Uber has launched its first new product in three years, Uber Express Pool. Reported to be its cheapest service yet, the new car sharing option is formally rolling out across U.S. cities this week.
How does it work? When users select the Express Pool option, the app then groups nearby commuters heading to destinations that are close to each other. Uber then determines a "smart spot" for riders to congregate at, where they will be met with a driver who will drop them off at their respective destinations. Unlike the app's current Pool service, there’s a single pick up and drop off spot for all riders.
After launching the service in San Francisco and Boston back in November, additional cities such as Los Angeles, Miami and Philadelphia are reported to have access soon. At such a low price point, comparatively, the Express Pool option is cheaper than Uber's current car-sharing service, as riders are boarding the same vehicle at the same time. The downside is, walking to pick up spots could mean waiting longer for your ride, which Uber revealed should be no more than two minutes.
The Express Pool option has, however, drawn comparisons to that of public transportation. Uber’s director of products, Ethan Stock argued, “We don’t think that this is at all like a bus. Three of the fundamental things about how buses work is they have fixed pickup and drop-off spots, a fixed route and a fixed time schedule that they’re operating on. Everything about the Express Pool product is dynamic.”
What do you think of Uber Express Pool? Let us know in the comments.
In other news, an interactive spy museum recently opened in New York.