The app uses your phone's GPS to pick up your current address, but you can also specify an address by tapping on the map, or entering a search term. Once an address has been specified you can tap the "Book Now" or "Book Later" buttons. After a short pause, while the app queries the backend service and make a booking on your behalf, you'll see a confirmation screen that tells you your order has been accepted and gives an estimated time of arrival.
Of course the utility of a brokerage service like Click A Taxi in entirely dependent on how good its coverage is. The app (and service) are currently available in the UK, Ireland, Sweden, Norway, and Denmark; with plans in place to expand this to other markets over the rest of 2012 and into 2013.
In the supported countries Click A Taxi is aiming for universal coverage, not just major metropolitan areas. In our testing, UK coverage was decent, but not quite universal. The majority of larger towns and cities do seem to be covered, but, as you might expect, it is the smaller towns and rural areas that miss out. Given that Click A Taxi are setting up agreements with trusted firms on an area by area basis, that's not unexpected, and I would expect coverage to to improve over time.
There are currently a number of teething problems with the app. For example, it doesn't always pick up on an address from the map successfully, especially in rural areas, or for places that do not have a house number. In some areas there may also be coverage issues, as noted above. However, when everything goes smoothly, it's a great experience, and very much more convenient than finding a taxi company yourself and placing a phone call to make booking.
Click A Taxi can be downloaded from the Windows Phone Marketplace for free. The app is currently only available in the UK, Ireland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark.
Why Click A Taxi is on Windows Phone
In a blog post talking about the latest version of the app Click A Taxi's Coo-Founder explains why the company chose to develop on Windows Phone:
A lot of people ask me why we chose to develop an app for Windows Phone ahead of one for Blackberry. I wouldn't like to say that we've ruled Blackberry out. But when we considered which client we would develop for next, we looked both at the current state of the market and what people were demanding. Blackberry has been a great platform, and it's certainly still dominant in some circles, but people were asking us for a Windows Phone app. Additionally, the first versions of the Windows Phone have not required major changes to our interface, allowing us to get the app out in the timely manner that the market expects.
We believe that the Windows Phone interface represents the first truly revolutionary smartphone interface since iOS. It looks completely different from anything we've seen before; the active tiles resemble the science fiction of just a few years ago! Working with great hardware producers like Nokia means that it's only a matter of time before an optimal Windows Phone is produced. So at the end of the day the chance to ride the Windows Phone wave was to good to turn down.