Addison Lee has plans to 'tweak' its technology if new regulations that could hurt ridesharing apps in London are approved

Addison Lee CTO Peter IngramYouTube/MuleSoft VideosAddison Lee CTO Peter Ingram.

Private taxi company Addison Lee says it has already devised solutions in response to a series of strict proposals from London’s transport regulator that, if approved, would clamp down on how private hire companies operate.

Transport for London (TfL), the organisation that regulates things like the London Underground and ridesharing apps like Uber, unveiled a list of potential rules in September.

Some of the proposals are pretty sensible. Drivers would have to speak English and customers may have to be able to book rides in advance, for example.

But TfL is also considering forcing companies like Addison Lee to introduce a mandatory five-minute wait time before a passenger can begin a journey. Another proposal involves a ban on animated cars in apps so that a customer wouldn’t know how far away their ride was.

Addison Lee CTO Peter Ingram said in an interview with Business Insider UK that the company has already developed methods to deal with the proposals outlined by TfL, so that if they actually pass, the company could put them into place.

“We’ve looked at all of the points raised and worked out how our technology could be tweaked,” he said.

Ingram hinted that the most outlandish proposal, the mandatory five-minute wait, would be circumvented by taxi apps and ridesharing companies.

“The five-minute rule is an interesting one, but everyone will find a way around it.” He added: “The five-minute rule is hard to enforce and it’s really an inconvenience to a customer.”

The TfL proposals haven’t been approved yet, and the public is able to give feedback on the possible regulations. However, the process for feedback takes a long time and some people have had trouble filling in the form.

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