Consumers will be able to pay for their taxi rides in Washington D.C. with a credit card by March 30.
The D.C. Taxicab Commission is requiring the city's 6,500 cabs to install credit card swipers or utilize a digital dispatch service that can use a smartphone to accept riders' credit cards.
This is a scaled-down version of a larger plan that was supposed to require all cabs to have a uniform meter that would take credit cards, have panic buttons for riders and drivers, and display advertising.
However, the city meter contract fell apart. Administrative law judges ordered the city to end its $35 million contract with VeriFone Systems to install the meters because of problems in the procurement process. Part of this is due to the changes in technology--now many companies are offering merchants the ability for their smartphones to accept their customers' credit cards.
Cab owners can buy meters from any company which means the meters will not be the same.