This week’s News on Mobility

Tap to tip!

New York Times explains what’s new in Uber’s app: riders can tip drivers now cashless! Using the app.

The tipping button brings Uber in line with Lyft, Uber’s biggest rival, which has offered in-app tipping for years. Yet by making tipping purely optional — you could always exit the car and decide to never leave a tip, and the driver would not know — both ride-summoning apps break from the traditional experience of taking a taxi, in which drivers expect tips with cash or a credit card. Uber will also start charging riders for making drivers wait. Upon the arrival of an Uber driver, if you take longer than two minutes to get in the car, you will have to pay for each minute that you are late.

Uber SWOT

Wired is updating its list of threats to Uber’s future. Beside the knowns (Waymo secrets stolen, the Greyball not-o-funny-game, cash burning), the latest is on the executive exodus:

Culture starts at the top. If Uber doesn’t add to its roster, the environment won’t shift, jobs will go unfilled, and money won’t be made. Without cash, it’s going to be really hard for the company to right the tailspin.

Volvo killed the Diesel star.

First electric Volvos to appear in 2019. That is less than 18 months and given Volvo’s own league, Tesla is going to have a strong competitor.

 Volvo is developing fully-electric and hybrid drivetrains across its lines, the first full EV from which will make its debut in 2019. It seems the company is using its relatively low build volumes to be more flexible and react faster than the German behemoths can.

As a quick note, this does not mean Volvo will stop producing ICE (internal combustion engines) as several news outlets pointed out. The primary source of this news is the lost-in-translation interview the CEO of Volvo offered to the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine. (Lucian Vinatoriu)