Uber is preparing to bring back a carpooling service to its platform more than a year after the company shut down UberPool last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It, however, may or may not be exactly like how UberPool was pre-pandemic.
The plans to include a carpool service option once more is in response to the high Uber prices, which are said to have gone up by 20% compared to the prices in 2020.
Uber to Relaunch Its Carpool Service
Uber is planning to bring its carpooling service back to the fold as Uber prices continue to remain high.
"We are launching an Uber shared pool product," Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a call with investors, according to a report by The Verge.
The move to bring back a carpooling service option to the platform is seen as a response to the high Uber prices. Per the report by The Verge, Uber prices increased by 20% compared to 2020's prices.
The Uber CEO added, "We have been investing for years in a high-capacity product, which is looking more and more attractive as it relates to a unit economic basis, where that can bring the price significantly lower."
Will It Be UberPool?
Uber previously had a carpooling service, which is known as UberPool, on its platform. UberPool allowed three different passengers to share one car depending on their destinations. It was seen as one of the more affordable options Uber offered, according to its website.
The service was shut down by Uber in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and has remained unavailable for more than a year now.
According to the report by The Verge, UberPool was not popular among Uber drivers as well. Among the reasons drivers had for not liking the service are low customer ratings and the algorithm which many have deemed inefficient.
Does the relaunch of a carpooling service in Uber's platform mean that UberPool is returning just how it was pre-pandemic? Per The Verge's report, it might not exactly be the case.
The Verge's report notes that Khosrowshahi "hinted that it could be more like an employee shuttle service using Uber's matching technology that the company can sell to its corporate client."
The report, however, also noted that a company spokesperson "called the employee shuttle a 'separate effort' from the carpooling service, but declined to share more details."
Uber and the COVID-19 Pandemic
Uber and other car-hailing services took a hit due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Uber's rival, Lyft, also had to shut down its carpooling service.
The Verge says Uber has struggled to cope with the pandemic due to drives leaving the platform and prices going up. The report likewise notes that the company struggles with problems pertaining to both supply and demand.
This article is owned by Tech Times
Written by Isabella James