Motoring

Alphabet to Push Transportation Efforts with Deals, Internal Projects

Alphabet to Push Transportation Efforts with Deals, Internal Projects

It was recently reported that Google’s parent company, Alphabet, has recently been increasing its involvement in various transportation projects such electric scooters, self-driving vehicles, and flying cars. The Financial Times reported earlier this week that Alphabet even invested in an electric-scooter startup called Lime, with its venture capital arm, GV, leading the startup’s funding round. Mike Ramsey, a Gartner research director, further revealed that Alphabet is already a powerhouse in the space. Alphabet was already the most active corporate investor in 2017 with more than 100 deals both through direct investments and its three venture funding arms, GV, CapitalG, and […]

Singapore Wants Fines for Grab, Uber for Harming Competition

Singapore Wants Fines for Grab, Uber for Harming Competition

The Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS) revealed this week that it wants to fine Grab and Uber, saying that the merger of the two ride-hailing firms resulted in reduced competition. The CCCS proposed several remedies, such as the sale of their car-leasing business. However, the reversal of the merger, should both companies not be able to fulfill the remedies, may no longer be an option as Uber had already exited the market. The commission said last Thursday that Uber and Grab need to be penalized since they carried out the deal despite knowing the anticipated potential competition concerns. […]

“Phantom Bookings” Hit Singapore’s Ryde Technologies

“Phantom Bookings” Hit Singapore’s Ryde Technologies

A Singaporean ride-hailing firm was recently reported to have been plagued by thousands of bogus bookings which cost their drivers approximately $50,000. Ryde Technologies, who already reported the incident to local authorities, said the manipulation not only cost their partners to lose money on fuel, but also restricted them from taking on more jobs. The company revealed that around 2000 fake bookings were made by some 300 fake accounts. It was noted that Uber had also been hit by a similar incident in the past.   Source: BBC

Toyota Pumps $1 Billion Investment Into Grab

Toyota Pumps $1 Billion Investment Into Grab

Southeast-Asian ride-hailing firm Grab announced this week that it will be getting $1 million in fresh investment from Japan’s Toyota Motors to expand their partnership and explore new strategies for the region. It was also revealed that a Toyota executive will be appointed to Grab’s board of directors and a team member will be elevated to an executive position in the Singapore-based company. Grab adds that the investment will allow Toyota to integrate services such as user-based insurance and predictive maintenance with them which may serve as an incentive for drivers to drive more safely to to lower their insurance […]

Chinese Ride-Hailing Company Founder to Launch Blockchain-powered App

Chinese Ride-Hailing Company Founder to Launch Blockchain-powered App

Chen Weixing, founder of ride-hailing firm Kuaidi Dache, announced this week that he will be launching a blockchain-based ride-hailing app with the co-founder of on-demand local services firm Meituan, Yang Jun. Chen said that it will be the first time the technology will be tested on a social application on a mass scale. Jun meanwhile said at the China International Big Data Industry Expo 2018 that he thinks blockchain can be used to build new economic systems, adding that traffic from the Internet can directed and different services can be added to meet users’ needs. Source: Coin Telegraph

Uber India President Promoted to Head of APAC Operations

Uber India President Promoted to Head of APAC Operations

Ride-hailing giant Uber announced this week that the president of its India unit Amit Jain has been selected to lead the company’s business in the Asia Pacific region. Jain will be put in charge of operations in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Hong Kong and India after the firm has sold its Southeast Asian business to Grab Holdings. It is further speculated that a similar merger will take place in India, one of Uber’s fastest growing markets, with local rival Ola. Source: Reuters

Indonesia’s Go-Jek to Enter Philippines, Other Southeast Asian Countries

Indonesia’s Go-Jek to Enter Philippines, Other Southeast Asian Countries

Go-Jek, an Indonesian ride-hailing and online payments company, is reportedly investing $500 million for its expansion to the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, and Singapore within the next few months. CEO Nadiem Makarim said that riders in Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines feel that they don’t have much of a choice when it comes to ride-hailing, which is why Go-Jek will focus more on its transportation services before expanding to other sectors. The company, which counts Astra International, JD.COM, Tencent and Temasek as investors, revealed that it is already working with regulators from various countries in preparation to setting up operations. […]

Uber to Give Drivers New Protections

Uber to Give Drivers New Protections

Uber announced this week that it will be giving its drivers additional coverage and compensations such as sick leaves, parental leaves, and bereavement payments. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said that the company had “focused too much on growth and not enough on the people who made that growth possible”, adding that Uber called drivers “partners” but didn’t always act like one to them. However, unions have questioned the new protections that will be made available to all Uber drivers and Uber Eats delivery couriers across Europe, saying that a similar injury and illness insurance had been offered by the company in […]

Chinese Researchers Uncover Flaws on BMW Car Computer Systems

Chinese Researchers Uncover Flaws on BMW Car Computer Systems

Chinese security firm Keen Lab recently found 14 separate bugs on the computer systems of BMW vehicles which, according to the researchers, may even allow hackers to take partial control even while in use. The researchers said that by plugging in infected USB sticks, as well via contactless means including Bluetooth and the vehicles’ own 3G/4G data links, they were able to compromise the cars and identify the security flaws. The Tencent-owned cybersecurity firm shared a year’s worth of findings with BMW, who said that it will be working on fixes immediately.   Source: BBC  

Grab, Maybank Partners for Adoption of Mobile Wallet in Malaysia

Grab, Maybank Partners for Adoption of Mobile Wallet in Malaysia

Ride-hailing firm Grab and Malayan Banking Bhd revealed last Monday that they will be partnering to push the adoption of the GrabPay mobile wallet in Malaysia which will be launched in beta in the next few weeks.   Grab, which received its e-money license from Bank Negara Malaysia in 2017, has already made GrabPay available in other countries in various applications. However, Malaysia will be the second market where the wallet can be used to pay in restaurants and shops Source: Reuters