Even in the face of negative headlines about sexual assaults, concerns over data privacy, protests from taxi drivers, raids on its offices and outright bans, Uber continues to grow.
Even in the face of negative headlines about sexual assaults, concerns over data privacy, protests from taxi drivers, raids on its offices and outright bans, Uber continues to grow. Recently, Toronto city council asked staff to develop new rules to accommodate Uber within municipal taxi and limousine bylaws. Since it launched in 2009, Uber has expanded its services dramatically. It’s now available in more than 300 cities in 58 countries. The Wall Street Journal estimates Uber is worth about $50 billion, almost twice its value in 2014. In the Greater Toronto Area alone, Uber says it has 500,000 riders a month and growing. Edmonton is on its way to being the first major Canadian city to regulate ride-sharing. The city is set to vote on a set of proposed regulations, which would see Uber drivers get official city taxi licenses, in November. Kitchener-Waterloo became the first in Ontario to propose a ride-hailing bylaw in August. Under the proposed rules, drivers would be required to have a GPS and a closed-circuit television system installed in their vehicles, and commercial auto insurance policies for a minimum of $2 million. Still, no region has been able strike a balance that leaves all parties satisfied.
As far as Calgary is concerned, the City inches closer to allowing Uber into the high-end cab market with proposed bylaw changes.
As jurisdictions around the world are trying to strike a balance between traditional and new forms of mobility, we are getting a small avant goût of type of conflict and lobbying that shared driverless technology will bring.
Business travel is a $300 billion-a-year industry, and these new services are vying for a bigger portion of the spending pie. Only 12% of Americans have used Uber or Lyft while traveling on business but that may be changing. Uber, with 160,000 active drivers providing ride-share services in more than 150 North American cities, is growing in acceptance.
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On its 5th anniversary, Uber is present in more than 300 cities worldwide.
On its 5th anniversary, Uber is present in more than 300 cities worldwide, has hundreds of thousands of drivers in 57 countries and has a valuation that is pegged between $40 and $50 billion. Uber also announced last week that it is making close to 1 million trips daily in China alone.
In the last few days, Uber’s driverless vehicle has been spotted in Pittsburgh
In the last few days, Uber’s driverless vehicle has been spotted in Pittsburgh. It “is part of Uber’s early research efforts regarding mapping, safety and autonomy systems”. Will Pennsylvania become the next state to introduce regulations allowing the testing of driverless vehicles to accommodate Uber?
Photo: Ethan Lott
Could the Carnegie Mellon University partnership have something to do with this?
A new report from Morgan Stanley has predicted that Uber is on the path to becoming the fifth major automobile company in the United States. Could the Carnegie Mellon University partnership have something to do with this?
Also over the last few weeks, much discussion focused on what was described as a “rift” between Google and Uber.
Also over the last few weeks, much discussion focused on what was described as a “rift” between Google and Uber. The latter’s decision to invest in driverless technology by investing in robotics research at Carnegie Mellon University and the former’s launch of a ride sharing app for its employees may have resulted in a “crack” of what appeared to be a great relationship with Google being an important investor in Uber and Uber looking to driverless technology to power the mobility service of tomorrow.
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Uber is interested in on-call delivery service
In addition to be present as a ride-sharing company in 200 cities, Uber is interested in on-call delivery services. Three pilots in the US: lunch delivery in LA, convenience store pickup & home delivery in Washington and a quick messenger service for Manhattan.
After Uber and UberX, now UberPool: car pooling made easier. According to the Uber site, on average UberX already costs 40% less than a taxi. Imagine reducing that cost by up to another 40% using UberPool (sharing a ride). That means an UberPool ride would cost about 1/3 the price of a taxi.