Info.: Co-Founder and CTO at Ridely.
Previously: He was a Software Development Engineer at Jabong.
I was really surprised to see a 15 line code doing wonders! i dreamed of doing this for my life and took up Computer Science in 11th class and pursued my dream from then on. – Says Rachit.
He is very much interested in Open Source Contribution and did his bit for the open source community by completing his Google Summer of Code with LibreOffice in 2014.
Download Ridely App:
Q1. What is Ridely ? Why did you choose the word Ridely ?
Ridely is a real-time carpool and dynamic ride sharing platform. Ridely lets you share cars (carpool) and two wheelers with other people. It also helps you find verified people around you who travel to same locations. You can connect with those users and share an auto/cab or a car and save money on your daily commute alongwith travelling in comfort.
Why we chose the word Ridely :
For the word Ridely, we wanted to build a carpooling app that promoted travelling together, so we decided to name it “TraTo” TRAvel TOgether but, unfortunately, we could not get the domain in the extension we wanted like .in or .com or .co. As it was going to be a ride-sharing platform we searched for some domains available with “Ride” in them and finally we came up with RIDELY. The word in hinglish sounds like RIDE taken (राइड ली) and since using “-ly” in names is the trend these days, so we zeroed in on Ridely.
Q2. What was your idea behind Ridely ?
The idea behind Ridely is to promote carpooling as a viable option for daily commute. In a country like India, there are a lot of barriers which prevent people from carpooling. We want to make carpooling a “Cool” thing in India.
While working with Jabong, me and my Co-Founders (Varun Verma and Ankur Gaur) used to carpool on our way home. We realized that travelling with people who work in your office or live near your home is much easier and comfortable than travelling with strangers. That was when we came up with the idea of Ridely and decided to give it a full-time shot.
Q3. Though you’ve provided multi tier verification of your customers to ensure safety, wouldn’t this cause your customer to rather not use because of completing too many formalities? Have you thought of any other way of safety, as customers can even provide fake IDs ?
I agree that the on-boarding process for a user is a bit tedious, but we want all our users to be absolutely comfortable when they carpool using Ridely.
We have provided multiple levels of verification and we award badges to users based on the level upto which they have verified their profiles. Email and phone number verifications are must to use the app. Over that, the verification steps like Government ID and official Email ID verification are optional. But, since everyone wants to travel with verified users and feel safe, they themselves have to go through the formalities 🙂
We do a manual verification of the official IDs. But we are focussing more on people who work with reputed companies or corporates.
Q4. How would you solve the problem of one of the riders delaying the journey by coming late, because the other customers might get late because of the first ?
Ridely has a very interactive chat feature using which the users can share updates to other users. We are soon coming up with group chats for rides in which, all the people involved in a ride will be able to broadcast updates to each other.
Also, we have a 3-way review system in which the ride offerer rates the ride takers, ride takers review the offerers and ride takers review other ride takers. If anyone is a repeating defaulter, his/her rating would naturally decline and that would in turn affect his/her visibility on the platform.
Q5. List some biggest challenges that carpooling business face in market and what were your moves on them.
Some of the Major challenges faced in carpooling are:
1. People are unaware of other people working in their offices or studying in their colleges who live near their home. Ridely has a unique people discovery feature which shows you other people who have performed a similar search on our platform. You can simple connect with those users, chat with them and plan your travel together.
2. Trust is a major issue. People are not so comfortable with travelling with strangers in their cars. Ridely solves this by showing carpools and users who work in the same office or study in the same institution. We believe users are comfortable in travelling with people who work in the same building.
Some of the Minor challenges faced in carpooling are:
1. Money is a hassle. Asking money from strangers can be awkward. Ridely does all the calculation for the money based on the distance you travelled during the carpool. And very soon, we are coming with a wallet in the app which will get rid of all the hassles and awkwardness revolving around money.
2. People are often disappointed when they don’t find any one to carpool with when they need it. Ridely is constantly on the look for carpools or other people who might match your search. The moment a match is found, we notify you. Also, with our user discovery feature, we give the users an option to book a cab and share the cost.
Q6. How is your startup different from other startups of carpooling like Ola share etc ?
Our USP is the user discovery feature that allows users to find others looking for rides to similar destinations, connect, chat, and plan their travel together.
With a refined UX and an advanced route matching algorithm, we are providing some features like mid-way pickups along the route, map based interface to locate rides and people easily.
Our multi level verification keeps the trust in the system in check. User can verify with Official email, Government Id etc. which earns them a badge. Other users can check these badges before travelling together.
Q7. Was Ridely Funded recently ?
If yes, then where you gonna use that amount ?
If no, any plans for funding ? Were you approached by anyone for acquisition ?
We started Ridely in November 2015 with our savings as the initial funds. We are currently looking to raise our seed fund. We were approached by 3 companies for acquisition of tech, product and team.
Q8. Can you explain in detail about your review system of rides and how do you act up on the reviews ?
Ridely has a 3-way review system in which every user can provide a rating and optionally a review to other users with whom they have traveled. We show the average ratings for the users on the search results screen. The users can themselves analyze the ratings and take a call about who to travel with. They can see the ratings, reviews and verification level of the user before requesting to travel together.
Q9. What is the tech stack you are using at Ridely ?
We are using Python/Django and Golang for our backend, with PostgreSQL and Redis as storage. We are using Nginx as the load balancer. We have a native Android App. We will soon be launching the web app.
Q10. Could you describe your journey in the world of coding, the things you learned in college that helped you out, and those learnings which are really helping you out right now in setting up the tech of a venture ? Any advice to a beginner on how to take up programming and software development on some of latest technologies ?