Uber has decided to seek a taxi license in India where it has begun to operate again after one of its drivers there was accused of rape. The company does not ordinarily attempt to attain formal status as a taxi service as part of its regular business model.
In other Uber news the company released the results of study which it commissioned that purportedly shows their drivers earn more than taxi drivers. But is that the whole story?
In a blog post Uber declared that it applied for a license under the Radio Taxi Scheme to “reflect our commitment to providing riders with more options for safe and reliable transportation, including the ability to request a Radio Taxi on-demand.”
“Meanwhile, we continue to engage with the relevant Delhi authorities to work towards the Kolkata model, set by the Bidhannagar City Police, who have introduced new regulations for on-demand transportation technology aggregators. We believe this is the progressive model that ultimately puts the safety of consumers first, while recognizing the power of new technologies like Uber that will make city transportation safer.”
The company stated that only drivers who had received police clearance in the last six weeks will be allowed to work with it. Uber said that matching people looking for affordable rides with drivers looking for more work was its “unwavering mission.”
Meanwhile a new study has shown that while Uber’s partner drivers have skyrocketed across America, they are also out earning other taxi drivers. In Boston, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and San Francisco Uber drivers all earn several dollars an hour more than their counterparts, even doubling taxi drivers’ hourly wages in NY. Uber drivers earn more than 30$ an hour in that city.
But many critics have already pointed out that these are just gross figures for the Uber drivers who own their own cars. They must pay for all of the gas and maintenance out of however much they earn per hour and do not have regular work. Salaried drivers for taxi companies do not need to deduct anything from their hourly wages.