SINGAPORE: Passengers are now able to make instant bookings on RydeX, after the private-hire car service rolled out an on-demand feature for its users.
Previously, users had to book a ride at least 10 minutes in advance.
The RydeX service was launched in May by local start-up Ryde Technologies, which started off with carpooling services in 2015.
RydeX's new feature will reduce the average wait time for passengers to under five minutes for each booking, Ryde said, placing the service on par with its competitor and ride-hailing giant Grab.
It will also enable drivers to take home 20 per cent more earnings, as they spend less time idling between jobs, Ryde added.
The feature is available on all services on the Ryde app, including carpool, private-hire and taxis, the company said.
Commenting on the launch, Ryde founder and CEO Terence Zou said that the on-demand feature was launched "earlier than expected" because of "overwhelming market response".
The company, which now has 10,000 private-hire drivers, has been conducting trials for the new RydeX on-demand feature over the last fortnight.
“We (Ryde) have arrived. We picked up from where Uber left off in double quick time. Technology helped us to onboard drivers quicker, match riders faster and ultimately deliver a better experience,” Mr Zou said.
According to Ryde, 80 per cent of the firm's drivers used to work for Uber or Grab, including 33-year-old Kenny Cheah, who was an Uber driver before the company ceased operations in Singapore in March.
Mr Cheah, who participated in RydeX's on-demand trial, told Channel NewsAsia that the new feature has reduced his average idling time on the road to about 15 minutes from 30 minutes.
He added that he now gets an average of seven passengers during the morning shift, compared with four passengers previously.
Ryde takes a 10 per cent commission from its drivers, while Grab, currently the biggest ride-hailing company in Singapore, takes 20 per cent.
Consultant and regular RydeX user Michelle Lim, 27, said that the new on-demand service is a great addition to the Ryde app.
“This service creates greater efficiency and reduces the waiting time taken for commuters. I can now book rides as and when I want.” she said.