20 UberFacts You May Not Have Known
Posted: Mar 03, 2016
The Uber world is a big place and we do not expect you to have every news and detail within your reach. This is why we have subtly volunteered to be your eyes and ears - teaching you ‘the Uber way’. By being a member of the Uberkit.net community, you are sure to receive valuable information that will enrich your knowledge of the Uber business. In this post, we will be providing a number of facts that you may not have known about Uber.
Uber started out in San Francisco and was founded by University of California ‘dropout-turned-CEO’ Travis Kalanick alongside Garret Camp, who is also the founder of StumbleUpon.
2. Name Change
When it was first founded by Travis and Garret in 2009, Uber was referred to as UberCab. It was only later that the name was clipped to form ‘Uber’. This, from a personal view, may be Uber’s first way of showing that its goal was beyond providing rides. It could also be interpreted as a move to disengage itself generally from the ‘cab norm’.
3. Lawsuits and Controversies
Uber, despite the very impressive growth and improvement it is bringing to top cities in the world, is being faced with lawsuits in many cities across the world. Most of the lawsuits have been filed by taxi agencies who feel threatened by the competition and the new Uber business model. There have been cases where Uber drivers have been assaulted as well as several protests and demonstrations by cabbies in a few cities. Despite these challenges, Uber has grown to be the biggest rideshare company on a global scale.
4. Uber API
A while ago, Uber released an API that would allow its on-demand ride providing services to be integrated into other third party applications. Since then, there are a number of companies that have integrated the Uber API into their apps and websites in order to enhance its performance. Examples are StarBucks, Expensify, Tempo, OpenTable, and so on.
5. Uber Eats
Many do not know but Uber does not only offer rides to people. Uber Eats (UberEats) is a relatively new food delivery service that has been started up in several areas, including San Francisco, Washington, L.A, Seattle, Chicago, New York, Atlanta, Toronto and more.
6. Uber Drivers Are Not Employees
Contrary to what many people think, Uber drivers are not employees – they are independent car owners who have registered on the Uber platform to offer rides to registered passengers at an Uber-regulated price.
7. Passenger Rating
Many people know about the Uber policy that allows riders to rate their drivers based on the trip experience. What many riders do not know, however, is that the driver is also allowed to rate the passenger. Just like it is with the driver rating, too many low ratings may result in deactivation of a passenger’s account.
8. The Network
Uber as at June 1, 2015, celebrated its fifth year anniversary with an announcement that the business now had its network chain running through 311 cities and 58 countries across the globe.
As at July 2015, Uber had raised almost a billion dollars. This brought the total funding up to $5 billion. As at that time, the total company value was put at almost $51 billion dollars.
10. Surge Pricing Fact
Need someone to blame for the occasional hike in price? Don’t blame Uber, blame the Uber algorithm. This is Uber’s automated price calculation system. It is what regulates the Uber fare rates according to the odds of trip execution. It is also the program responsible for raising the price when the demand is higher than the number of available drivers.
11. Driver Base
On a monthly basis, hundreds of thousands of new Uber drivers sign up on the platform. In August 2015, Uber announced its millionth driver had just completed his first trip.
12. Experimental Protocols
Uber often experiments with new concepts in various cities. They test the business plan for particular services on a subtle level to understand the profitability before going public about it. Over the years, there have been many ‘tested-and-discontinued’ services that many people did not get to hear about. An example is UberMOTO in Paris, a service which allowed riders to order a motorcycle ride. This program was stopped in 2013.
13. Craziest Uber Innovation
One of Uber's craziest innovations to have been initiated was UberKITTENS. This service gave people in seven U.S. cities the option of buying cuddle time with real kittens. The proceeds were given to animal shelters.
14. Support Project
In September 2015, Uber gave $5.5 million to support a new robotics faculty chair as well as three fellowships at Carnegie Mellon University. The partnership with this educational institute was proudly announced in a post put on Uber newsroom.
Uber’s customer service is basically done via emails. Despite several criticisms concerning the need for phone lines to be put in place to ensure fast feedback on issues, Uber seems confident and perfectly satisfied with what they are able to provide their users via email.
16. Uber Magazine
Did you know that Uber has a print and online magazine specifically designed for its drivers? Yes, the maiden issue of Momentum Magazine was released in March 2015.
17. Uber & Women
Uber has pledged to have 1,000,000 women drivers by 2020. This is a move to empower women with self-reliant minds across the globe.
18. Uber Partner Companies
Over 50,000 companies enrolled in Uber for Business in its first year of operation. The top four cities for Uber business travel are London, Mexico City, Paris, and Toronto.
Uber was the first company to be authorized by the California Division of Measurement Standards (DMS) as providing a reliable and accurate way to recommend fares using GPS data.
20. Uber is Easy Life
Now this is a fact you might have known before now. We just have to resound it in your ears. The Uber business has been proven to have solved many issues as regards transportation across the world. The ease that comes with the business is the reason for its ever growing community. So I should ask you, would you rather hail a cab?
About the team
Founded in 2014 by Malik Akande, a former Accenture employee, the Uberkit team is dedicated to helping Uber partner and entrepreneurs maximize their profits and ROI. For entrepreneurs looking to find out how much an Uber Black (Uber black car) or UberX partner makes (how much do Uber drivers make?), or how to start and grow their uber business, the various"Uber Kits" were designed.
-by Ola John
I live in the beautiful state of mp. I am married and have four great children.