Uber to Cause More Technology Disruption in 2017
Uber is launching a website outlining how its cars move around cities, in an effort to appease city authorities who have long called for more data sharing. The move has been described as efforts by Uber to cause more technology disruption in the transport space, globally.
It will provide data on dozens of cities from next month.
Uber’s transportation data could help cities to improve traffic flow.
The controversial app-based taxi service had previously argued that sharing such information could jeopardise passenger privacy. Cities are increasingly seeking data to understand, manage and maintain their congested roads.
In Nigeria, Uber also plans to trigger more technology disruption in the transport space, especially in Nigeria, where there are lots of business opportunities.
The management team led by its General Manager for West Africa, Ebi Atawodi, who made the disclosure at a press briefing in Lagos recently, listed the next technology disruption to include initiative to introduce Uber Pool and Uber Eat to its transport business that has totally changed the face of intra-state transportation in cities where it has presence.
Giving details of the disruptive technology, Atawodi said the Uber Pool initiative would allow more that one passenger who travel the same route at the same time to ride together in one Uber Taxi, and share cost, which she said, would eventually reduce the cost that a single passenger would have paid when riding alone in Uber Taxi.
According to her, the initiatives have been implemented in some parts of the world, but Uber is still studying the Nigerian environment in terms of infrastructure and the market readiness to introduce the initiatives in Nigeria. She however promised that the initiatives would be launched in Nigeria in no distant time.
The fact that providers such as Uber collect high-quality GPS data means they can provide unique insights into the operation of city streets.
Uber is now available in more than 450 cities around the world, and city officials have argued that it needs to share more data about the movements of its cars.
In a blogpost announcing the website – dubbed Movement – the firm explained what data it would be providing.
“Uber trips occur all over cities, so by analysing a lot of trips over time, we can reliably estimate how long it takes to get from one area to another.
“Since Uber is available 24/7, we can compare travel conditions across different times of day, days of the week, or months of the year, and how travel times are impacted by big events, road closures or other things happening in a city,” the company said.
It will initially be inviting planning agencies and researchers to access the data and will later make the website freely available to the public.
Uber has carried out tests with self-driving cars, seen by some experts as the best way to ease congestion. The firm is currently engaged in a fight over data in New York. The city’s officials want to collect drop-off times and locations from drivers to determine whether they are working too many hours but Uber argues that would affect passenger privacy.