Uber has taking the world by storm, and the world has San Francisco to thank for it.
Uber was founded in 2009 and, after a beta run in the summer of 2010, premiered in San Francisco the following year. It would be inadequate to describe it as anything less than a tremendous success; in its first year alone, it generated over $44,000,000 in revenue, and in half a decade has become a multi-billion dollar corporation with a presence in 60-plus countries and nearly 550 cities worldwide.
Benefits of Uber
Uber presents people with a plethora of benefits, not the least of which is its potential to have a positive effect on traffic congestion and pollution. At present, not enough data has been assessed to positively determine the environmental effect of riding Uber, but available research does seem to suggest that Uber is having a positive effect on traffic and pollution, and may even be contributing to a rise in automobile recycling.
As Uber continues to grow in popularity, it is quite possible that some people who now rely on cars for daily commutes, errands or other tasks may opt to forgo the traditional and rely on Uber instead of owning their own vehicle. Economy fares are quite reasonable; riding Uber is more affordable than taking a cab and quicker than public transit. A typical commute with Uber When you consider the rising costs of car insurance and the significant expense of car payments, riding Uber for many people may even be more affordable than owning a car, especially if used in conjunction with low-cost metro trips.
This means that some people who own multiple vehicles may suddenly find themselves with cars they no longer need or use. If these are newer vehicles, it would only be logical to sell them on the market. But what should be done about older vehicles? Over 264,000,000 vehicles have been manufactured since 2012. 2015 saw a record number of new car sales in the United States. Short of a major automobile recession, automobile production is unlikely to slow down. This means that a tremendous strain is being placed on the iron and coal productions needed to manufacture personal automobiles.
Auto recycling is one way to supplement this demand of resources. Every vehicle recycled means that much less natural resources need be harvested. It is significantly less expensive to recycle processed materials than it is to harvest and process raw resources, and significantly reduces the cost of making vehicles and the energy burden of automobile production. The benefits of auto recycling are significant, and it is entirely possible that, as Uber continues to explode in popularity, it may be complimented by a surge in auto recycling, effectively compounding the environmental benefits of both services.
Not only is Uber providing a service that encourages environmental responsibility, but they are also advocating services that pioneer the development of ever-more-advanced technologies. One of the hottest news pieces in advanced automobile technology is the self-driving car. The self-driving car has been in development for over half a decade, and has recently entered the test phase in several major cities across the United States. While there are a variety of concerns over this revolutionary technology, Uber is among the companies pushing forward the effort to put this new technology into practice.
In fact, Uber is so committed to pursuing progresses technologies that they are willing to butt heads with local and state governments. Uber came under fire recently for testing out self-driving auto technology in their headquarters in San Francisco. This was done in direct opposition to local state laws, which state that it is illegal for any company to operate self-driving vehicles without a permit. The California Department of Motor Vehicles effectively ordered Uber to cease and desist.
Uber has complied with California state law, but their determination to explore the possibilities of this technology has not been derailed. A single day after receiving the ultimatum from the California DMV, Uber decided to ship their vehicles to Arizona, where self-driving vehicles have already been approved in the city of Phoenix.
It will be interesting to see how far Uber is willing to go in order to incorporate this new technology in their services.