npr:

Uber has shaken up what it takes to get from point A to point B in cities across the country with a simple premise: If you need a ride, a driver nearby could pick you up within minutes.

Behind that idea is an algorithm, which promises to keep supply and demand in constant balance, encouraging drivers toward busy areas and tempering customer requests by increasing the price of each ride. It’s calledsurge pricing.

Those who have used Uber know that surge pricing is a temperamental beast. It changes quickly, varies seemingly unpredictably and has gotten heat fromconsumers, regulators and even drivers themselves. Uber says without surge pricing, the whole premise of a ride in minutes falls apart when there’s a crush of demand.

But how exactly does Uber’s algorithm work? The company doesn’t say. A team of researchers at Northeastern University decided to find out by doing what they call “algorythmic auditing.”

They found that for customers, it pays to be patient — or to walk a few blocks to a less crowded area.

Uber Surge Price? Research Says Walk A Few Blocks, Wait A Few Minutes

Images: Courtesy of Christo Wilson


Bless me with your wisdom.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s