Saturday, June 17, 2017

Uber Death Watch

The issues of the, uh, culture of Uber, while important, seem to obscure the real issue: they don't have a viable business model.
Uber's list of "issues" seems to grow with each passing day. Even when it tries to turn things around something goes wrong like one of its board members making a sexist remark and ending up leaving his seat. But it's still trying to convince its customers that it's willing to change and has even started emailing riders an apology.

Some New York City customers received an email from the ride-hailing company Friday afternoon according to Business Insider that notes, "ultimately, the measure of our success is the satisfaction of our riders, drivers, and employees -- and we realize that we have fallen short." The company says that because it expanded so quickly it "failed to prioritize the people that helped get us here."

Can't double prices, and can't keep subsidizing every ride. That's the issue. As I keep saying, while local taxi/medallion regulations have their problems, and there's certainly nothing wrong with adding better hailing technology, there are/were very good reasons for supply restricting cab regulations.

And, no, self-driving cars aren't going to solve their problems. Urban taxis are actually the dumbest (least likely to function well) possible use for the technology, and nobody really believes the things are going to work in the next 5 years...(obviously I am more pessimistic than that).