Uber has revolutionised commuting and car ownership but in the US and other countries it has an unfair advantage over normal commercial vehicles.
I love UBER. I love that I am not dependent on rude and lately non available black & yellow cab drivers.Personal drivers are even ruder and invariably don’t turn up on the exact day we need them desperately.
UBER is THE SYMBOL of the start-up “UNICORN “and with over 50$ billion dollar of valuation it is a called now “DECACORN”.
UBER is what every young techie who dreams of a start-up wants to grow up to be.
Also there is also no defense of the heinous culture of the company which was UBER, which has resulted in the founder being strong armed to step down.
In India UBER cars are special cars that are registered as radio taxis. But elsewhere in the world UBER cars are ordinary cars and drivers individuals like you & me. In their spare time they switch on their UBER APP & log on and voila, a school teacher turns up as an UBER driver.
Last year I visited my son in San Francisco and stayed for a couple of weeks at Berkeley. Iam not kidding, every UBER ride I took, the driver was more educated than me. EVERY ONE.
Made me feel like an illiterate, entitled, over expecting worm of a human being.
In the US or most of the other countries in the world ordinary cars and drivers are registered as UBER drivers and log on and log off to make an extra buck in their spare time. Of course some have made it their full time profession.
UBER while fulfilling a great need in the society circumvents the need of owning a taxi medallion or the vehicle being registered as a taxi.The vehicle is unregistered , does not need the initial capital investment, or a commercial licence, the insurance is non commercial, no commercial plates, the vehicle does not need to be inspected rigorously which otherwise a taxi would be subjected to.
These savings are passed on to the consumers and they are most happy.
Here is the counterpoint , it is an illegal business.
Here in India, if you want to run a smallest of enterprise, even a pan & cigarette shop you need a plethora of permits. That is the way the big brother regulates you.
UBER hired an army of lawyers to defend lawsuits and won cases by arguing that the by not allowing UBER to operate, you are old fashioned or do not want to accept technology.
America hates to be called unprogressive and UBERs success is the success of their super aggressive, wily, lawyer team.
Had I raised this above point it would have been summarily dismissed. How can a society as acrimonious as the US let anyone off the hook, if the business is illegal?
This viewpoint is by a Harvard Business Review author. You can read it here.
He is asking for UBER to be shut down.
Brick & Mortar may be old school and may have taken their customers for granted.
But the playing field has to be level for Old school or New age.
When technology is changing the way business can be done, laws need to keep up and not get steamrolled by start up glamour.