The transportation company Uber has announced a $500 millions investment on new mapping technology. According to an Uber statement, the initiative aims to eliminate third parties in the company’s services.
Just last year, Uber announced its initiative of mapping the United States with their brand new “mapping cars,” which would provide the company with accurate information of locations, roads, and traffic patterns. The San Francisco-based company recently announced the adding of Brian McClendon to their team. McClendon used to work on Google’s mapping system and now it will be directing Uber’s mapping database.
According to recent reports, Google Maps has also increased its fee of charges to companies using the app as it’s main core service.
Digital mapping is the main core of Uber’s services, since it not only allows the company to determine the best travel routes, but it matches the closest driver with the client and provides an adequate service.
According to McClendon’s statements, Uber is looking to create their own mapping database that fits the company’s needs. It appears Google Maps don’t fit the company’s requirements and has unnecessary data, such as ocean topography. The company wants to specialize this new database in creating traffic patterns and determining precise pickup and dropoff locations. Uber’s acquisition of the mapping and location company deCarta, will definitely come in hand.
“Existing maps are a good starting point, but some information isn’t that relevant to Uber.. The company also needs to be able to provide a seamless experience in parts of the world where there aren’t detailed maps,” said McClendon in the published statement.
This new mapping initiative also is being proposed by Uber to determine better routes in parts of the world where Google Maps might not be detailed enough. Uber has already released its mapping cars in Mexico.
Uber’s investments have escalated quickly since the company started to gain fame in 2010, most recently the company gained a $3.5 billion investment to expand new markets and to create new technologies. At first, the company’s investment in mapping technology and database was going to be a smaller amount, but McClendon assures the company has agreed to double the amount for better outcomes.
Google and Uber have worked together in the past and have collaborated with each other in several cases, yet the transportation company is looking to expand its services without the help of the tech giant. Uber has been slowly gaining more knowledge about mapping and creating greater opportunities for itself in the area, like acquiring new mapping technology and image collection date from Microsoft.
On July, Uber also announced a new partnership, this time with the company DigitalGlobe which will provide better satellite imaging technology in Uber services. The company hopes to expand the initiative to the several other countries it serves and to expand and create new changes on mapping technology.
Uber invests a hot half billion in mapping the world https://t.co/hUk7OOOfuf pic.twitter.com/BakQmIDBRT
— Gizmodo (@Gizmodo) August 1, 2016
The slow, yet constant, growth of the company allowed its founders to expand to a new U.S city every month in 2011 when it was just beginning. International expansion started in 2011 when Uber arrived in Paris
In 2012, Uber arrived in Toronto and it expanded to a 90 driver’s service in London, Australia was the next city to benefit from the services. Currently, the company is in countries and cities such as Singapore, Asia Pacific, Johannesburg, South Africa, Cape Town, Tijuana and several others.
Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp, Uber’s founders, expanded the company on an international level in 2012 and by 2015 the company was already worth $62.5 billion. The overwhelming growth and investments in the company have paved the way for new experiences and goals. Uber is currently working on self-driving cars, just like Google is doing nowadays.
On May Uber announced it’s new self-driving car probe in Pittsburg, with a hybrid Ford Fusion packed with radars, laser scanners, high-resolution cameras and many other devices to help the car on its mapping.
Uber's Plan to Map the World (for #SelfDriving Cars) – https://t.co/mqgmHSqB8c
— Winston A Saunders (@WinstonOnEnergy) August 1, 2016
The probe car was driving down Pittsburgh’s avenues and streets with a human supervisor in case something went wrong. Although the car’s main objective was to test mapping tech, it also helped Uber’s early self-driving software. Uber is constantly assuring its public the importance and commitment of a good service and improving life quality by making everyday chores and habits in lighter and easier actions.
Source: News Room