Tag - Uber
Uber users are more likely to agree to pay surge pricing for the ride-hailing service, if they are low on battery, according to company research. In a discussion about the "dynamic pricing" of its services, the company's head of economic research, Keith Chen, revealed that a user with a smartphone that has an almost empty battery is prepared to pay more for the ride than someone with more battery life available to them.
In a transparency report on its dealings with the US government, alternative ride provider Uber Technologies has revealed that it provided data on more than 12 million riders and drivers to the government -- but that nearly all of it was abstract statistical reports to various US regulatory agencies. The company did, however, show that it would provide details of trips, pickup and drop off areas, fares, vehicles, and drivers to law enforcement when requested, but had just 415 requests from such agencies on just 469 users -- mostly revolving around the use of stolen credit cards. Importantly, Uber said it had not received any FISA orders, or national security letters to obtain data on drivers or passengers.
Whether city dwellers or tourist, we know you've heard of it: Uber. For everybody else, what's Uber? Uber is a controversial taxi replacement which connects riders with drivers through an app, and we couldn't be more smitten with the idea. Here's how our experience with Uber has gone so far.
Swift, the programming language typically associated with iOS and OS X app development, may soon find a greater role within Android. A report claims Google is looking into potentially making Swift a "first class" language for Android, effectively making it easier for app developers to use the language to create software for the platform. The same report also suggests other major entities are looking to expand their usage of Swift on their respective technology platforms.
Uber is making it easier for families to manage payments for rides of specific family members, by slowly rolling out a shared payment system. Starting in Atlanta, Dallas, and Phoenix before an expected rollout across all markets, the Family Profiles allows for one person to designate contacts who can use the managing user's payment details to pay for rides instead of their own, with the app now allowing up to 10 riders to share a single payment method.
When we reviewed Citymapper back in March, we concluded that it was very impressive, and that it could only get more so as it added further cities to its list of supported regions. It's done that, but the developers have also released no fewer than 15 update releases, adding new cities and new features to reach Citymapper 5.12, and a total of 29 cities.
Uber is working to improve the routes taken by its drivers, by mapping the roads itself with its own fleet of vehicles. The ride-sharing company has confirmed it has its own Street View-style mapping vehicles traveling the roads and taking its own imaging data, following a photographic leak of the vehicle on Facebook, with the suggestion it is using the data generated to replace the Google Maps-derived data it currently relies on.
Google has revealed plans to increase the number of people going online in India, by providing high-speed Wi-Fi in railway stations. Working with Indian Railways and communications company RailTel, the scheme proposes the installation of the free hotspots in 100 of the busiest stations by the end of 2016, serving over 10 million passengers per day. The ultimate goal of connecting 400 of the stations across the country is accompanied by another to make it self-sustainable, enabling it to fund expansion into other areas.
A lawsuit brought against the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission in New York by four credit unions was adjudicated today. Queens Supreme Court Justice Allan Weiss ruled that the commission need not block the "pre-arranged transportation" generated by Uber, with the ruling preventing shutdown of the service in New York City. At stake is not only Uber's continued existence in New York City, but the financial backbone in the city built around loans to acquire taxi medallions, valued at up to $1 million each.
Uber is significantly bolstering its mapping operations and research, by acquiring technology and staff from Microsoft for an as-yet undisclosed amount. Map-related assets from Bing are being passed on to the app-based taxi firm, reports TechCrunch, with approximately 100 employees also being transferred over as part of the purchase, in yet another navigation-related acquisition from the transport company.
Now AAPL Stock: 100.23 ( -0.18 )
Trade-up program expands in Europe
Smartphone users in France, Italy, and Spain will have until at least August of this year to trade in old iPhone, Windows Phone, or Android models at Apple Stores, and put the reward towards a new iPhone -- thanks to an expansion of Apple's trade-in program into those countries. The money given for the trade-in must be applied towards a new iPhone on a two-year payment plane, and traders must qualify under a credit check as part of the program. Interested customers can apply for the trade-in at their nearest Apple Store. http://bit.ly/1qPsldD
NBCUniversal adds Bravo, Syfy, E! to Apple TV
NBCUniversal has launched three new apps channels for Apple TV users. Bravo Now, Syfy Now and E! Now brings users access full seasons of current and past episodes of most of NBCUniversal's catalog. The Bravo Now app includes shows like "The Real Housewives of New York Cit," "Below Deck Mediterranean," comedy "Odd Mom Out" and "Top Chef." The Syfy Now app offers up shows like "The Magicians," thriller "12 Monkeys" and the reality show "Face Off." The E! Now app serves up shows like "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," "Botched," "#RichKids of Beverly Hills," Caitlyn Jenner's "I Am Cait," and "WAGS." While some content is free, most content requires users to authenticate via their cable satellite or telco TV provider. http://bit.ly/20K4Pea
Apple rolls out Arabic version of Apple.com
Apple has rolled out a new version of its Apple.com website for Arabic language users in the United Arab Emirates. The site utilizes a right-to-left reading format where it has been updated, although the upgrade is still in progress with a number of page links still in the original English language left-to-right format. Of particular note is that the site debuts an all-new custom Arabic font created by the Tarek Atrissi Design agency, giving it a highly contemporary look and feel. The new support for Arabic on its host website follows the introduction of full support for right-to-left languages in iOS 9, and the addition of Arabic support to Siri late last year. http://apple.co/20JHGIM
Adobe previews Photoshop content-aware crop
Adobe has previewed a new 'content-aware crop' feature from the next version of its Photoshop CC. The new feature is similar to its 'content-aware fill' from the current version of Photoshop CC, and potentially saves users time when cropping photos in a way that might otherwise leave blank white space in the frame. Adobe's 'content-aware' tech automatically assesses the blank space and seamlessly fills the blank space with the nearest related content in the space when a photo is expanded or rotated without the need to manually clone that part of the image. The feature allows users to move a horizon by adding more sky or ground, change the aspect ratio by adding content around the edges of the image and fill in the corners of an image when rotated during a crop. Adobe says the feature is coming soon and will be automatically available to Creative Cloud subscribers. http://adobe.ly/20JDFEu
Markzware updates Q2ID for QuarkXPress 12 files
Graphic design file conversion tool maker Markzware has launched a new version of its Q2ID tool. The InDesign plugin enables users to open QuarkXPress files within a new InDesign (INDD) document, without rebuilding the QXP document from scratch -- the new version includes support for QuarkXPress 12 files. Q2ID Subscription members can download the new version as part of their annual plan. A single-user can purchase the plugin for $200, with other licensing options available. http://bit.ly/1Z4dS9t
PopChar X 7.5 arrives
Ergonis Software has released PopChar X 7.5, an improved version of the company's tool for finding and inserting special characters and exploring fonts. PopChar X 7.5 adds support for combined emojis in the Apple Color Emoji font, enhances the "Font Info" view, and adds many further enhancements that improve overall speed and stability. PopChar X 7.5 retails for €30 ($34), and is free for anyone who owns a license for PopChar X 7 or purchased a license for PopChar X 6 on or after March 1, 2014 [4.5MB]
Safari Technology Preview release 5 arrives