Google to launch ride-sharing service in Bay Area, taking on Uber, Lyft

By Riley McDermid : bizjournals – excerpt

Google will launch its own ride-sharing service this fall in the San Francisco Bay Area, taking on Uber and Lyft, after launching a test pilot program in May, news reports said Tuesday.

Google will connect riders via its traffic and commute-sharing app Waze and will recruit drivers through the app as well, reports the Wall Street Journal, which broke the news.

Google began a pilot program around its Mountain View headquarters in May that enabled thousands of local workers at pre-designated companies to use the Waze navigation app to connect with fellow commuters.

“In the San Francisco pilot, any area Waze user can sign up as a driver, but ridership is limited to roughly 25,000 San Francisco-area employees of several large firms, including Google, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Adobe Systems Inc. Riders are limited to two rides a day—intended to ferry them to and from work,” the paper reports.

“In the planned expansion, anyone with the Waze app in the San Francisco area could sign up to be a rider or driver, the person said. Though Google currently doesn’t take a cut, the company is exploring different rates in Israel and San Francisco, the person said.”…(more)

Google will not need any drivers for long. They will shift to using their driverless cars as soon as they can to reduce their costs. Drivers will be out to lunch for good. Hope they know their days are numbered.