Uber: We're Making Taxis Evolve

Ride service says it's doing more for the ride industry than taxis have in years.

By Chris Roberts
|  Tuesday, May 27, 2014  |  Updated 5:08 PM PDT
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Uber: We're Making Taxis Evolve

Getty Images

London's black taxis are presenting Uber with perhaps its toughest opposition yet.

Uber thinks taxis are in the Stone Age, and that without its oft-controversial app, passengers would still be trying to flag down Fred Flintstone.

Uber is trying to break into its stiffest market yet: London, where the black taxis, driven by people so well-trained they literally went to school for it -- a far cry from the drivers staring at smartphones, trying to figure out where to go one meets in the States -- are fighting back against the upstart startup.

The company made a statement Tuesday, according to CNet, that may not endear itself to the Brits. Uber praised London cabbies as "arguably the best taxis in the world."

However, they're still taxis.

That means "there is room for all and there is room for more and better, " Uber said. "We are bringing competition to an industry that hasn't evolved in years."

Taxi drivers counter that they've evolved, with 60 percent of them using a taxi-hailing app called Hailo, CNet reported. They also fume that Uber is indeed a "disruptive" technology, as the Silicon Valley-bred firm likes to boast -- but it's disrupting the regulations, the rules by which taxis play.

So far, regulator Transport for London licenses Uber vehicles as "private hire operators," not taxis. Taxi drivers are incensed, and plan a citywide protest of Uber vehicles on June 11.

Get the latest headlines sent to your inbox!
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Leave Comments
Bay Area Proud
Bay Area Proud is NBC Bay... Read more
Follow Us
Sign up to receive news and updates that matter to you.
Send Us Your Story Tips
Check Out