Monday, July 6, 2015

Waze pushes into Uber territory with RideWith carpooling app

Uber may be facing countless battles around the world - mostly from the traditional taxi services - but that isn't stopping Google from dipping its toes in the same water, with a new carpooling app from the Waze team, called Ride With.

No one denies public and private transport desperatly need to becom much more efficient that they are today, and while we're waiting for the fleet of autonomous vehicles that will reduce traffic by 90% we must use whatever we can... today. For Google/Waze that can be done with the "RideWith" carpooling app.

Carpooling apps are nothing new, and we wouldn't be event talking about it if they were free. The issue is, this RideWith will still require payments, that Google describes as a way to chip-in, helping to cover the fuel costs. But to keep things as far away as possible from Uber-like protests, Google is imposing several restrictions: drivers will only be able to share two rides per day, which won't allow them to make a leaving out of this even if they were thinking about it.

For now, RideWith is limited to Israel, but if the pilot program is successful, it may soon expand to other cities around the world. And then, the fact that it's a Google project and coming from the team at Waze (that has the trust of a vast community of drivers around the world) may make it work where similar apps and services have failed.

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