No More Easy Rider

New York City’s yellow taxis are being outfitted with TV screens that will offer news and weather, sports and travel information.

The new 10-inch touch screens, installed thanks to a partnership between VeriFone Transportation Systems and taxi-meter supplier Taxitronic, will provide video from WABC-TV, ESPN and the Zagat Survey. A 13-minute trip will offer riders some 8 minutes of content and 5 minutes of ads. The WABC sales team is out spreading the word to advertisers about sponsorship opportunities.

“Advertisers really don’t know what to make of it. It can’t be considered your average TV or outdoor buy,” says Michael Mongelluzzo, director of business development and emerging media at WABC-TV. “It’s a new revenue stream for us, offering advertisers demos that are off the charts.”

The equipment is being installed as part of an effort to upgrade all of the city’s 13,000 medallion cabs with customer-oriented payment and information systems. Philly, Chicago and Las Vegas are next.

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