The service will be launched later in January and will gradually be expanded to other cities.

Uber to relaunch Auto service starting with Bengaluru and PuneImage for representation
Atom Cab Aggregators Monday, January 08, 2018 - 13:22

Two years after shutting down its autorickshaw offering, cab aggregator Uber is relaunching its ‘Auto’ service. It will first re-launch the service first in Bengaluru and Pune.

When contacted, an Uber spokesperson said, “At Uber, we continuously evaluate product needs to ensure that we can provide the most efficient, affordable and convenient ride to everyone, everywhere. Auto rickshaws are ubiquitous to mobility options in many Indian cities. To expand transportation choices for our riders, we are excited to launch AUTO in Bangalore and Pune.”

Uber’s rival Ola has been successfully running its autorickshaw service ‘Ola auto’, since its launch in 2014. It is currently present across 73 cities and with over 1.2 lakh autos signed up with Ola Auto, as per a Mint report.

With the battle between the rivals intensifying, Uber is now relaunching the service later in January starting with two cities.

According to the company, it will first start with introductory fare of Rs. 25 for 4 Kms.

“Gradual geographical expansion like this is common to how we operate in cities around the world and it is something that we are looking at very closely,” the spokesperson added.

Uber first launched UberAUTO in 2015 with New Delhi, with cash as the only payment option. It was then expanded to several cities including Bhubaneshwar, Coimbatore and Cuttack. The service was then shutdown around March 2016.

According to the Mint report, Auto will now include various payment options including Paytm, debit/credit cards and will ensure safety by onboarding only licensed, existing auto-drivers who have been screened and accredited by the authorities and every driver partner on AUTO will be required to submit valid government documents before they are given access to the Uber app.

Uber has been growing aggressively in India given the fierce battle against Ola. Interestingly, this also comes right after SoftBank – who is also an investor in rival Ola – committed an investment of over $1 billion as it faces stiff competition globally from other players such as Lyft.

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