Beginning today, Uber will offer free Wi-Fi through Labor Day in Uber Black Car vehicles throughout the Philadelphia area, courtesy of Google. The goal is to attract people who want to work while traveling.
Uber has made the feature easy to use for those already familiar with its app interface. To request a car featuring uberWIFI, users have to open the app, slide the Wi-Fi button at the bottom of the screen, then request a Black Car. This option will provide individuals with a luxury vehicle that can seat up to four people. Once they hop in, they can connect to the Wi-Fi network for free and begin working — or checking their Facebook.
Google Apps for Business is a sponsor of the new program, and Uber was quick to mention on its blog that accessing features like Gmail and Google Docs will be a breeze with its Wi-Fi.
Google Ventures led Uber’s financing round in August 2013 that brought in $258 million. Since then, Google Maps has been integrated into Uber to enhance the user experience. David Drummond, Google’s SVP of Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer, also joined the executive board following the round of funding. So it looks like the relationship between Google and Uber is strong.
Uber says that uberWIFI is still in the experimental stage and that users can expect spotty Wi-Fi connectivity. Similarly, it may be tough to get a Black Car with Wi-Fi during peak hours when they are in demand.
However, it’s unlikely that slow Wi-Fi will impede Uber’s success. On June 6, the company announced the end of a financing round that marked $1.2 billion in primary capital.