Ever since 2010, the word “uber” has been transformed from a simple term meaning “supreme” or “extraordinary” to one of the fastest growing international car transportation services in the world. To get to the top, the company has been boldly setting fares lower than competitors’ and has been offering decent wages to its drivers. Because of this, they’ve taken over 250 cities by storm.
While Uber was in the process of changing the face of the taxi service, Google took notice and became an investor. So much so, that Google Ventures and TPG offered Uber $258 million in funding back in 2013. About a year later, they invested more.
With so much money put into Uber, it would be silly for Google to create its own car-sharing app to rival them, right?
According to Bloomberg, that looks like it might be Google’s plan. Google began its push into the world of transportation more than five years ago when it introduced its own fleet of self-driving cars; it said recently that within two to five years, the autonomous vehicles will be ready for widespread use. According to the head of the project, Chris Urmson, one of those uses could be a shared vehicle service where people can tell the car where to go and it’ll take them there.
While no one is quite sure what will happen, a strong case can be made for using autonomous cars for car-sharing in the future; it would be incredibly convenient and without the need to pay its drivers, Google would save a lot of money. It also already has the understanding of Google Maps, which is what Uber uses to run its service.
Neither company will comment on the situation, so we’ll just have to wait and see.
What do you think? Do you think Google will create its own service? And if so, do you think it’ll be better than Uber’s?