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In recent years, Uber has become a household name amongst millennials for their easy and accessible service. All you have to do is open your phone, push a button and as long as you don’t puke in the cab, you’ll be easily and affordably transported to your next destination with a solid five-star rating. However, it was recently announced that the app based taxi-company is being sued by San Francisco taxi company Flywheel Taxi for alleged predatory pricing. If you don’t know what predatory pricing is, let me quickly explain. In short, it’s when a company begins to offer goods at such a low level that other suppliers cannot compete.
In this particular case, Flywheel alleges that Uber is using the billions it has in funding to outprice its competitors. The complaint notes, “From July 2012 through the present date, the taxicab industry has experienced an approximately 65 percent decline in ridership and has lost more than 30 percent of its drivers as a result of Uber’s illegal actions” but fails to mention how shitty most cabs actually are.
In all honesty, it’s shocking that those percentages weren’t drastically higher considering the last standard cab experience ended up with some cabby driving me on a 10-mile “shortcut” racking up my fare in the wee hours of the morning.
With Uber’s customer service just being an e-mail away, driver ratings, GPS tracking for its drivers, and overall ease of use I can only assume the 65 percent of remaining riders still using standard cab services are the elderly and hipsters. Both of whom take the time to dial up their next fare from their antique rotary phones.
It will be interesting how this all pans out in court. Best of luck to the plaintiff’s legal team, especially if they have to try and hail a yellow taxi in order to get to court on time. .