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I used to think that surging occurred when there were many requests at once. But someone told me this actually occurs when many users boots up the app at once. If there are many app instances turned on in one area this will trigger a surge, even if they are not requesting.

The latter actually makes more sense, but is it true?
 

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It's supposed to be more rider apps on and not enough driver to handle the load. I've seen many surges with "no drivers avaliable".
I also think that Uber can and does turn it on at will.
 

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I've been trying to reverse engineer the surge algorithm. From what I can tell it's not real time, but in 5 minute blocks. Therefore, a bunch of people booting up the app would not in itself trigger a surge. It appears that when the number of cars available in an area drops to some percentage of the number of cars booked then the surge starts. I've watched it on the rider app as the cars disappear one by one, then it gets down to the last two and the surge hits. The trick is, when you know a big demand is coming (last call, last quarter of the game and the home team is down etc) log out of the partner app and log into the rider app. When the surge hits, log back in to the partner app.
 

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pppffftttt. What's a Surge ?
 
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who knows i have been in area's with pings right left and center, i ignore, turn off my driver app , turn on pax app and see no uber available , but no surge to bring drivers in. (scratches head) waited 10 min , nothing
 
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