Apps for booking taxis are nothing new, but the new iOS app for Perth-based Swan Taxis introduces the kind of features that remind you just how awesome smartphones are. The free app lets you track your cab in real time, plus estimate your fare before you even place your booking.
Because taxis all include GPS chips these days, Swan Taxis have managed to incorporate that data into the iPhone app, which means you can actively track the taxi coming to collect you using Google Maps. When your taxi is within 250 metres, you'll receive an audible notification. Alternatively, you can press a button on the app to send out an "electronic whistle" to hail a cab.
When you go to make a booking using the app, the app will also give you an approximate fare calculation, which should help you avoid dodgy cab drivers taking you the scenic route to your destination.
At the moment, the app is iOS only, but Android and WP7 versions are supposedly in the works. The only downside is that the app only works in Perth - we need this kind of functionality for all taxi providers around the country.