Houston Uber Car Accident Lawyer
Uber Technologies, Inc. is an American multinational transportation network company (TNC) offering services that include peer-to-peer ridesharing, ride service hailing, food delivery, and a bicycle-sharing system. The company is based in San Francisco and has operations in 785 metropolitan areas worldwide. Its platforms can be accessed via its websites and mobile apps.
As of 2019, Uber is estimated to have 110 million worldwide users a 69.0% market share in the United States for passenger transport, and a 25% market share for food delivery. Uber has been so prominent in the sharing economy that the changes in industries as a result of it have been referred to as uberisation, and many startups have described their products as “Uber for X”.
Passengers use an app to order a ride, where they are quoted the fare. Uber uses a dynamic pricing model; prices for the same route vary based on the supply and demand for rides at the time the ride is requested. At the end of the ride, payment is made based on the rider’s pre-selected preferences, which could be a credit card on file, Google Pay, Apple Pay, PayPal, cash, or, in India, Airtel mobile wallet or Unified Payments Interface. After the ride is over, the rider is given the option to provide a gratuity to the driver, which is also billed to the rider’s payment method. In some locations, if the driver has to wait more than a few minutes after arriving to the pickup location, riders are charged a wait time fee.
While Uber is viewing drivers as contractors, courts in the United Kingdom and Switzerland  consider their drivers to be employees of the company. The status of drivers is an unresolved issue (see Criticism). Uber drivers use their own cars although drivers can rent or lease a car to drive with Uber. Uber offers car rental or leasing via Getaround, Hertz, and Fair and Uber and BYD Auto have a partnership to provide leasing of electric cars to Uber drivers in Chicago and New York City.
According to Uber, drivers must meet requirements for age, health, car age and type, have a driver’s license and a smartphone or tablet, and must pass a background check. In many cities, vehicles used by Uber drivers must pass annual safety inspections and/or must have an Uber emblem posted in the passenger window. Some cities also require Uber drivers to have a business license. A mechanism called “Real-Time ID Check” requires some drivers to occasionally take selfies when logging on to Uber.
- UberX, the basic level of service, provides a private ride in a standard car with driver for up to four passengers. UberX and UberXL cars with child safety seats are available for an additional charge. Persons with a service animal may use any type of Uber service, as required by law. Rider service levels, many of which are only available in certain cities, include:
- ASSIST provides additional assistance to senior citizens and passengers with a physical disability, but cannot transport a non-folding wheelchair (see UberWAV for wheelchair-accessible vehicles).
- Bike is a dockless bicycle-sharing system that allows users to rent electric bicycles via Uber subsidiary Jump Bikes in nine metropolitan areas in the United States including San Francisco and Washington, D.C. Uber users are also able to rent Lime scooters in 46 cities via the Uber mobile app.
- BLACK provides a black luxury vehicle.
- Chapchap, available in Nairobi, Kenya is a low-cost service offering transport via a Suzuki Alto, a kei car. “Chapchap” means “faster” in the Swahili language.
- ESPAÑOL, available in California, is a version of UberX (see below) that provides a Spanish-speaking driver.
- Comfort includes newer cars with additional legroom.
- FLASH, available in Hong Kong and Singapore, is a service that combines both private cars and taxis, operated by ComfortDelGro in Singapore.
- Green, available in Europe, provides an electric car or hybrid vehicle at the same price as UberX.
- Health, available for health professionals in the United States, is a HIPAA-compliant method to arrange rides for patients to-and-from their appointments. Patients without smartphones can receive pickup information via Text messaging or via the health professional’s office.
- Hire, available in India, provides a vehicle for hire for local travel.
- Lux, provides upper-class vehicles.
- MOTO, available in India, Indonesia, Pakistan, and the Dominican Republic, provides transportation by motorcycle.
- POOL, available for up to two people per party, provides a ride that is possibly shared with other riders going in the same general direction. Unless the rider pays an additional fee for door-to-door service, the rider(s) are required to walk a short distance at both ends of the ride to save time for the driver and other riders. The pickup/drop-off locations are indicated via a map in the mobile app.
- Upper-class vehicles are marketed und the names Premier (India), Premium (New York City suburbs), Exec (London, Berlin?) and Select.
- SUV provides a sport utility vehicle.
- Taxi allows users to summon a taxi using the Uber software application. Users pay an additional booking fee and can leave a gratuity through the app. The service was implemented to appease taxi drivers who protested the increased competition from Uber.
- Van, available in Europe, provides a van for groups of up to 6 people.
- WAV aka ACCESS provides a wheelchair accessible vehicle.
- UberAuto, available in India, Sri Lanka and Pakistan, provides transportation by auto rickshaw.
- UberGO, available in India and Sri Lanka, provides for a ride in a hatchback.
- UberX provides a private ride in a standard car for up to 4 passengers.
- UberXL provides a ride in a large vehicle that can seat up to 6 passengers.
After each journey, the users and drivers must both rate each other on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Riders and drivers who have low ratings can be deactivated. In May 2019, Uber began actively banning riders with low ratings. The company has not defined in detail what will be considered a “below average rating”, but the update is intended to remove users who are unable to improve their behavior.
Houston Uber Car Accident Lawyer
Other products and services
- Uber Eats provides meal delivery from nearby participating restaurants for a fee of approximately $4.
- Uber and issuing bank Barclays offer a Visa Inc. credit card that offers customers a cashback reward program and other incentives.
- Uber Freight matches freight shippers with truckers in a similar fashion to the matching of taxi passengers with drivers.