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From: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-36619414
Uber is to hide surge pricing notifications for more of its users to make its app less "complicated".
During busy periods, the taxi firm's customers are currently told they will be charged a "surge price" such as 1.7 or 2.3 times the standard fare.
Customers will instead be shown a fixed fee with a notice that "fares are higher due to increased demand".
One analyst said hiding the surge price multiplier could stop people being discouraged from using the service.
"I've been in the situation myself, where I've held off using an Uber during a surge," said Jim Clark, research director at Econsultancy.
"We are sensitive to price - as a nation we do like a bargain and that's one of the reasons they'll be making this change."
Uber told the BBC it was moving to a system were riders would know the cost of their journey before booking. Presently, factors such as waiting time in traffic can increase the cost of a journey
In a blog post, Uber said it had started rolling out the change in the US and India in April.
It said more cities would follow suit, but told the BBC it had no timescale for implementing the change in the UK.
'Complicated math'
In addition to hiding the surge price multiplier, Uber is also removing an option that notifies customers when the surge price drops.
Uber said the changes made the app "clear and simple".
"There's no complicated math and no surprises - passengers can just sit back and enjoy the ride," it said.
However, Mr Clark said hiding the surge price multiplier could also have a financial benefit for Uber.
"There is the argument that it becomes quicker and easier to see the price," Mr Clark told the BBC.
"But I think that's an argument only Uber might make rather than anybody else.
"From a business perspective, it makes sense - it encourages people to use the service.
"But it's important to give users a choice of whether to wait - being given all the information is the spirit of the sharing economy. At the very least they could give users the option to switch the surge information on or off."
 

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"We are sensitive to price - as a nation we do like a bargain"

At the expense of someones give up, its a ZERO sum situation. Hopefully we are on the winning side.
 

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Agreed. I, too, hope it will be a benefit though I highly doubt this was foremost in Uber's consideration of this improvement.

My guess is Uber had some qualitative/quantitative data which showed pax were 1) not following through on a trip request after being notified surge had stopped and 2) were flipping over to Lyft to get that ride instead.

Rather than lose the ride they're now going to follow Lyft's example.

Let's hope they don't remove surge amount on our ping (though it's virtually nonexistent now with its 4pt font.).
 

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I think this will be a benefit for shorter rides...a pax may be willing to pay, say, $20-$30, but may irrationally balk at anything 2x or higher, if shown the multiplier. That said, I think this will be a detractor for longer rides...some pax may have been willing to pay 2x-3x to get home, but not $80. Eh, this is all based on irrational behavior. BUT...given the length of rides I usually get, I think this will be a good thing.

And I'm a prime example of this. In downtown Sacramento, it was surging 3x. I opted to walk the 2 miles instead. The next night it was surging 2.5x. I really did not want to walk, so I just accepted it. Total fare was like $6.50. My tip doubled that. lol
 

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Actually Uber is hiding Surge from drivers too. We haven't seen a surge here since before Memorial Day.... Many reports about the same in many other cities from Vegas to Miami.
For all we know, Uber may be the only one seeing the surge and charging for it...Riders get an upfront estimate - drivers get regular rate pings - Uber pockets the difference.
 

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Taking out the multiplier factor is eliminating the cognitive dissonance that it needlessly generates, the price is the bottom line not just "as a nation" but as a species. Getting rid of the surge lowering notice is stupid though, it leaves people in "limbo" over their time management and only encourages a stronger bias when they find an alternative, which they will do their best to do. If another service is able to reliably eliminate that anxiety it will earn their allegiance...

If we had some voting or my opinion mattered I'd say "yay" to the former and "nay" to the latter. Alas though, Uber still has the initiative in most cases over everyone. Bring us DiDi!
 

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Taking out the multiplier factor is eliminating the cognitive dissonance that it needlessly generates, the price is the bottom line not just "as a nation" but as a species. Getting rid of the surge lowering notice is stupid though, it leaves people in "limbo" over their time management and only encourages a stronger bias when they find an alternative, which they will do their best to do. If another service is able to reliably eliminate that anxiety it will earn their allegiance...

If we had some voting or my opinion mattered I'd say "yay" to the former and "nay" to the latter. Alas though, Uber still has the initiative in most cases over everyone. Bring us DiDi!
I'm guessing we'll see DiDi buy Lyft eventually.
 

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Has anyone noticed for about 2 weeks now it no longer requires you to enter the number of the surge to continue the request. 3.0 surge and you tap it, the pop up comes up saying its surge, you click I accept the surge, and it's drop the pin screen. No more enter the surge multiple screen.

The benefit I see with this is customers using it thinking there is no surge for long trips and only finding out about the surge after they get the receipt email. By that point drivers already have the money.
 

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Yeah this whole "knowing and presentation" of pricing, the processes and whatnot is pretty much what is being talked about. See, people have a problem and it's global and universal among our species and in general, life itself. In short everyone has a problem with any sort of scarcity. I'm not saying it's by design but the simplicity and elegance of the surge is that is a fair expression of the market in real time. I've said it before but I'll say it again, it's about competition over space. Uber has been trying to overcome the success the surge has had, and many drivers echo that it's the only thing they drive for and it's true. But it hangs in the craw of people who do stupid things, especially when they're drunk (on life of course, having good time taking advantage of having no responsibilities for say, a night at least), and hangs in the craw of people who think it's somehow taking advantage of people.

The most simple eloquent things, first loved by all (cheap rides otherwise!), and then the with hunt at the things they don't like: all of a sudden it's Satan in our midst! I like to use the term collective cognitive dissonance/resonance.

Anyhow Uber has an "image" headache over this, and there are indeed better ways of doing the same thing--I've mentioned that Uber could have an opportunity cost deference mechanism and add most of the wight of a surge factor to that and lower the distance factor eliminating most of the crazy stuff ($300 8 mile rides). Also geographically relevant booking protocols and pricing would help to and be fair to everyone, and extend the competitiveness of the overall system outwards even further.


Also you can simply slow the surge down, both up AND down and have it not act on real time as much, cap it, and add a long distance drop off etc etc.

Just remember though, we're on a split with anything the app makers do essentially that is the important thing. If we start seeing an increase on flat fees or they take away the split, bail.
 

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I'm guessing we'll see DiDi buy Lyft eventually.
I hope so and the sooner the better! From everything I've read DiDi is the shiznit. They even have designated driver already, whoopie! All we need is regulators that can set, at this point **any** sort of standard for drivers doign this sort of work (*Seattle ahem*), and America can enjoy the same innovation they have in China!

I looked some info up on DiDi, I think they have some services started in California maybe. They have been pouring money into Lyft thats for sure. Thing I don't like about Lyft though is they don't have the per trip information on the app like Uber, that SUCKS and isn't so professional to me, the app railroads you, or tries to. It's like overcompensating for the most clueless driver to use it.

However DiDi is doing the most important thing anyone can expect from a "for-hire driver's information product service," it's analyzing the transportation market itself and creating solutions across multiple frames, and putting (hopefully ) all of it into the same nexus of analysis.
 

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I hope so and the sooner the better! From everything I've read DiDi is the shiznit. They even have designated driver already, whoopie! All we need is regulators that can set, at this point **any** sort of standard for drivers doign this sort of work (*Seattle ahem*), and America can enjoy the same innovation they have in China!

I looked some info up on DiDi, I think they have some services started in California maybe. They have been pouring money into Lyft thats for sure. Thing I don't like about Lyft though is they don't have the per trip information on the app like Uber, that SUCKS and isn't so professional to me, the app railroads you, or tries to. It's like overcompensating for the most clueless driver to use it.

However DiDi is doing the most important thing anyone can expect from a "for-hire driver's information product service," it's analyzing the transportation market itself and creating solutions across multiple frames, and putting (hopefully ) all of it into the same nexus of analysis.
You can look at the per trip info. It's under your dashboard in driving history. It shows up seconds after ending a trip. The only thing that may not show for a while is tips because customers take a while to enter those for some reason.
 

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Yeah I don't do many Lyft rides, as much as I'd like to support it because of their general driver consideration it ends up being the red headed stepchild of my overall habits. I really am sorry for that. I can bring up maybe one trip on the console, and it's just the one I did most recently, I haven't fiddled with it much since the driver console transition.
 
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