Fixed From 'Shark Tank' Is Available Now, If You Drive In Certain Cities
Traffic tickets are basically the bane of all of our existence. Well, if you drive that is. However, what if I told you there was a way to cough up just a fraction of their cost to make them essentially disappear? Just watch Friday night's upcoming episode of Shark Tank , and you'll definitely want to know where you can get the featured app Fixed.
The name "Fixed" alone probably doesn't reveal much about the company to you. The word "fixed" has a lot of different connotations, after all. But the confusion of the name aside, Fixed does something I never knew could be so easy, at least by the looks of it.
Most importantly, will the Sharks be tempted to buy into this idea? If the app does what it says it does, perhaps. However, the app hasn't been without some controversy — which I'll get into later — so that definitely has the potential to turn the Sharks off to the idea of investing in the product. Situations like those can sometimes rub customers the wrong way, and the less opportunity to make money means the less likely the Sharks are to invest in the company.
But all in all, Fixed is an interesting concept that should grab the attention of the Sharks from the get-go. At least the product has a chance. So why don't you cut it a little slack as well and see what Fixed is all about below.
It Fights Your Traffic Tickets For You
If you want to stick it to the man, Fixed will help you do it, at least where traffic tickets are concerned. This app will help you contest your traffic tickets so you hopefully don't have to pay them. First, you take a photo of your traffic ticket and answer a couple of questions about your driving history. An agent will review your submission and then connect you with an attorney, who will then help fight your traffic ticket so you don't have to go to court yourself to do so. This'll help free up your time so you can do even more driving!
You Can Use It Now
Fixed is available to use through a browser or to download on your mobile device for free through the App Store or Google Play. The app is currently only available in several cities in California, but there are plenty more places across the country on the horizon. It costs zero dollars to submit a ticket, but the app will find you attorneys with rates starting at $150, so it'll set you back at least that amount if you decide to have one of these legal eagles contest your traffic ticket for you. But hopefully that'll be less than what you would have paid for a traffic ticket, or else there'd really be no point for this app to exist.
The Founder Is A Self-Proclaimed Ticket Fighter
Fixed founder David Hegarty hates traffic tickets as much as you do. The Dublin, Ireland native had always contested traffic tickets, but one time he let them pile up to the point where he had four to pay in his current home city of San Francisco. Hegarty decided to pay them, only to discover two more left on his car that same day. As Hegarty vented about the city's affinity for ticketing to a friend, he suggested fighting back by making an app to help people contest traffic tickets. Nowadays, Hegarty, who has worked at Microsoft and start-ups in the past, according to his LinkedIn profile, sees helping people contest traffic tickets as the first step in helping them fight all sorts of legal issues in the future.
It Already Has Some Big Backers
Fixed has already scored investments from some pretty well-known VC firms, such as Y Combinator, Structure Capital, and Merus Capital, where Hegarty once served as entrepreneur-in-residence. Fixed has also been backed by rapper Nas. Hopefully, there's room in there for a Shark to invest, because we all know how much they don't like to share.
It Has Some Competition
I had never before heard of an app that does what Fixed claims to do, so I thought it was pretty ingenious. However, it's such a good idea that other companies have decided to try their hand at helping people contest traffic tickets, too. BloombergBusiness wrote a whole article about several apps that help users obtain more affordable legal counsel, which features GetDismissed, LegalTap, and WinIt, in addition to Fixed. Like any app, all of these have their pros and cons, so just like interviewing lawyers the old-fashioned way, you've got to see which one works best for you.
Its Launch Hasn't Been So Smooth
There's no doubt that Fixed has been getting a lot of buzz since the company was founded in 2013. However, Fixed has also caught the attention of municipal authorities, who don't seem to have all taken too kindly to it. Fixed said that it had been blocked from ticketing websites in San Francisco, Oakland, and Los Angeles, three of its top cities, in October 2015. The SFMTA and Xerox, which handles the backend of the cities' ticketing operations, said Fixed had not been blocked but that Xerox had put new security measures in place. When it launched, the app allowed users to take photos of their parking ticket using their cell phone's camera. Fixed would then check it against a variety of common errors before drafting a customized letter to the city for the user.
Of course, Hegarty still made his voice heard regarding the alleged incident in a post on Medium calling for more accountability from the SFMTA and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee. Knowing what I know now about the company and its founder, I wouldn't have expected anything less.
Images: Adam Rose/ABC (2); Giphy (5)