Uber, A startup starting trouble

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Open up your phone, get the uber app download from App or Google Store, set your prefered pickup location, order a taxi and pay online with your phone upon arrival. In 2009 people thought the future was here. Now, in September 2017, 3.5 Million Londoners are experiencing Uber as something from the past. Transport of London rejected the Uber’s appeal for an extension on their operating license in the UK capital. By the 30th of September, the current operating license expires.

Uber has managed to grow from a worth of a little over 200 thousand dollars to a massive 70+ billion dollars. Its growth in numbers and revenue figures has been incredible – and still is – increasingly appealing for investors worldwide. Every year, it generates billions of dollars in investment, which are needed to sustain its large worth and growth, since it is not a profitable firm. On the opposite side of the large amounts of investments, there are annual losses that exceed the 3 billion dollar mark. Although the numbers for revenue and losses are leaning more towards positive prospects for Uber, the public image is only losing support.

The staggering financial numbers about the Silicon Valley-startup have kept a lot of negative news on low heat. As big as the company is, and as much as it is in the news, it is hard to see through all the contradicting messages about the ride hailing company. The infographic below highlights the main areas that have contributed to the damaging of Uber’s public image.

The decision of the TfL was expected by many, as uber has already been under scrutiny by the same authorities before. Many news outlets have been following Uber closely, resulting in an avalanche of accusations on the Silicon Valley prodigy. PR blunders, Scandals and Lawsuits have been central in many news headers about Uber in the last years. Last week,TfL ruled that Uber was too “unfit” to be extended the operating licence London.

3.5 million users and over 40 thousand drivers are now left without the Uber app download they have grown so dependent on. So what’s next? Londoners are now forced to return to conventional black cabs to cater to their traveling needs. That means going back to old ways of hailing a ride to get you to your destination.

Transport For London sets out all the approximated prices for rides in London’s black cab industry. Compared to Uber the fares are different according to the time and day of the week your taxi is requested. The only time Uber prices will increase is when there is a surge. This is an increased price at times of low supply of available rides, to incentivise other riders to fill up the excess demand. A feature that the black cab is missing in its business model, where supply is given at all times.

Payment options at Uber are fast and reliable. Due fares are paid automatically through an automated credit card payment option on the Uber-app. For black cabs the payment speed is limited to the speed of the cash calculations of the drivers, or the speed of the credit card systems installed in the car. To play into the higher demands that Uber created with its fast service, the black cab trade has to update its ePOS sytems, or create an app that mirrors Uber’s way of doing it.

Travelers have to grow comfortable with a loss in comfortability of the use of taxi-transport, but don’t have to worry about safety as much anymore. TfL ensures that all the drivers are licensed and tested drivers and take a strong stance towards safety and have excellent guidelines for users to provide extra safety. That is one thing that Uber can learn from the black cab business.

Until Uber has fought all the appeals it can possibly make against TfL’s decision, it is allowed to operate. In that time, it might be useful for the 3.5 million uber app download users and 40.000 drivers to adopt to a London lifestyle without uber app download. After the fierce decision by Sadiq Kahn, mayor of London, to reject Uber after September, and the new Uber CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, admitting wrongdoing, it is safe to say that uber app download is blacked out in London.

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