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Google Launching Uber-Like Service Through Waze

Say Hello To Google’s New Service Google’s Waze is moving into Uber and Lyft’s ride-sharing turf with plans to expand its own ride-sharing program in San Francisco. Google acquired...

Say Hello To Google’s New Service

Google’s Waze is moving into Uber and Lyft’s ride-sharing turf with plans to expand its own ride-sharing program in San Francisco. Google acquired Waze in 2013 and offers riders a better driving experience because it offers real-time driving directions based on comments from other drivers. In May, Google launched a carpool pilot program around its California headquarters, enabling 25,000 workers from several large firms, including Google, Walmart, and Adobe to connect with fellow commuters and carpool together.

Google now plans to open the carpool option to all San Francisco-area Waze users this fall, in hopes of building a full-fledged ride-hailing service like Uber. The company hopes to mimic Waze’s development in Israel, where the company was founded. Waze is available as a traditional ride-hailing service in most parts of Israel, after Google tested the carpool service on Israeli commuters last year. Anyone in the San Francisco area with a Waze app can sign up to be either a rider or driver. Under the current pilot, users have been limited to 2 rides a day- to and from work and riders pay drivers about 54 cents per mile. For now, Google is not taking a cut of the profit.
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The company is relying on user reviews to weed out problem drivers and Waze’s drivers are not employees of the company. Waze, which is a part of Google, expects to easily get business because it already has millions of users through Google. Also, the Google users can alert others to police and traffic accidents. In 2013, Google invested $258 million into Uber, but are now considered rivals.

Uber is in the process of developing its own mapping software similar to Google’s. The two companies are also racing to develop driverless cars, as Uber says it is about to start testing robotic taxis over the next several weeks. Let the battle for ride sharing and driverless tech begin!

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