Google is now saying that it is not planning on competing head to head with Uber in ride sharing services. The denial came after a report in Bloomberg said that Google would.
[See that story here.]
Bloomberg’s report shocked many because Google has a $258 million investment in Uber. So why would it want to compete with Uber?
Google tweeted, “We think you’ll find Uber and Lyft work quite well. We use them all the time.”
Google is famously developing driverless cars. Uber has said that it is pursuing a driverless taxi. Perhaps the two are actually cooperating on their plans together behind the scenes.
Or maybe the tweet was just an example of misdirection. People should take note of what it does not say. There is no formal denial there, nor is there any mention of the Bloomberg story.
Since Uber is not, as of yet, a publically traded company, no one can accuse either it or google of engaging in PR shenanigans to manipulate stock prices. Perhaps the two really are partnering in secret on new technologies. Perhaps they really are feuding with one another right now.
We will see.
Meanwhile some experts are musing that Google should just buy out Uber already. It is not like the Internet titan is lacking in funds these days.
James McQuivey, an industry analyst at Forrester who studies digital disruption among major consumer companies, told PC World, ““Google buying Uber makes a tremendous amount of sense as long as Google understands that it’s not buying a ride hailing or ridesharing service, it’s buying a new transportation platform.”
“In some ways, Uber will never become the Uber it promises to be if it doesn’t team up with a company that knows as much about you—and has as much permission to offer solutions to you—as Google does, ” he said.
In other Google news, the company’s senior vice president of knowledge, Alan Eustace, is retiring.