Latest Uber news: Uber's latest announcements

Share

The taxi-hailing app is considered both brilliant and controversial, depending on who you ask. Here we’ve documented the company’s journey to a $70 billion valuation.

Disclaimer: it’s been a bit of a bumpy one…

©Uber

Uber chooses Expedia boss Dara Khosrowshahi as new CEO

29/08/2017

The Uber board has made its pick for a new CEO, choosing the current Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi for the role. And while Khosrowshahi is yet to confirm that he has accepted the role, it is widely expected to happen this week.

Khosrowshahi will replace founder Travis Kalanick after he started an undefined leave of absence after a list of controversies, including a sexual harassment scandal.

With names like HP Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki and General Electric CEO Jeffrey Immelt being thrown around, the decision to appoint the Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi may have come as a bit of a surprise to some.

FTC orders Uber privacy audit every two years for two decades

August 16, 2017

America’s Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has ruled Uber must face a privacy audit every two years for the next 20 years, partly as a response to the ride-sharing company’s “God View” program, but also due to a 2014 data breach.

God View was an internal program that let employees monitor the locations of customers who had used the app to request a car. Later, the company’s former forensic investigator claimed that Uber staff used the app to spy on politicians, celebrities, friends, and spouses. There was even talk from senior employees at Uber that the company tracked reporters.

The business claimed that access to the tool was limited and since those revelations has introduced a chief security officer along with a sizeable team of employees “dedicated to protecting user information”.

The FTC ruling states that Uber will have to implement a privacy programme to address the complaints.

Each audit will have to explain the privacy controls that Uber implemented, as well as detail how these are appropriate to the size and complexity of the company. They will also require that the privacy controls “are operating with sufficient effectiveness to provide reasonable assurance to protect the privacy of personal information”.

Security researcher Lee Munson said that with GDPR coming into effect next May, Uber could benefit from the ruling.

“While such an agreement with the FTC may sound incredibly arduous, Uber will probably benefit from a necessary change in approach, which will stand it in good stead for the incoming GDPR,” he said.

Uber introduces in-app tipping ahead of tribunal appeal

August 14, 2017

Uber has announced a raft of new features for the ride-sharing service in the UK that it promises will provide drivers with “more control” and to “make the most of their time” on the app – but it has been dismissed by the lead claimant from last year’s tribunal for improved working conditions as a ‘cynical’ move ahead of Uber’s upcoming appeal in the courts.

The update includes in-app tipping and revisions to the cancellation policy, and it has also promised fairer ratings for drivers.

The company claims that the changes were prompted by a 12-month consultation with its drivers. In-app tipping will launch across the UK tomorrow and will also apply to UberEATS, Uber’s equivalent to gig-economy takeout delivery service Deliveroo.

Uber’s rating system – which has courted controversy for unfairly punishing drivers – has been tweaked so that issues that are not the fault of the driver, such as problems with the app, will no longer affect ratings.

Uber will also introduce paid waiting time for drivers – for every two minutes that the driver waits for a passenger, the passenger will pay 20p. This will come into effect on 22 August.

Passengers will now pay a cancellation fee if they cancel their trip within two minutes of having their driver confirmed rather than the previous five minutes.

Uber is also introducing a ‘no thanks’ button so drivers can immediately turn down a trip rather than having to wait for the request to time out, which is currently between 10 and 20 seconds. If trips are declined three times in a row, the app will mark them as unavailable. And UberXL or Exec drivers can now opt out of seeing UberX trips altogether.

The destination feature, which pairs drivers with passengers heading in the same direction drivers want to go, will be available six times a day rather than twice a day, and now includes an ‘arrival time’ feature so drivers can set the time they need to get to their destination.

But the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) has said that the new features are a ‘cynical’ ploy ahead of an upcoming appeal from Uber against a ruling that it will have to grant its drivers employment status.

The IWGB, with the support of the GMB general union last year, won a major tribunal ruling that would see Uber drivers treated as employed workers.

James Farrar, who chairs the United Private Hire Drivers section of the IWGB, said: “This is a cynical PR move ahead of Uber’s appeal next month against last year’s employment tribunal ruling in favour of drivers.

“Despite its claims, Uber remains completely deaf to the most serious issue facing drivers – excessively long hours earning on average between £5 and £6 per hour. If Uber was more concerned about driver welfare than it is with propping up its own dreadful reputation, it would have abided by the tribunal’s decision and guaranteed drivers a minimum wage and holiday pay.

“Instead, we are talking about ‘innovations’ such as a ‘fairer’ rating system and a ‘no thanks’ button. We say, thanks Uber but ‘no thanks’.”

Uber founder Travis Kalanick resigns

June 21, 2017

After months of turmoil, Travis Kalanick has resigned after reported pressure from Uber’s shareholders. 

This news comes after a review of the firm’s practices and a sting of scandals including sexual harassment claims.

And most recently, Kalanick said he was taking an indefinite leave of absence following his mother’s death.

According to The New York Times, five major investors demanded Kalanick’s resignation with immediate effect.

“I love Uber more than anything in the world,” Kalanick reportedly said “And at this difficult moment in my personal life I have accepted the investors request to step aside so that Uber can go back to building rather than be distracted with another fight.”

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick to take a leave of absence

15 June 2017

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has taken an indefinite leave of absence as the company contends with increased internal turmoil and staff losses. It is unclear who will lead the ride-hailing company at this stage. Kalanick is also dealing with personal issues following the sudden death of his mother in a boating accident which has left his father hospitalised.

Listen: Uber CEO Travis Kalanick takes leave of absence amidst internal turmoil

The under-fire CEO has been under increasing pressure to step away from the company amidst a series of crises, mostly stemming from accusations of pervasive sexual harassment and other corporate misbehaviour since former engineer Susan Fowler published a damning blog post back in February.

Since then one quarter of Uber’s traditional C-suite jobs have been vacated and many of Kalanick’s closest advisors — internally called the ‘A-Team’ — have left the company.

The company has announced it will implement a set of sweeping changes to the organisation following the recommendations of an investigation by the former US attorney general Eric H. Holder Jr. and his law firm, Covington & Burling.

However, at the all-hands meeting intended to run through these 13 recommendations, there was yet another example of the pervasive sexism at the company.

It is reported that during the meeting, board member Arianna Huffington talked about how having one female director typically leads to more female directors. Fellow board member and founding partner at the private equity firm TPG, David Bonderman apparently silenced the room by saying that adding more women to the board would result in “more talking.” He quickly apologised and resigned from his position on the board.

Uber reportedly tracked Lyft drivers using a secret programme called ‘Hell’

13 April 2017

Using a software programme called ‘Hell’, Uber has been secretly tracking Lyft drivers, The Information reports.

Uber used ‘Hell’ to create fake Lyft accounts which meant it could monitor how many drivers were available for new rides and what their location was.

This comes a few months after Uber staff were caught spying on celebrities and former partners using a tool called ‘God’s View’, now called Heaven. Read more on this below.

Italy bans Uber for unfair competition

10 April 2017

Uber has been ordered to stop all activities across the entirety of Italy, Reuters reports.

The ban comes after courts ruled that Uber represents unfair competition for taxi drivers, claiming that Uber doesn’t respect transportation laws.

Uber has been granted 10 days to stop all its activities including any advertising and marketing campaigns. After that, the company must pay €10,000 (£8,533) per day if it continues to operate.

Uber president Jeff Jones steps down 

20 March 2016

After joining the company less than six months ago, Uber president Jeff Jones is stepping down, in a move that was “completely unexpected” by colleagues.

The BBC reports that Jones grew frustrated that a new COO was being appointed and he was not being considered for the position. However, according to Recode, Jones’s departure is due to Uber’s ongoing controversies surrounding sexism and sexual harassment.

In a statement on Sunday Uber said: “We want to thank Jeff for his six months at the company and wish him all the best.”

Read more here.

Uber shuts down UberTAXI in London

13 March 2017

Uber announced last week that it’s shutting down its UberTAXI service in London, as of the 31 March 2017. 

Launched in 2014, UberTAXI lets Uber customers hail black cabs through its mobile app, rather than a normal Uber car.

“Since we first launched UberTAXI, hundreds of black cab drivers have taken tens of thousands of trips through the Uber app. However, in recent months, those numbers have tailed off,” said Uber in a blog post published Friday afternoon.

“At Uber we always want our riders to be able to get a car whenever they want and wherever they are – no matter which option on our app they choose. That hasn’t been the case recently with UberTAXI, which is why we will be ending this option on 31 March,” it added.

In the statement, Uber said that it would be focusing on car-sharing options and even fully electric cars.

Uber CEO apologises after being caught on video arguing with driver about fares

1 March 2017

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has apologised after a video obtained by Bloomberg showed him in a heated exchange with Uber driver Fawzi Kamel.

Kamel expressed his distress at the way Uber treats its drivers, even telling the CEO: “I’m bankrupt because of you”.

“You’re raising the standards, and you’re dropping the prices,” said Kamel. “People are not trusting you anymore. I lost $97,000 because of you. I’m bankrupt because of you.” Kamel then added: “You keep changing every day.”

In response, Kalanick said: “Some people don’t like to take responsibility for their own shit. They blame everything in their life on somebody else. Good luck!” Then he proceeded to slam the car door.

Google’s self-driving firm Waymo is suing Uber

24 February 2017

Waymo is taking legal action against Otto, a self-driving vehicle company bought by Uber last year for $700m. Uber is being sued for stealing trade secrets and technology, according to the BBC.

The lawsuit alleges that Anthony Levandowski, a former Waymo employee, took information from Waymo by ‘downloading 14,000 highly confidential and proprietary design files’ before moving on to cofound Otto.

“Our parent company Alphabet has long worked with Uber in many areas, and we didn’t make this decision lightly,” said Waymo in a blog post.

Uber CEO steps down from Trump’s advisory council

3 February 2017

Following heavy criticism of Uber’s practices during recent anti-Trump protests, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has stepped down from Donald Trump’s economic advisory council.

Kalanick said that his participation was ‘misinterpreted’ as an endorsement of Trump’s agenda.

“Earlier today I spoke briefly with the president about the immigration executive order and its issues for our community.

“I also let him know that I would not be able to participate on his economic council. Joining the group was not meant to be an endorsement of the president or his agenda but unfortunately it has been misinterpreted to be exactly that,” said Kalanick in an email to Uber employees obtained by the Guardian.

#DeleteUber leads to more than 200,000 people to delete their Uber accounts

2 February 2017

After the protests against Trump’s executive order banning refugees and nationals of seven Muslim countries last week, Uber was accused of trying to profit from the protest.

This has led to over 200,000 people deleting their Uber accounts following the #DeleteUber boycott, according to a report from The New York Times.

Uber’s self-driving cars pick up passengers in San Francisco

14 December 2016

Uber’s self-driving cars will pick up passengers in the San Francisco area today. This expansion of Uber’s Pittsburg trial earlier this year involves each enabled Volvo SUV housing a safety driver and an Uber test engineer to take start manually driving the car when needed and monitor the smart technology.

All passengers need to do is request an uberX using the standard consumer-facing mobile app.

Uber employees reportedly caught spying on celebrities and former partners

13 December 2016

According to reports, Uber employees have been spying on celebrities and former partners. Uber staff used its ‘God’s View’ feature to monitor the movements of “high-profile politicians, celebrities and even personal acquaintances of Uber employees, including ex-boyfriends/girlfriends, and ex-spouses”, wrote Samuel Ward Spangenberg’s, Uber’s former forensic investigator. Earlier this year Spangenberg was fired from Uber over age discrimination.

Uber told Reveal in a statement: “we have hundreds of security and privacy experts working around the clock to protect our data. This includes enforcing to authorised employees solely for purposes of their job responsibilities, and all potential violations are quickly and thoroughly investigated.” Uber also said that its “God View” tool no longer existed, instead opting for an internal tool called “Heaven View”.

Uber’s self-driving truck Otto makes its first delivery

26 October 2016

Uber has joined forces with AB InBev to transport 50,000 bottles of Budweiser, in what is thought to be the world’s first self-driving commercial delivery. 

The truck transported the beer more than 120 miles with police vehicles in tow, with reports suggesting the truck driver was relaxing in the back sleeping cab. 

Uber starts mapping UK city streets

16 September 2016

From today Uber will be collecting images of UK city streets, starting with London. According to the BBC, these images will be used to determine the best pick-up and drop-off points around the city with plans to expand mapping activities to Leeds, Manchester and Birmingham. This image data will most likely aid Uber’s driverless cars ambitions.

Uber to launches self-driving car pickups in Pittsburgh

14 September 2016

During an interview with Bloomberg last month, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick revealed that it will deploy around 100 ‘driverless cars’ in Pittsburgh. 

Each vehicle will be fitted with self-driving capabilities and be staffed by one engineer, designed to take control of the car if needed and a co-pilot to note its progress, with the addition of a computer to record trips and map their data.

This move comes after Uber acquired Otto, a startup aiming to deliver autonomy to lorries and trucks. Numerous reports have suggested Uber may use these capabilities in its own driverless car plan, or potentially its own driverless lorry business.

Uber takes legal action over TfL’s plan to force drivers to take written English test

18 August 2016

Uber is taking legal action against London’s transport authority TFL over its plans to force Uber drivers to pass a written exam in English. 

The legal battle centres on TFL’s new rules for private hire drivers that require people from non-English speaking countries to take (and pass) a mandatory written English test costing £200.

In addition to this, Uber has taken issue with TfL’s rule that drivers must be covered by commercial insurance during out-of-work hours.

Uber celebrates four years of service in London 

29 June 2016

Uber has been operating in London since 2012 when it launched 90 cars in the capital. In the same year Uber rolled out services to Toronto and Sydney with a soft launch in Singapore taking place in early 2013. 

Uber introduces business profiles 

19 November 2015

Uber has introduced a new feature which allows all of its users to switch between their personal and business profiles, so that business trips are charged straight back to the company.

This will cut down on the need to keep receipts and file expense forms, but could also lead to some red faces if users forget to switch between accounts. 

Read more here.

Uber chief jumps ship 

The man in charge of Uber’s international expansion is leaving the taxi-app company, following regulatory challenges in Europe.

Neil Wass, the senior vice president for Europe, Middle East and Africa and Asia-Pacific will leave Uber at the end of the year, according to the Financial Times.

Uber reportedly bids $3bn for Nokia’s Here mapping business

8 May 2015

Taxi-app Uber has bid for Nokia’s Here mapping business in a bid to reduce its dependence on Google, reports suggest. 

Read more here.  

Uber and Lyft drivers could soon be subject to stricter background checks

27 April 2015

A US court is mulling over a bill that would subject Massachusetts-based drivers for companies like Uber and Lyft to criminal background checks. 

That safety provision is just one outlined in a bill that is designed to regulate ride-sharing companies without stifling them.

Read more here. 

Uber under attack for alleged discrimination against blind passengers

21 April 2015

A court case that alleges Uber discriminates against blind passengers will be allowed to proceed despite an attempt by Uber to have it thrown out, a California judge ruled. 

The lawsuit, which concerns several alleged incidents in which Uber drivers refused service to blind passengers with service animals, represents another battle over whether Uber should be governed by the sale rules that cover taxis, buses and other public transportation companies.

Read more here. 

Uber in “sharing economy” standoff with UK government

20 March 2015 

Uber is in a standoff with the government over whether or not it is part of the sharing economy in the UK, Techworld can reveal. 

The San Francisco-headquartered company has expressed an interest in joining the newly-created, government-backed Sharing Economy UK (SEUK) trade body but there are a number of obstacles that need to be overcome beforehand.

Read more here.

Uber back in court after Californian taxi firms accuse it of false advertising

19 March 2015

Taxi companies in California have sued Uber Technologies in a federal court, charging the ride-hailing smartphone app company with misleading advertising regarding the safety of its rides.

Uber has made false and misleading advertisements regarding the safety of rides on its UberX platform, and criticised the safety of taxi rides offered by the taxi companies, the 19 firms said in a lawsuit filed Wednesday in the US District Court for the Northern District of California, San Francisco division.

Read more here. 

Uber and Lyft business model faces challenge over driver status

11 March 2015

The two companies want to classify their drivers as contractors rather than employees, which means they are not subject to employment protection law.

In separate cases, two federal judges said the status of the companies’ drivers will need to be decided by juries. If the drivers are considered employees, they could be entitled to minimum wages and any tips that customers pay, as well as other benefits. In that sense, the case is seen as a legal test that could affect other companies in the “sharing economy.”

Read more here. 

Uber seeks direction with deCarta mapping purchase

4 March 2015

Uber has bought mapping and location company deCarta in a bid to both improve its driver performance and develop new services.

California-based DeCarta  holds a variety of data pertaining to mapping, local search and turn-by-turn navigation. Its global location based services were used by Google Maps (2005-2008) and are used today by GM OnStar, Ford Sync, Samsung, Inrix, Blackberry and over 25 mobile operators worldwide.

Read more here

Uber founders make it into Forbes billionaire list

3 March 2015

Uber founders Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp are new arrivals in the Forbes annual ranking of the world’s billionaires, with a net worth each of $5.3bn. Ryan Graves, who five years ago reputedly replied “hire me :)” to a tweet about a job with an unknown startup, is now worth $1.4bn. Nice money if you can get it, but old new technology money dominates the rankings….

Read more here

Personal data on 50,000 Uber drivers exposed in breach

2 March 2015

The names and license plate numbers of about 50,000 Uber drivers were compromised in a security breach last year, the company revealed Friday.

Read more here

Uber hopes to attract customers worldwide through Starwood Hotels partnership

25 February 2015

Uber is set to start rewarding its customers each time they stay in a particular hotel. 

The ride-hailing service is teaming up with Starwood Hotels & Resorts to boost the use of its app among the well-traveled crowd. Through the partnership, members of Starwood’s guest loyalty program can link their accounts with Uber accounts and earn Starwood credits whenever they take an Uber ride. They’ll earn more credits if they take the ride while staying in one of the hotel company’s 1,200 properties in 100 countries.

Read more here. 

Uber raises an extra $1bn to meet investor demand

20 February 2015

Uber released more stocks in a bid to raise an extra $1 billion and meet investor demand. 

The latest expansion brings the total amount of money Uber raised from the funding round to $2.8 billion. The extra cash injection doesn’t increase Uber’s valuation, which is still $40 billion.

Read more here. 

Buying Uber might give Google a ride into the future

3 February 2015

Google has already invested at least $258 million into Uber but there are a few reasons why a complete buyout makes perfect sense.

The companies are heading in some of the same directions. Both Uber and Google are now working on driverless car technology and transportation and delivery services. Uber announced the creation of the “Uber Advanced Technologies Centre” in Pittsburgh through a partnership with Carnegie Mellon University, which will focus on long-term technology in the areas of mapping, vehicle safety and “autonomy technology.”

Were Google to acquire Uber, it might head off a possible confrontation between the companies as both push deeper into developing similar services.

Read more here.  

Uber backs driverless car research with new technology centre

3 February 2015

Uber will open a technology centre near the Carnegie Mellon University to help put driverless cars on the road.

The research team, based near the Carnegie Mellon campus in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, will focus on mapping, car safety technology and driverless robotics.

Read more here. 

Uber passenger who alleged Delhi rape sues in US

29 January 2015

A passenger who says she was raped and sexually assaulted by an Uber driver in New Delhi sues Uber in a US court, alleging that the company was negligent and that its commitment to passenger safety comes second to profits.

Read more here.  

Uber woos European cities with the promise of 50,000 new jobs in 2015

19 Janurary 2015

Uber promises 50,000 new jobs in Europe in 2015 alone, in an bid to get more cities on the continent to approve its ride-hailing service.

Read more here.  

Can Uber still be classed as a startup?

19 January 2015

Can Uber still be classed as a startup if CEO Travis Kalanick successfully creates 50,000 jobs across Europe this year? The company believes it can, but others aren’t so sure. 

Many of the world’s largest technology companies, including Google and Facebook, still consider themselves to be startups in one sense or another. Indeed, they see being a startup as more of a state of mentality as opposed to how old the company is, how large its revenues are or how many staff it employs. 

When asked if Uber is still a startup, a spokesperson for the company said: “I have not heard otherwise.”

Read more here. 

Uber gives Boston the gift of data

13 January 2015 

Boston city officials will be the first to dip their fingers into Uber’s pot of data, under new plans laid out by the mobile car-summoning service.

The effort, Uber says, is geared toward city planning in areas that include managing urban growth as well as improving traffic flows and congestion. By seeing how residents travel across a city, for instance, municipalities might have better information for creating or reducing parking zones, Uber says. Uber’s data would add to the trip records from traditional taxi and other car service providers that local regulators already receive.

Read more here. 

Uber controversies and conflicts around the world mapped by data analysis firm Silk

8 January 2015

Troublesome Uber is encountering opposition from courts and taxi drivers in nearly every city it operates in. The extent of the controversies has made it difficult for some people to keep up, but data analysts at Silk have now created a number of visualisations depicting each of Uber’s regulatory conflicts around the world.

Read more here

Uber expands Momentum Rewards programme to UK drivers

7 January 2015

Uber has expanded its driver perks programme from the US to the UK as part of an effort to sign up more taxi drivers to its service.

Read more here. 

Uber looks to hire hundreds of people globally but just 13 in UK

6 January 2015

Uber is expanding aggressively worldwide but it is clearly chasing some markets more than others. Data released at the end of last year by data analysis firm Silk suggests that Uber is particularly keen on growing its operations in Asia.

Uber wants to recruit 144 non-drivers in Asia, 81 in Europe, 29 in South America, 28 in Oceania, 17 in Africa and six in the Middle East, according to data sent to Techworld at the end of December.

In the UK, Uber is recruiting for 13 positions, with seven of those falling under operations, two under local marketing and support and two under public policy and communication. There are no engineering positions being advertised in the UK, despite the well-established engineering communities around clusters like London’s Silicon Roundabout and Cambridge.

Read more here.  

Uber makes U-turn after upping fares near Sydney hostage crisis

15 December 2014

Uber is offering the public free journeys after it was criticised for upping the price of journeys around the area where hostages are being held in Sydney, Australia.

Uber increased fares by four times due to high demand in Sydney’s central business district (CBD) following a hostage crisis in a cafe.

Read more here.  

More trouble brewing for Uber in Brussels

15 December 2014

©iStock/jorisvo

There is more trouble brewing for ride-hailing service Uber in Brussels where the minister for mobility announced he will file a complaint with the police to take the company’s site offline in Belgium.

Read more here. 

Uber hit with consumer protection lawsuits in San Francisco and LA

10 December 2014

Uber has been hit with a lawsuit by the district attorneys for Los Angeles and San Francisco that accuses it of misleading consumers over its background checks on drivers and could lead to millions of dollars in fines.

Read more here.  

‘Arrogant’ Uber needs to mature before going public, says VC

9 December 2014

Uber will need to change its tactics if it is going to become a public company, a US venture capitalist warned. 

Fred Wilson, managing partner at New York-headquartered Union Square Ventures, said Uber needs to ditch its “arrogant” and “ruthless” approach if it wants to go public and realise its $40 billion valuation.

Describing Uber’s business model at the Le Web conference in Paris, the seasoned investor said: “Its ruthless execution combined with a swagger and an arrogance that is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. The ability to execute comes from that arrogance and swagger.

“But to become a public company they need to figure out how to become more mature.”

Read more here. 

Uber founder Travis Kalanick confirms billion dollar funding round

3 December 2014

©Techcrunch

Uber confirmed today that it has successfully raised over a billion dollars (£600 million) in its latest funding round.

The announcement, revealed in a blog post by company founder Travis Kalanick, means that Uber could be valued at up to $40 billion (£25 billion), outstripping the likes of Twitter which has a market cap of $25 billion.

Read more here.  

Silicon Valley startups discover power of political lobbying

3 December 2014

They might be masters of innovation in some areas, but startups like Airbnb, Uber, Sidecar and Fitbit are finding that when it comes to Washington DC, the old ways are the best.

In the last few months, several young tech companies have put their faith in the power of money to influence government policy and regulation. Some lobbied the federal government for the first time, while others expanded lobbying efforts by opening dedicated offices in the US capital.

Read more here. 

Uber to overtake Twitter in market cap stakes as it looks to raise $1bn

26 November 2014

©iStock/German

Controversial taxi hire app Uber is on the verge of raising $1 billion (£633 million) in a move that could see the firm valued at up to $40 billion (£25 billion). 

Read more here. 

Spotify and Uber team up to allow passengers to stream playlists

17 November 2014

European music streaming service Spotify is teaming up with Silicon Valley car sharing giant Uber in a move that will allow passengers to stream their playlists directly through the cab’s stereo.

Read more here.   

Rated or Hated? The secret to getting a good score from your Uber driver

6 November 2014

While you were busy rating your last Uber driver, your last Uber driver was busy rating you.

Not everyone realises it, but riders who use Uber, Lyft and other services are given a rating by their drivers, and those scores can affect how quickly you get picked up — or whether you get picked up at all. 

Read more here.  

Hailo CTO: ‘I’ve never used Uber and nor will I’

28 October 2014

A Hailo boss has revealed that he’s never used rival car-sharing service Uber, and nor does he plan to. 

Rorie Devine, chief technology officer (CTO) of London taxi-hailing service Hailo, told Techworld this week: “I’ve never taken an Uber ride in my life.”

Read more here. 

TfL refers Uber’s controversial tax affairs to HMRC

16 October 2014

Transport for London (TfL) has asked British tax officials at Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to investigate San Francisco car-sharing service Uber.

Uber’s operating arm, Uber BV, is based in the Netherlands, meaning the company does not pay tax on profits it makes through its UK business. 

Read more here. 

Government to carry out review of UK sharing economy

29 September 2014

©iStock/Chris Schmidt

The UK government today launched a review of the “sharing economy” in a bid to understand the economic potential and social issues that are generated when people share products and services over the internet.

The review, initiated by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, will look at the impacts of fast-growing companies like Airbnb, which allows people to rent out other people’s rooms or homes, and Uber, which allows car-owners to give others a life via an app.

Read more here. 

Uber banned across Germany by Frankfurt court

2 September 2014

Uber has been banned across Germany following a court ruling in Frankfurt.

The temporary injunction was issued after the German taxi industry pointed out that the San Francisco-headquartered firm, which has a valuation of $17 billion (£10.25 billion), did not possess the official taxi permits that are required to operate under Germany’s Passenger Transport Act.

Read more here. 

Uber taxi app banned in Berlin on safety grounds

14 August 2014

Uber has been banned in Berlin by the city’s State Department of Civil and Regulatory Affairs.

The authority issued a statement revealing it had banned the app, set up in Berlin last February, on passenger safety grounds and threatened the firm with a 25,000 euro (£20,000) fine for ignoring the order.

Read more here.  

Rivalry between Uber and Lyft gets ugly

13 August 2014

Uber and Lyft are slogging it out in the nascent market for on-demand transportation. Competition between the two was already fierce, but now they each claim the other is trying to sabotage their business.

Lyft said that roughly 180 employees at Uber had ordered and then cancelled thousands of Lyft rides since October, slowing its service and causing lost fares. “It’s unfortunate for affected community members that they have used these tactics,” a Lyft spokeswoman said at the time.

Read more here. 

 

London's black cab drivers protested against the smartphone app last year ©iStock/Johnny Grieg

London’s black cab drivers protested against the smartphone app last year ©iStock/Johnny Grieg

In pictures: London’s black cab drivers go on strike against Uber

12 June 2014

London’s roads were brought to a standstill yesterday as thousands of black cab drivers protested against US taxi firm Uber.

The Licensed Taxi Drivers Association (LTDA), which helped to organise the protest, claims Uber’s drivers are using smartphone apps to work out fares, despite it being illegal for private vehicles to be fitted with taximeters.

Read more here.  

London’s black cabs to cause ‘severe chaos’ in protest against Uber

9 May 2014


©iStock/oversnap

London’s black cab drivers are planning to bring “chaos, congestion and confusion” to the capital’s streets as part of a protest against Silicon Valley smartphone taxi service Uber.

The Licensed Taxi Drivers Association (LTDA) said that Uber’s drivers are using smartphone apps to work out fares, despite it being illegal for private vehicles to be fitted with taximeters.

Read more here.   

Google Maps app now links up with Uber

6 May 2014

An intriguing feature that lets people find out how long they’d have to wait for an Uber ride is one of the new navigation tools in Google Maps’ mobile app.

A card for Uber will appear in the options for any destination, along with transit and walking directions, so the user can compare his options in the updated Android and iOS versions of the app.

Read more here.  

EU Commission VP Neelie Kroes “outraged” as Belgium bans Uber

14 April 2014

European Commission VP Neelie Kroes has hit out against a court ruling today that banned Uber’s ride-sharing app from being used in Belgium.

The ruling means that Uber will be fined €10,000 for each violation.

Read more here. 

Uber ride-sharing service hit by Brussels court ban

15 April 2014

A Brussels court has banned Uber from operating its ride hailing service in the city because its drivers don’t have a taxi license, local media reported Tuesday. If it flouts the ban, Uber must pay a penalty of €10,000 (US$13,800) per violation.

Uber launched its ride sharing service UberPop in Brussels in February, allowing users to book a ride from their smartphone for a fare of €0.35 per minute and €0.80 per kilometer, with a minimum fare of €4, according to Uber’s site. 

The fares are about a fifth less than typical Brussels taxi fares. The drivers are independent individuals that have held a valid drivers license for at least three years and that were vetted by the company.

Read more here. 

Uber now delivers packages with Rush courier service

7 April 2014

Uber rolled out a new service on Monday called Rush, which lets people order pickup and delivery of packages using the Uber app. It’s initially available only south of 110th Street in Manhattan, but Uber says it will expand that coverage quickly. If the service is successful, presumably it will bring it to other cities as well.

Read more here. 

UBER FOUNDED IN SAN FRANCISCO BY TRAVIS KALANICK AND GARRETT CAMP

March 2009 

 

Find your next job with techworld jobs

Leave A Reply