxi services to determine how to distribute their vehicles for minimal waiting time
For the reasons above, you see an autonomous taxi approaching and raise an arm. If the taxi is empty, it will give you a sign that it noticed you by flashing the lights or a glowing taxi sign on the roof. For the recognition of raised arms, multiple cameras used for driving would be used.
Sharing a ride and earning a discount
If it's not empty, but soon ending a ride, it will give a user an option to choose if it allows the joint ride for the last mile. Since it cannot know where the passenger who requests a ride will go, this option would not be available until 2 mins until the destination. However, if the current passenger accepts, it would reduce its taxi ride price by 10%. Consequently, the ride requested by raising an arm would be 10% more expensive. In any case when the ride is accepted, the sign (flashing lights, glowing taxi sign) would appear.
The person requesting a ride must again raise the arm to confirm the ride. If not confirmed again, the vehicle continues, considering it a mistakenly riased arm. If the taxi is not empty and a person inside doesn't want to share its last mile, the taxi just continues with no sign.
What are your thoughts? Is there any other way how fun old-schoolway of stopping a taxi by raising an arm could be implemented in new world of autonomous taxis?
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