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First, understand that despite all the hype, neither the digitization of its interface nor the much-ballyhooed outsourcing of its operators, will be the source of Uber’s future success. Both may be more efficient than a traditional taxi operation, but they do not make a US$75-billion company. Indeed, even Uber doubts its current business model — as efficient as smartphoning the hailing business has been — will ever be profitable.


The problem is those pesky drivers. Outsourced they may be — and that outsourcing did allow Uber’s meteoric growth — but they haven’t made the company any more profitable. The bottom line in the taxi business — and let’s not fool ourselves into thinking that Uber is anything but a taxi company — is quite well known. The cost of operating any personal mobility system, ride-hailed or traditional, is, according to Eric Spiegelman, about US$2.70 a mile. Eliminate said pesky human, says Los Angeles’ taxi commissioner, and the costs drop dramatically, all the way to about 25 cents a mile.


And thus we come to the crux of Uber’s phantasmagorical valuation. It’s never been about the fact you can summon a ride via your smartphone. It has always been about the fact that the ride might not come with a driver. In simplest terms, says the Intelligencer’s Yves Smith, “Uber’s investors have been buying your satisfaction in the form of massive subsidies of services” and the only way Uber can ever become profitable is if all of its cars drive themselves.

Uber is currently losing $1 billion every quarter. The author makes the argument that it'll probably be at least 10-years before truly driverless vehicles appear, and that it will be much easier for Ford, GM, et al to get into the taxi business than it will be for Uber to purchase/lease and maintain a fleet of thousands of vehicles nationwide. Hard to see investors hanging around just to lose $40 billion .... and then see the automakers get into the taxi business. On the other hand, if a Dem gets elected POTUS, there's probably a very good chance Uber will receive Tesla-esque financing. LOL


https://driving.ca/features/feature-story/motor-mouth-is-uber-doomed
 

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Monty Mikho's #1 fan
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it will be 20+ years for true driverless vehicles
uber wanted to flood the markets with drivers while lowering the drivers pay. They did it. Now cars in my area can be 15 years old. Plenty of illegals driving.
 

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it will be 20+ years for true driverless vehicles
uber wanted to flood the markets with drivers while lowering the drivers pay. They did it. Now cars in my area can be 15 years old. Plenty of illegals driving.
First they’ll need to develop an attendant robot for each car so it can clean out all the vomit, piss, shit, snot, saliva, sexual juices of both sexes (excuse me, all 28 genders), food wrappers, leftover food, spilt booze, kid’s ice cream and just general trash, between each fare. We’re not there yet.

I guess an alternative would be that any rider could just refuse the ride due to unsanitary conditions and the car would then take itself to home base for a hose down.
 

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First they’ll need to develop an attendant robot for each car so it can clean out all the vomit, piss, shit, snot, saliva, sexual juices of both sexes (excuse me, all 28 genders), food wrappers, leftover food, spilt booze, kid’s ice cream and just general trash, between each fare. We’re not there yet.

I guess an alternative would be that any rider could just refuse the ride due to unsanitary conditions and the car would then take itself to home base for a hose down.
Airplanes aren’t much cleaner nowadays. I can remember 30 years ago when I started flying, stewardess would wipe down armrests and headrests in the plane. They kept house fairly well I’ll add. Today, you’re lucky if the take an empty can out of the seat pocket in front of you.
 

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Airplanes aren’t much cleaner nowadays. I can remember 30 years ago when I started flying, stewardess would wipe down armrests and headrests in the plane. They kept house fairly well I’ll add. Today, you’re lucky if the take an empty can out of the seat pocket in front of you.
No argument there. I haven’t flown since I retired and hope I never have to again.
 

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How do you lose a billion a quarter when all you is own is a app and use someone else's assets as theirs ?

No shit! It should take an advanced degree to fuck that up. I'm guessing it did. :-D
 

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it will be 20+ years for true driverless vehicles
uber wanted to flood the markets with drivers while lowering the drivers pay. They did it. Now cars in my area can be 15 years old. Plenty of illegals driving.

It will be a hell of a lot longer than that. You don't have to go very far around here to find yourself on windy, narrow country roads with spotty pavement and uneven ditch/ roadside/ foliage which a computer will have real trouble dealing with. I can't wait for "construction zones" and what about ice and snow?
 

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Son of Mr. David-get it ?
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How do you lose a billion a quarter when all you is own is a app and use someone else's assets as theirs ?
That was the first thing I thought.

Someone explained to me one time the way that whole 'lose" bullshit works is the company projects they will make 500 million in Q3.

After the 3rd quarter earning come out, the real income was 200 million.

So they declare they "lost" 300 million.

I always thought that "lost" was actually money you actually had and now you don't.

Apparently they "lost" money that was never their's to begin with ??
 
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