Uber Technologies Inc. (Uber) is a technology-based company in America popularly known for its ride-hailing services. Being one of the leading firms in the gig economy, it also provides services including food and package delivery, freight transportation, and courier. In the fourth quarter of 2020, Uber served more than 93 million monthly active customers across the world with 3.5 million drivers.
How does Uber work?
Uber’s smartphone app connects a rider with a nearby driver who’s willing to pick them up and transport them to their chosen destination. The app sends potential trips to drivers in the area and gives them the choice to accept the ride request and get the details about the current and destination locations of users.
Uber uses CoreLocation for iOS platforms and Google Maps API for Android to identify the rider’s exact location and share it with the driver via its platform. Once the driver has accepted the request, the user receives push notifications updating the status until the vehicle arrives. When the ride is completed, the driver is paid automatically, and the rider rates the driver and the trip. Payment options integrate with Braintree, Stripe, PayPal, Card.io, and others.
Uber’s app is designed to make the booking rides and tracking function simple for the users. Here are some significant features:
- Real-time tracking details: The feature enables users to locate drivers and direct them if they are taking the wrong direction or a long route.
- Multiple drop-off points: This feature provides two additional stops that allow users to pick up and drop off an additional rider.
- Easy and quick payment: To make the payment quick and easy, payment options include debit/credit card, Wallet pay, Amazon Pay, Google Pay, and more.
- Split Fare: The Split Fare option allows riders to add another rider to their journey and share the payment with them.
- Scheduled rides: The riders have the option to book their ride up to 30 days prior to the trip and can be able to make changes at any time before the trip. Uber also sends a notification to remind the day.
- Calendar shortcuts: The feature makes an instant shortcut in the rider’s mobile device when they request a ride with the same address in the calendar.
- Intuitive User Interface: The intuitive user interface (UI) app allows users to interact with the app simply.
Ridesharing services have transformed short distance travel that was once the purview of taxis, buses, and rail. Here are a few of the main reasons consumers use Uber:
- Convenient and cashless: Cashless transactions are automatically charged through a credit card when a user completes the ride.
- Affordable ride options: The service can be cheaper compared to the local taxi services, though Uber’s surge pricing sometimes lessens the cost difference between the two services.
- Professional service: The rating system on drivers’ services helps Uber to provide reliable and professional service to users.
- 24/7 Availability: Uber is not constrained to business hours, as it is available 24/7 across the world.
- Option to choose a vehicle: Uber provides the user with the option to choose the vehicle as per their requirement.
Uber’s other services:
- Uber Ride: Enables riders to hire drivers with vehicles.
- Uber Eats: Allows users to order and get food delivered from collaborated restaurants.
- Drive with Uber: Empowers drivers to drive with Uber at their convenience and get paid.
- Deliver with Uber: Anyone who has transportation and valid driver’s license can be a part of Deliver and get paid.
- Uber for Business: Provides services like rides, deliveries, courier services, and more with companies of all sizes.
- Uber Freight: Provides freight transportation services or transporting commodities and goods according to the client’s requirements.
- Uber Health: Offers stress-free hospital rides and healthcare products delivered to patients.
Here’s a brief description of some of Uber’s top competitors and how they are different:
Lyft: As one of the top ride-hailing service providers, Lyft is the major competitor for Uber. Uber’s split fare option allows riders to share the cab with multiple riders and thereby the payment, whereas Lyft has no such option to share the ride. Lyft is more transparent than Uber as the receipt of Lyft includes the duration, length, and the price of the ride, whereas Uber’s receipt only shows the price of the ride.
Didi: As a Chinese-based ride-sharing company, Didi offers an affordable riding experience for users across China, Australia, Japan, and Latin America. When it comes to the comparison of Uber and Didi, Didi is not as widely available as Uber.
Curb: Curb is a U.S.-based ride-sharing platform that provides users with a reliable and safe riding experience. Compared to Curb’s 24 hours in advance ride booking, Uber allows riders to schedule a ride up to 30 days in advance.