The ride-hailing service rolled out its Express Pool service Wednesday as a cheaper version of its Uberpool option. With the new feature, Uber probably wants to change to the current model that covers direct routing, by replacing it with simpler pickups and fewer deviations from the route for both drivers and riders. Theyll then be dropped off in a spot within walking distance to where each are going.
Uber has been testing the service since November in San Francisco and Boston and has found enough ridership to support running it 24 hours per day.
The idea of Express is to eliminate the often maze-like path traditional Uber POOLs can take as drivers make their way to new passengers, Uber says. It is reportedly rolling out in the USA, in cities like Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Miami, Denver, Los Angeles, and San Diego.
In many ways, the system is what ride-hailing users already do on their own: thinking about where they can quickly walk for the easiest pickup, trying to find a place oriented to their direction of travel and avoiding traffic congestion. The service's fares are up to 50 percent cheaper than standard shared Pool rides and up to 75 percent cheaper than UberX fares.
Using feedback from those riders, Uber "built the next generation of shared rides from the ground up", Stock said.
The Express POOL launch brings a change to the current Uber POOL model that's created to make for more direct routing, with easier pickups for drivers and fewer annoying deviations from the route for riders thanks to two key actions Uber is asking riders to help out with: Walking and waiting.
The new Uber Express Pool interface. But unlike Uber Pool, its existing carpooling service, Express Pool riders won't receive door-to-door service.
Lyft also has a similar service called Shuttle, which it rolled out in San Francisco and Chicago a year ago. The trick here is to request your Uber about 10 minutes before you need to leave, Stock told reporters last week, which will give you plenty of time for the app to match you with your driver and for you to reach the meet up point. It will also see drivers drop off passengers close to their locations instead of directly at their locations, which once again is about efficiency. The company plans to bring it to more USA cities in the coming weeks and months. This is just the start: we'll be bringing Express POOL to more cities soon!