Uber is tough, really, really tough. It's the hardened General Patton of app-based ride sharing services, while Lyft is... General MacArthur? Both companies are fighting the taxi medallion-owning establishment, cabbies protesting in France, a backlash from New York's Mayor DeBlasio, and now half of South Florida. Broward County is pushing them out, a driver was arrested in Key West for driving an 'unlicensed vehicle for hire,' where there isn't even Uber service yet, and now as they plan their next moves toward full legalization, Uber is ensconcing itself down here pretty much permanently, ready for D-Day.
They have a new Miami headquarters in a fancy Brickell office building as well as an initiative to hire* ten thousand drivers from the inner-city and disenfranchised neighborhoods of Miami-Dade and Palm Beach. It's a high-stakes game of the survival of their business and of technological progress. Ten years ago who would have thought passions could run so high, both for and against what is essentially a little bit of code on a phone and a service that's somewhere between hitchhiking and your own stretch limo?
UPDATE: Uber has informed Curbed Miami that they are not actually hiring drivers, but 'partnering' with them as independent contractors. The term 'small business owners' was also used.
· Uber recruiting initiative heads to South Florida [Miami Herald]
· Uber coverage [Curbed Miami]