DETROIT -- Within five years, a majority of ride-hailing company Lyft’s rides will be in self-driving cars, the company’s co-founder and president predicted on Sunday. John Zimmer also said that personal car ownership will come to an end because autonomous rides will become a cheaper way to travel than owning an automobile. He made the predictions in an essay on the future of transportation in urban areas. Technology, auto and ride-hailing companies are moving quickly toward self-driving vehicles. San Francisco-based Lyft is testing autonomous cars on the streets of San Francisco and Phoenix in partnership with General Motors. Its main competitor Uber is starting to carry passengers around Pittsburgh in autonomous cars with a human backup driver. Zimmer said autonomous cars will start out giving rides at low speeds, around 25 miles per hour, in limited areas with a number of restrictions. The cars also won’t be able to operate in bad weather. “As … [Read more...] about CBS News Logo Uber not the only ride-hailing company with sights set on driverless cars
Arlington, Texas is trading public buses for ride-sharing. After introducing commuter buses in 2013, the city is replacing them with a new partnership with app-based ride-hailing company Via, which will operate 10 vans to shuttle residents. It's the first U.S. city to experiment with this kind of venture. "The commuter bus didn't apply to me at all, because it didn't take me where I needed to go," Bill O'Toole said. Since January, O'Toole left his car at home and commuted with Via, summoning the van from his phone for a flat fee of $3 a ride or a weekly pass for $10. The city partially subsidizes the fees. "Stress at work has been alleviated, and it's probably just the fact that I'm not starting stressed," O'Toole said, adding, "I really hate driving." Getting around Arlington without a car is not easy. It's a sprawling community of 99-square miles and sits 12 miles from Fort Worth and 20 miles from Dallas. But Arlington residents have repeatedly voted against spending money to build … [Read more...] about Texas city ditches buses for Via ride-hailing service
BEIJING - Apple Inc. (APPL) has invested $1 billion in Chinese ride-hailing service Didi Chuxing, the main competitor in China for Uber Technologies Ltd. Apple will become a strategic investor alongside Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group and Tencent Holdings Ltd., an online games and entertainment service, Didi Chuxing announced Friday. China's ride-hailing industry has grown rapidly, with competitors spending heavily to subsidize rides to capture market share. The latest deal reflects Apple's increased emphasis on services as growth in its iPhone business slows, said Jack Kent of IHS Technology in a report. "The investment in Didi highlights the strategic importance of China and the services segment for Apple's future strategy," said Kent. "It could help Apple gain greater insight into the behavior of users beyond its own ecosystem." Didi Chuxing, previously Didi Kuaidi, operates in 400 Chinese cities. In September, the company and Lyft of the United States agreed to link their … [Read more...] about Apple invests $1B in Chinese ride-hailing company
DETROIT -- Electric car maker Tesla Motors has plans to get into the ride-hailing and sharing businesses. The company hinted at the venture earlier this week when it announced that all of its cars would come equipped with hardware needed to drive themselves. The company says in a disclaimer that use of self-driving Teslas to make money with ride-hailing or sharing will be allowed only on Tesla’s own network. Details will be released next year. A message left for a Tesla spokeswoman was not immediately answered on Friday. Tesla announced Wednesday that all cars including the lower-cost Model 3 would have more cameras, sensors, radar and computing power so they can drive themselves. Software would be updated over the internet to allow the cars to do more as the features are tested. … [Read more...] about Tesla may enter ride ride-hailing business next year
LONDON — Uber’s claim that its drivers are contractors – and not employees entitled to vacations – was rejected Friday by a British tribunal, in a ruling that may have implications for a range of companies that rely on self-employed workers. The employment tribunal ruled that the two drivers who brought the action were employees of the ride-hailing service, and so were entitled to paid time off and a guaranteed minimum wage. Uber plans to appeal. While the ruling may eventually affect as many as 30,000 Uber drivers, it also has implications for more than 100,000 independent contractors in Britain’s so-called gig economy, where people work job-to-job with little security and few employment rights. Such employment, often for app-based services for everything from food delivery to health care, has surged as the Internet cuts the link between jobs and the traditional workplace. “The Uber ruling will demystify much rhetoric on the gig economy being … [Read more...] about CBS News Logo Uber drivers handed big victory against ride-hailing company in U.K.