Published: Thu, April 12, 2018
Money | By Michele Stevens

Uber Introduces New App for Drivers

Uber Introduces New App for Drivers

So far, Uber's new "toys" are available in San Francisco and Washington DC, with around 250 bikes. This week, the company acquired Jump Bikes, which puts people on shared, electric bicycles. It's too expensive. But now, mom could reserve an electric bike for her commute back home, dad could rent a minivan for his biweekly grocery trip, and the resident teen could order delivery because she hates dad's cooking-all while that weird cousin borrows the actual family auto to go on a camping trip. Our pilot of JUMP bikes in San Francisco is off to a very strong start, with thousands of trips by riders who always have smiles on their faces as they cruise up hills-and past people riding conventional bikes - I almost felt guilty riding mine.

To be sure, it's unlikely Uber will ever be able to replicate the scale of public transit, even with its many bus-like services like Express Pool.

Getaround's offerings will appear through a side menu in the Uber app. Users will be able to find and unlock an available auto from their phones using wireless technology.

Beyond the Jump integration, Uber also announced Wednesday it will partner with car-sharing app Getaround to offer auto rentals for riders and drivers within the app. "It is somewhat compelling to be able to get all your transportation through one platform".

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On April 10, the ride-hailing company announced it is partnering with Carnegie Mellon University's Traffic21 on the project, which gives city planners and the public access to the company's anonymous data - right down to the hour - from millions of Uber trips in 20 cities across the globe.

It's part of the company's larger vision.

Uber is hardly the first tech behemoth to lay out its vision for the future of transportation.

"Autonomous is part of the solution and I think long term is going to be an important part of the solution of getting rid of auto ownership", Khosrowshahi said.

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Uber was already working with the company through a partnership - users could reserve a JUMP Bike through the Uber app, and it sounds like Uber's plan is to broaden JUMP Bikes offerings in new markets.

Uber: It's not just for cars anymore.

The new Uber driver app comes with an "Earnings tracker" that let drivers know how much they earned on their last trip, making it easy to track progress. The ride-hail company spent much of its early existence fighting off any attempts made by local regulators to gain access to varying degrees of its anonymized data.

Uber envisions being able to bring data, on-demand transportation and solving for real-time transportation needs to public transit, Khosrowshahi said.

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The new Uber driver app will be available for driver partners in Kochi and courier partners in Chennai in India before being rolled out to other cities in a phased manner. Last year, a Volvo XC90 from Uber was hit by the driver of another vehicle.

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