Shipping is expensive. Getting to the post office is inconvenient. It is hard to send bulky items. Roadie solves these problems by taking advantage of 250 million passenger vehicles and their billion square feet of unused cargo space. As the first “on the way” shipping network, Roadie connects people who have items to send with drivers already heading in the right direction. By tapping into unused space in passenger vehicles already on the road, Roadie creates a community that gives businesses and consumers a more cost-efficient, faster, and greener shipping option. This network provides a more flexible shipping alternative, especially for large and out-of-the-box items as well as items that need same-day arrival.
Roadie founder Marc Gorlin envisioned an app that would disrupt the $90 billion shipping industry, so he worked with Big Nerd Ranch to make this a reality with iOS and Android apps. First, developers created a fast, geohash-based map searching algorithm that allows users to find Roadie “gigs” nearby. The back-end web team built a JSON API using Rails and Active Model Serializers to accept requests from the iOS and Android clients and created tools to handle driver’s license verification, geolocation and payment gateways. Big Nerd Ranch also built a system that tracks a driver’s location as he or she processes through a gig, giving senders peace of mind and helping them estimate delivery times, while image caching made the app faster and reduced data usage. Third-party integrations like Facebook login and Jumio ID verification were also added to make Roadie easier to setup and use.
Using the app, drivers deliver local and long haul; same day, next day, and even on weekends to places that they are already going. Roadie helps gives senders a low-cost, flexible shipping option, helps the environment by eliminating extra automobile usage, and rewards drivers on trips they’re already taking.