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VIDEO: The first rule of Surge Club is: You do not talk about Surge Club. Uber drivers across the U.S. are manipulating fares by turning off their ride-share apps at the same time. Then, when they turn the app back on, the drivers all get a surge. LINK


REPORT: Uber, Mastercard, PayPal, Spotify, Visa to back Facebook’s new cryptocurrency, Libra. Each company will invest around $10 million in a consortium that will govern the cryptocurrency. LINK

  • FLASHBACK: Uber is making a fintech push with a New York hiring spree. The goal is to create products that increase loyalty and engagement among users and drivers, including a possible bank account, the sources say. LINK

VIDEO: YouTuber and self-described “queen of shitty robots” transforms a Tesla Model 3 into a pickup truck. LINK

  • FLASHBACK:  Elon Musk teases a pick-up truck on Tesla Motors Unofficial Podcast saying, “You’ve got to be able to get a really great truck for $49,000 or less. It’s gotta have incredible functionality from a load-carrying standpoint,. The goal is to be a better truck than the F-150, in terms of truck-like functionality. And be a better sports car than a [Porsche 911].” LINK

Its a long-shot, but General Motors Co. is mulling over the idea of building an electric Hummer. GM halted sales in 2010. Back then, the 10-miles-per-gallon Hummer H2 made the brand a symbol of automaker indifference to global warming. The vehicle was so heavy its weight placed it beyond the reach of federal government rules for fuel-economy tests, driving environmentalists bananas. Hummer’s death knell came when oil soared past $100 a barrel. LINK

  • FLASHBACK:  Austria’s Kreisel Electric has fulfilled Arnold Schwarzenegger dream of an electric-powered Hummer H1. The firm’s powertrain gives the gigantic SUV 483 horsepower (360 kilowatts), and the 100-kilowatt-hour battery provides nearly 186 miles (300 kilometers) of driving range. LINK

Berlin Start-up Circ, previously known as Flash, drops 15 electric scooters in Berlin andwins the right to be called first. 24 hours later, Lime dumps 250 scooters. Both companies had to pay a 3-digit-per-vehicle-fee for the right to launch before scooters become permitted. LINK

… and Berliner’s first reaction to electric scooter … “I’d rather ride a bike”  LINK


Kim Kardashian West announced that she’ll be partnering with Lyft to provide as many as 5,000 former inmates rides to and from job interviewsLYNK

  • FLASHBACK: The City of New Orleans is offering families a 5$ Lyft discounts to get to juvenile court. LYNK

French car-sharing co. BlaBlaCar launches BlaBlaBus in the Netherlands to compete with Flixbus. LINK

  • FLASHBACK: Blablacar raised €101 million funding to acquire Ouibus with an aim to move beyond carpooling and plan foray in online bus service. LINK

Airbus has teamed up with France’s RATP transport operator to explore the viability of Flying Taxis in time for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. LINK

  • FLASHBACK: Taxi Operator Working on Self-Driving Cars for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Companies are working to bring autonomous cabs to Tokyo’s streets in time for the Olympics. The companies hope this will help address a labor shortage in Japan’s taxi industry attributed to an aging population. LINK

Uber’s self-driving cars are getting “bullied” by pedestrians and human drivers says the head of autonomous driving. Bullying takes the form of rude gestures, driving up close behind them, not giving the right of way at junctions and challenging the cars to brake. It seems humans are pushing the bounties to see what they can get away with. LINK

  • CONTEXT: To better understand why people bully self-driving cars here’s a bunch of photo of vandalized bike-share bicycles LINK
  • FLASHBACK: Judge sentences Arizona man for pointing a gun at Waymo self-driving car to one year of supervised probation. Officers noted in their report that the man with the gun showed signs of dementia. The 69-year-old man told police he felt everybody was watching him and he was frustrated and angry with his neighbors. LINK

In China, people don’t snitch to reporters. So NPR’s Shanghai correspondent bought a cab and offered people free taxi rides in exchange for interviews. While he drove passengers they shared stories of their personal lives, struggles and views on all kinds of issues including but not limited to the economy, censorship, corruption, Donald Trump and children pajamas.  LINK

Anthony Barba

About Anthony Barba

As the founder of mobility as a marketing consultancy pumpkin, Anthony helps brands utilize transportation to increase their competitive advantage & create new revenue streams. once gave TEDx talk on how the rise of the mafia in las vegas is connected to the future of mobility … then walked off stage to buy his daughter a Spider-Man action figure next door.

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