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OlaCabs’ Journey with Scylla

OlaCabs is a mobility platform, providing ride sharing services spanning 250+ cities across India, Australia, New Zealand and the UK. OlaCabs is just one part of the overall Ola brand, which also includes OlaFoods, OlaPayment, and an electric vehicle startup, Ola Electric. Founded in 2010, OlaCabs is redefining mobility. Whether your delivery vehicle or ride sharing platform is a motorized bike, auto-rickshaw, metered taxi or cab, OlaCabs’s platform supports over 2.5 million driver-partners and hundreds of millions of consumers.

The variety of vehicles Ola supports reflects the diversity of localized transportation options.

At Scylla Summit 2021 we had the privilege of hosting Anil Yadav, Engineering Manager at Ola Cabs, who spoke about how Ola Cabs was using Scylla’s NoSQL database to power their applications.

OlaCabs began using Scylla in 2016, when it was trying to solve for the problem of spiky intraday traffic in its ride hailing services. Since then they have developed multiple applications that interface with it, including Machine Learning (ML) for analytics and financial systems.

The team at OlaCabs determined early that they did not require the ACID properties of an RDBMS, and instead needed a high-availability oriented system to meet demanding high throughput, low-latency, bursty traffic.

OlaCabs’ architecture combines Apache Kafka for data streaming from files stored in AWS S3, Apache Spark for machine learning and data pipelining, and Scylla to act as their real-time operational data store.

OlaCabs needs to coordinate data between both the demand of the passengers side of transactions and transportation as well as the supply-side of the drivers, matching up as best as possible which drivers and vehicles would be best suited for each route. It also makes these real-time decisions based on learning from prior history of traffic patterns and even the behavior of their loyal customers and experiences of their drivers.

Anil shared some of the key takeaways from his experiences running Scylla in production.

You can watch the full video on demand from Scylla Summit 2021 to hear more about the context of these tips below. And you can learn more about OlaCabs journey with Scylla by reading their case study of how they grew their business as one of the earliest adopters of Scylla.

If you’d like to learn how you can grow your own business using Scylla as a foundational element of your data architecture, feel free to contact us or join our growing community on Slack.