Monday, July 27, 2015

"Uber can't be stopped. So what happens next?"

From The Verge:
Last week New York City backed down from a plan to cap the explosive growth of Uber's vehicle fleet. The mayor's office declared the deal it reached to be a win-win for both sides, and warned Uber that an eventual cap is still a possibility if it doesn’t comply. But that threat seemed hollow given how abruptly the city had caved. Rather than highlighting a corporation brought to heel, the ending seemed to affirm Uber's enormous ability to shape the political process.
 "Even the mob can't stop Uber"
In the week leading up to the scuttled vote, Uber rolled out a tidal wave of attack ads, robocalls, influential allies, and an advanced get-out-the-vote campaign among its users. And in hundreds of cities, states, and countries around the globe, it's waging a similar campaign, with astonishing success. At this point it’s worth asking: if Uber can't be stopped, what does the future look like?
"Uber's goal is to replace private car ownership"
China would seem to have the best chance at reining in Uber. It’s a market that has stymied giants like Google and Facebook, and local technology firms often enjoy the tacit or explicit support of the government against foreign competitors. But Uber is braving these challenges. Its offices have been raided and equipment has been seized. Its two largest Chinese rivals merged, creating Didi Kuidai, which claims a 95 percent market share. But Uber is also growing incredibly quickly. It recently hit nearly 1 million rides a day in China alone, and says the country will soon be its largest market. Uber is moving to raise a $1 billion war chest so it can grow from 11 cities to 50 in China....MORE
It was only a couple months ago we posted "Big Money: Uber Guts Carnegie Mellon Robotics Lab To Hire Autonomous Car Developers" with the intro:
Raising money at a $600 illion zillion fafillion valuation allows you to buy pretty much anything.
The way this is going to pan out is: you won't be able to own the vehicle but its use will be mandated. The car is autonomous but the people aren't.
Mark my words.