Lyft and Uber launch programs to cater to seniors – LA Times

Uber and Lyft spent the last four years cornering the millennial market. Now they’re going after a new demographic: senior citizens. Both ride-hailing companies recently announced partnerships with service providers that allow older customers to book rides through a phone operator, bypassing smartphone apps entirely.

Source: Lyft and Uber launch programs to cater to seniors – LA Times

Google Takes on Uber With New Ride-Share Service – WSJ

Google is moving onto Uber Technologies Inc.’s turf with its own ride-sharing service in San Francisco that would help commuters carpool at far cheaper rates, according to a person familiar with the matter, jumping into a booming but fiercely competitive market.

Source: Google Takes on Uber With New Ride-Share Service – WSJ

All washed up: On-demand laundry startup Washio closes its doors – CNET

Washio, an on-demand laundry startup that launched in 2013 and quickly spread to New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Oakland and Washington D.C. Unfortunately, Washio posted a letter to its site on August 29 saying it was closing its doors effective immediately.

Source: All washed up: On-demand laundry startup Washio closes its doors – CNET

Explosion of Gig Economy Means There’s an App for Juggling Jobs – Bloomberg

Snagajob charges employers for the number of clicks, applicants, interviews and hires it lines up. It also sells annual subscriptions for use of its hiring software. Harrison, 53, declines to specify revenue but says Snagajob is breaking even. In February, the startup raised $100 million to develop new features and fund acquisitions.

Source: Explosion of Gig Economy Means There’s an App for Juggling Jobs – Bloomberg

Tech Is Going to Make the Gig Economy Happen Whether You Want It or Not

But just because the gig economy “makes sense” doesn’t mean it works. Shady pricing has placed an entire subset of on-demand apps like Postmates and DoorDash, which rely on couriers, under scrutiny for making offerings seem more affordable than they really are. On-demand startups are predicated on the idea of becoming a habit, not a luxury.

Source: Tech Is Going to Make the Gig Economy Happen Whether You Want It or Not

Uber and Alphabet’s Rivalry Heats Up as Director Chooses Sides – The New York Times

David Drummond, a longtime executive at Alphabet and a director at Uber, recently stepped down from the ride-hailing company’s board, Uber said on Monday. Mr. Drummond had served on Uber’s board for the last three years.

Source: Uber and Alphabet’s Rivalry Heats Up as Director Chooses Sides – The New York Times

Meet the People Who Power The On-Demand Economy

We wanted to hear their challenges, goals and stories. So we talked to them, and we worked with a local Chicago illustrator to create comic strips inspired by experiences that on-demand workers have had on the job. (They’re pretty wacky, to be honest.)

Source: Meet the People Who Power The On-Demand Economy

Amazon Tests 30-Hour Work Week

As I mentioned in last week’s wrap-up posting, it was an important week in the shift from on-demand-and-on-your-own commodity services to personal and community-supporting engagement through on-demand services. Amazon is trying the first steps to flex work in distributed technical and logistics organization.

The Washington Post reports that Amazon is launching technical teams whose workers will only clock in for 30 hours a week. While plenty of employees at Amazon are part-time, the novelty here is that the teams are entirely made up of workers on a reduced schedule, including managers. The teams’ members will receive the same benefits as full-time employees, and 75% of a 40-hour workers’ pay.

Source: Amazon Tests 30-Hour Work Week

Nutrition startup PlateJoy partners with Instacart in Dallas – Dallas Business Journal

Bognet added that PlateJoy chose to partner with Instacart over other grocery services like Shipt and Amazon Prime because of Instacart’s national reach. The company delivers to roughly 25 regions across the country, and PlateJoy plans to extend its partnership to all of Instacart’s service areas by the end of 2016.

Source: Nutrition startup PlateJoy partners with Instacart in Dallas – Dallas Business Journal

Uber suspends services in Abu Dhabi

The company said its operations in nearby Dubai continued as normal.

The National newspaper said the suspension came after the arrest of some 50 drivers.

Source: Uber suspends services in Abu Dhabi