Mobility services provider Uber Technologies, Inc. (UBER) announced on Thursday that it had signed an agreement to feature the iconic “Yellow” New York City taxis on its app.
The company said that two taxi-hailing apps, operated by Curb and Creative Mobile Technologies, will be combining their software with Uber, thus allowing people to book their taxi rides through the Uber app. The feature is expected to be launched in spring later this year.
Commenting on the developments, Guy Peterson, Uber’s director of business development, said, “This is a real win for drivers as no longer do they have to worry about finding a fare during off peak times or getting a street hail back to Manhattan when in the outer boroughs. And this is a real win for riders who will now have access to thousands of yellow taxis in the Uber app.”
The signing of the agreement is a marked shift in policy for the transport company, which has been facing stiff resistance from traditional taxi services like the New York taxi, since the company was formed in 2009.
The developments also come at a time when ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft are facing a severe shortage of drivers. With the coronavirus pandemic hitting the companies hard, they have found it difficult to bring back drivers to full capacity, which has made the rides more expensive.
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi had said last month that the company is looking beyond New York City and plans to bring more taxis onto the Uber app.
In an interview with CNBC, he said, “I will tell you we wanna get every single taxi in the world onto our platform by 2025.”
In different parts of the world like Spain, Germany and South Korea, taxis are already available on the Uber app.
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