Waze Carpool, Google's actual ridesharing service, expands to California

Lynne Hanson
June 1, 2017

Waze won't give specific numbers on its carpooling service, but Fried says the carpooling app is now doing at least 2,000 rides per week in the Bay Area, its only US market. Despite that, Waze Carpool might be a great (and cheap) way to make your commute a little easier.

Waze will now be pairing up drivers and passengers across a wider expanse that includes southern California's heavily congested highways. Carpool matches one rider to one driver for a one-way ride.

But while the premise might sound familiar, Waze Carpool is not looking to be a straight replacement for ride-sharing apps like Uber or Lyft. Unlike the "traditional" system for carpooling, Waze figures out the best rider and driver pair for a particular trip, and both get notifications on their smartphones.

Google's carpooling service Waze is expanding its services throughout California.

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That's according to a survey of 4,500 people conducted past year by the Shared-Use Mobility Center, a group that focuses on public transit and ways to reduce the number of cars on the road.

Google's Waze Carpool is going to be available all across California by June 6th, the company's head of business development Josh Fried told Recode. For one, drivers are capped at two riders per day, and will only make the federally mandated rate of 54 cents a mile - intended more as a way to share gas costs than as an actual side hustle. With this carpooling feature, Google is taking that community focus one step further. "People don't want to get tied to something that requires them to ride with the same people and be in a certain place at a certain time", said Sharon Feigon, executive director for the Shared-Use Mobility Center.

"When we entered the Bay Area and Israel, we went in quietly and relied on mouth of word to spread our app", said Fried.

In other words, the system has been specially planned to avoid the situation where someone would try to replace Uber/Lyft with Waze's Carpool function.

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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