Uber Discouraging Drivers From Using In-Car Advertising Services

uberlogodogsWhile some taxi services are using every available square inch of their cars to advertise to passengers and the public, Uber cars have remained ad-free thus far. Some Uber drivers had hoped to make some extra cash through in-car marketing, but the ride-sharing service is saying no.

Viewswagen is a recently launched advertising platform that allows drivers to show promotions on tablet screens in cars’ backseats. It uses GPS to generate specific ads targeted toward passengers as they ride. Drivers could get $3/hour, the company estimates.

But Business Insider reports that Uber is telling drivers that Viewswagen adds little to the ride-sharing experience and should probably not be used.

In an email with a driver – which was posted to a closed ride-share driver Facebook group – Uber staff said it would deactivate cars using the ad service, Business Insider reports

“Uber unfortunately cannot keep vehicles with those types of advertisements on the system,” the post states.

In a statement to Business Insider, Uber confirmed that it was discouraging drivers from using the in-car advertising system, but that the support staff’s assertion that drivers would be deactivated was incorrect.

“It is Uber’s goal to make the rider experience as smooth and comfortable as possible,” the company said in a statement. “We don’t believe that in-ride advertising enhances the ride experience, and we discourage driver partners from working with third-party in-ride advertisers such as Viewswagen. Also, it’s important to note that Uber is not affiliated with any in-ride advertising company in any way, and we are not providing information about riders or drivers. That said, this Uber representative was mistaken, and these actions haven’t resulted in driver partner deactivation.”

A representative for Viewswagen tells Business Insider, that while the company is glad Uber has finally addressed the in-service advertising program, it disagrees that the ads would take away from the passenger experience.

“Viewswagen shares the goal to make a passenger’s trip as comfortable as possible, however we are a startup built to make driver’s live better,” the company’s CEO said. “We believe that passengers won’t mind the ads, as long as they know drivers are getting paid a living wage from multiple sources. Secondly, we believe that passengers wont view the ads as intrusive if they are relevant to that person’s trip.”

Uber says it will ‘discourage’ its drivers from earing extra cash by placing ads in their cars [Business Insider]

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.