Online cab aggregator Uber has signed an MoU with the Haryana Government to introduce its ridesharing services (including private vehicle ridesharing) and help the government with “smart city” development in the state. The company hopes that this will create an alternative to car ownership, while the government hopes to reduce pollution and time spent in traffic in the cities.
Uber’s press statement states that it will invest Rs 120 crore or $17.8 million in the state for this. The company already has two MoUs in place with the Telangana Government and the Rajasthan Government to create employment. Early last month, Uber partnered with the Union Labour Ministry of India to let those people who wanted to sign up as drivers on the platform access the National Careers Service to do so.
Bike taxis next up?
This is a smart move by the company, also given the already progressive stance of the government to adopt bike taxis and ridesharing services. Since MoU concentrates on ridesharing, Uber will likely create awareness and marketing campaigns around the service to drive adoption. It wouldn’t be surprising if Uber launched its UberMOTO bike taxi service (which is really just bike ridesharing) in the state, where it’s legal to do so. Uber hit a roadblock after the Karnataka government deemed the service illegal last week, the same week it was launched, and now requires bike taxi operators to apply for a license for their service in order to operate in the state.
P2P sharing and ridesharing in Bangalore and Delhi
In January, Uber expanded UberCOMMUTE, a solution for private car users to offer carpooling options to Bangalore from 7AM to 9PM. This was a follow up to its service in Delhi, which was launched In December 2015. UberCOMMUTE is not to be confused with UberPOOL, Uber’s ride sharing product which was launched in September last year. While UberCOMMUTE is for private car drivers who want to share car rides when they’re driving, UberPOOL lets users book a Uber ride and possibly let other people ride with them to their destinations. Uber claims that its drivers make 10-15% more from UberPOOL, as compared to drivers on the Uber platform.
Ola Share, Auto and Shuttle in UP: Last month, Ola signed an MoU with the Government of Uttar Pradesh to provide entrepreneurship opportunities to 50,000 men and women over the next 5 years and will launch Ola Auto, Ola Share and Ola Shuttle in the state.
Uber’s wallet for India
Meanwhile, Uber has been working on a closed mobile wallet service in India, stating that the RBI’s two factor authentication for card payments was cumbersome. As of now, Uber users can pay for rides through Paytm wallets, Airtel Money, debit and credit cards, and cash as of now. Competitor company Ola too had a closed wallet but ran afoul of the RBI’s guidelines and tied up with ZipCash for its wallet services which also allowed Ola Money users to pay for other services such as OYO Rooms, Saavn, Lenskart, Zo Rooms and TinyOwl.
Our Uber coverage.