Many cities have bus systems, but they’re not always well-utilized by the majority of residents. The city of Arlington, Texas, located just outside Dallas, for example, had a single bus route — and discovered that most of its riders were students at the University of Texas branch there.
So, late last year, Arlington voted to end the route and replaced it with a ridesharing service in December. Like a few communities in the U.S., Arlington went with Via, a technology developer and provider of dynamic on-demand shared rides, to provide the network technology.
Using the Via technology, riders in Arlington are able to get a seat in one of 10 six-passenger vans roving city streets for a $3 fare. Riders who don’t have a smartphone can use a dial-in phone number, which is available in addition to the app.
Uber’s CEO is making a bold prediction, stating that within the next decade, ride-sharing customers will be chauffeured around in flying cars.
“There will be people flying around Dallas, Texas,” CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said at the DLD tech conference in Munich, according to Bloomberg Technology. “I think it’s going to happen within the next 10 years.”
Five years ago, when she was still an insurance broker with Marsh, Kate Sampson called insurance underwriters at American International Group (AIG) and other insurers with a new concept.
“I’m working with this company and this is what they’re going to do. They’re going to be the first in peer‑to‑peer ridesharing and everyone will have an app and you can share a ride with a stranger,” she told the underwriters.
Unless you live in a major city, it’s pretty well accepted that to participate in modern society, you need car. Cars are how we commute to our jobs, how visit our friends and how get out of town for rest and relaxation. But what if this weren’t the case? What if our private vehicles were replaced by subscription-based fleets of driverless cars? What would that do to our cities, and what would that do to our lives?
Although it might sound like science fiction to some, this reality is on the horizon. The technology is already here, it’s simply a matter of how quickly we’ll see it spread.
Uber and Lyft may have driven into a problem, at least in Las Vegas.
For years, the city’s taxi drivers raged about losing fares to upstart competitors with better technology and cheaper rates. For years, Uber and Lyft capitalized on this to cannibalize not just the taxi industry, but each other as well. There are no winners in war. And although the biggest loser has, to date, been the taxi industry, Uber and Lyft haven’t exactly won, either. By refusing to play by the same set of rules, each seems to have backed itself into a corner and given taxi drivers the upper hand once again.