Struggling taxi cab drivers might have just received the glimmer of hope they need to get back on their feet and actually compete with Uber.
The Verge is reporting that California regulator the Division of Measurement Standards has approved Flywheel, an app that essentially allows customers to request regular taxis the way they would with Uber.
This TaxiOS technology could level the playing field between Uber's ride-hailing service and taxi drivers, helping them to do away with their outdated meter system and essentially function off a smartphone.
The Verge reports that Flywheel works on a single cloud-based smartphone system that makes each taxi cab available for hire just like Uber does with its own ride-hailing app and fleet of cars and drivers out on the road.
"California has finally set a level playing field for taxis in their war against Uber," Flywheel claimed in a statement to the website.
Flywheel added: "A smartphone in every car is the only way to advance the taxi industry, and we now have a mobile platform that can replace every expensive and outdated piece of taxi hardware, while making drivers and fleets more money than ever before."
Kristin Macey, the director of California's Division of Measurement Standards, explained the decision to green-light Flywheel to the Verge as well.
"We determined that the software provides the same level of accuracy as a taximeter and gives consumers a real-time display of current ride price, something they expect in a taxicab," she said. "The Flywheel system also complies with our existing regulations that taximeters must meet, to charge passengers by time or distance depending on the vehicle's speed, never both at the same time."
If Flywheel takes off and is a wild success in California, enabling taxi drivers to take back shares from Uber, it will be interesting to see if other states and countries, whose cabbies are down and out, call on the app in their respective locations in hopes of also leveling the playing field against the growing tech company.