Uber tests cash payments in India
12 May 2015 | 6302 views | 3
Uber, the taxi-hailing app heavily associated with mobile-based electronic payments, is trialling cash payments in the Indian city of Hyderabad.
In a blog, the fast-growing darling of the sharing economy says that users in Hyderabad will soon see a 'Cash' option when they open the Uber app. If they click it, they pay the driver with notes at the end of their ride.
Hyderabad becomes the first of Uber's 300 cities around the world to get the option and was chosen "because it provides us with the right environment to test a new payment option amongst a sizeable and sophisticated rider and driver community". Other Indian cities are expected to follow.
The decision by a firm at the technological cutting edge to embrace an old-fashioned payment method is a recognition by Uber that it has to adapt its model in developing markets. According to Reuters, India has just 20 million credit cards, a fact that has seen Uber badly trail local rival Ola, which accepts cash.
Cash still dominates in the country, although earlier this year authorities set out plans for a unified electronic payments system and set of APIs designed to wean the country off of paper money and onto electronic transactions tapping smartphone and biometric technology.