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A new app will let you order taxi through your beer mat

A London tech firm is working with taxi giant Uber to create digital beer mats that will let you order a taxi without leaving your seat. Tamoco are usuing 'proximity technology' that allows messages to be sent to mobiles via beacons. Tapping your phone on your beer mat to open the Uber app. The company now has digital beer mats in more than 100 pubs and bars across London.

"Devices which use near-field communication technology are growing in popularity across bars and shops. It's fun for consumers and interesting for brands as people can interact with things in a natural way, without having to do anything out of the ordinary. "The ability to get instant messages with vouchers is a neat way to engage people and there's obviously an important safety aspect of swaying people away from driving home after a night at the pub."

– Sam Amrani, founder of Tamoco

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Cabbies plan 1000 initial releases

The singing cabbies warming up for rehearsals this morning Credit: ITN/Rags Martel

The group - called 'The London Cabbies' are releasing 1,000 CDs initially and are hoping to raise money for:

The London Taxidrivers' Fund for Underprivileged Children

London Taxi Benevolent Association for War Disabled

The Albany Taxi Charity Fund for Children with Special Needs

Southend Fund for Underprivileged Children

East London Cabbies

London taxi fares to increase

London taxis Credit: Reuters

The Transport for London Board approved a taxi fare increase of 5.3 per cent at a meeting on 2 February 2012. Taxi fares are subject to an annual review and are calculated using a long-established formula based on the costs associated with working as a licensed taxi driver.

The Board also approved a 20 pence increase to the £2.20 flag fall - which is the minimum fare applied to the meter when a passenger gets into the taxi. This increase will apply across all tariff bands and is the first increase to this fee since 2005.

In the last year the price of fuel and the cost of insurance have both increased by 16 per cent. Taxi fares are reviewed annually and calculated by TfL based on a cost index that has been used since 1981. The new taxi fares will come into effect from 14 April 2012.