cross pond high tech
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Google said to undercut Uber with expanded ride-share service in San Francisco

Google is running its own ride-sharing service in San Francisco, The Wall Street Journal reports. The move would put Google in direct, immediate competition with Uber, which helps explain even further the recent departure of Alphabet executive David Drummond from Uber’s board. Google’s new offering piloted in May, according to the WSJ, and uses the Google-owned Waze app to connect commuters for shared carpooling.

The plan is apparently to open up said program to all San Francisco residents starting this fall, with an eye toward expanding it further provided that works out. And unlike Uber, this is more of a matchmaking service, which brings together riders with drivers headed in the same direction. Fees are going to be low, too — the report says Google is intentionally keeping them low to keep this a peer-to-peer co-driving arrangement, rather than something that professional drivers will want to use in a dedicated capacity, like Uber and Lyft.

Waze’s operational model to date has focused on connecting drivers via crowdsourced navigation information. Users report things like accidents, roadside obstacles, storms and traffic jams, and these are immediately available to other drivers. Shortly after Google acquired Waze in 2013, it started using its crowdsourced navigation data in the primary Google Maps app, as well.

Philippe J DEWOST's insight:

Waze,chapter 2. And apparently the end of the love story between Google and Uber

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Is Apple Plotting A Route To A Waze Acquisition? Rumours On The Road Point To Yes

Is Apple Plotting A Route To A Waze Acquisition? Rumours On The Road Point To Yes | cross pond high tech | Scoop.it
There can be no doubt that one of the hottest startups of the last couple of years has been social sat-nav smartphone app Waze. Not surprising in an era when – largely due to Apple initially dumping Google Maps in iOS 6 – everyone woke up, as if from some slumber, about the importance of decent mobile maps. Something many had taken for granted was thrown into sharp relief, especially when it became clear that even the mighty Apple was capable of royally screwing up its own maps product. So it comes as almost no surprise to us that there are rumours flying around that Apple is sniffing around Waze with a view to a possible acquisition. After all, Waze is already a data partner for Apple’s Maps app and wasthe only app to gain meaningful marketshare after the Apple Maps fail. We have reached out to both. An apple spokesperson said: “We don’t comment on rumors or speculation.” We got a “we never comment on rumors” from Waze. [UPDATE: Another source confirms that negotiations are advanced, but Waze wants $750M and Apple is willing to do $400M plus $100m in incentives. Waze had less than $1M in revenues last year (primarily from ads). Negotiations may take awhile.]
Philippe J DEWOST's insight:

Paving the way vs. the road ahead :-)

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Philippe J DEWOST's comment, January 4, 2013 1:30 PM
Course change : seems that acquisition of Waze is not this certain...http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-not-buying-mapping-startup-waze-2013-1
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Facebook Is Close To Buying Israeli Startup Waze For $1 Billion

Facebook Is Close To Buying Israeli Startup Waze For $1 Billion | cross pond high tech | Scoop.it

Waze and Facebook partnered in October 2012 when Waze released its updated version that allows users to share their drive with their Facebook friends.


This would be Facebook's third acquisition in Israel. It bought Snaptu in 2011 for $70 million and Face.com in 2012 for $60 million.


In the last year, Waze tripled its user base to 45 million and in March alone, 1.5 million users downloaded the free mobile navigation app, Calcalist said.

Philippe J DEWOST's insight:

the deal would clearly not be for the userbase per se, so it has to be about engagement or part of a bigger plan. I just hope this won't change Waze's service too much as I find it amazing.

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