Uber has announced UberPool, a feature that allows a passenger to pick up other riders who intend to get to the same destination as you’re going and have the bill be split among each passenger.
This seems like a pretty good strategy for Uber as the new feature allows better utilisation of its drivers as well as to reduce the cost of each passenger’s’ ride. That being said, this does not mean that all initial passengers would want to share a ride with a stranger nor allow the driver picking them up. That said, UberPool will still remain in beta, and will not be released across every Uber market.
The feature is now noted as a “social experiment” to test how willingly would the average passenger share a ride with an unknown person with mutual destinations to get to. There isn’t much data collected from the beta yet, but for now only users in the San Francisco Bay Area will be receiving the private beta rolled out by the company.
In addition, a handful of testers from Google will be joining the private beta too. They might optimise Google Maps to better integrate with Uber as both companies shares the same vision of a more energy efficient world with less traffic congestion.
Uber will be expanding the beta more broadly on August 15th.