According to Uber, those who choose to sign up as a driver for the ride-sharing service will be able to get themselves on a path of financial independence.
However, there has long been a disparity in the money that Uber claims its drivers are making compared with the amount being reported by the drivers themselves.
A new report by Buzzfeed reveals that Uber drivers are not making as much money as previously thought, and nowhere near the figures that the ride-sharing company previously estimated.
Buzzfeed used leaked internal price modeling information and calculations provided by Uber itself, based on data covering over a million rides and thousands of drivers in three major markets in the United States, specifically Denver, Colorado; Detroit, Michigan; and Houston, Texas.
The average-earnings figure that the report came up with for drivers is less than $13.25 per hour after expenses. Specifically, Detroit drivers took home $8.77 per hour, Houston drivers took home $10.75 per hour and Denver drivers took home $13.17 per hour.
The figures are the driver's earnings upon the deduction of expenses, which includes gas and insurance. For comparison, the minimum wage is $8.50 per hour in Detroit, $7.25 per hour in Houston and $8.31 per hour in Denver.
The figures are also being compared with a study that was released last year. In the report, it was claimed that Uber drivers earn an average of $19 per hour.
The calculations are based on a period spanning two weeks late last year, and do not take into account the skill levels of drivers. More experienced drivers will be able to make more money compared with novice ones as they craft strategies to be able to accomplish more rides.
The calculations also only cover the regular peer-to-peer rides, which do not include income from sister services such as UberTaxi and UberBlack.
A spokesman for Uber said that it is difficult to know what drivers do while logged into Uber's app but not actively involved in picking up a passenger or in a trip, which hints that there are some discrepancies in the calculations.
That said, the Buzzfeed report shows a small glimpse into the financials involved in being an Uber driver, and that the city where the person chooses to become one plays a big part in the driver's take home pay.
The report comes just as Uber has released new features and perks that will benefit its drivers as the company looks to appease them amid an array of lawsuits.