Line Taxi leapfrogs Uber again, now in over 90 cities across Japan -- Feb 25
Line Taxi premiered in January in Japan, giving users of the popular messaging app an easy way to book a cab. Like Uber's Japanese debut, it was limited initially to Tokyo.

Uber may have reached beyond Tokyo first when it started ride-sharing in Fukuoka, but Line Taxi is firing back with a major expansion of its own. From today, it will be available in over 90 additional cities across Japan.

The cities cover 20 prefectures as well as Osaka and Tokyo. Notable inclusions are Yokohama, Sendai, and Sapporo, while well-known prefectures like Hiroshima, Fukuoka, and Saitama now have cabbies connected to Line Taxi patrolling the streets.

The push to claim more territory comes as Line Taxi appears to be seeing positive traction in Tokyo. The company says 34 percent of first-time users come back for a second time. 15 percent use it three times or more. Concrete user numbers were not released.

This news highlights why Line's partnership with Nihon Kotsu and its 23,000 taxis - the nation's largest group - is so critical. Line can literally throw manpower at this problem, something Uber's understaffed fleet cannot. That said, Line Taxi's national success is still far from certain.

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