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Artificial Surge Theory

Native Austinite

Active Member
Now that Drivers have the ear of the media, its good to keep the info flowing. One thing that media loves to report is fraud lol.

Now, we all know that that UBERs surges are a bunch of BS. It would be hard to prove though, since we don't have access to UBERs servers.

We can look at the basic principle behind the surges, the law of supply and demand. UBER is saying because the supply of "rides" is lower than the demand for "rides" price must go up.

If this was a real ratio, it would include all "rides" available in the city...not just UBER. UBERs model acts as if it has a monopoly, that it is the only source of "rides" in the city.

There are "rides" available outside of UBER, such as lyft, taxi, or even busses. In other words, there is a supply of "rides" that UBER does not calculate into its surge ratio. The true supply of "rides" being higher than what UBER is acknowledging is, in my opinion, fraudulent.

So long as UBER does not include all "rides" in the supply side, their surges will always be false, by definition.

Using false numbers to gouge Riders...bad UBER!
 

Nate R

Well-Known Member
I was on south Congress last night during 3x surge and not a single Uber ping. For the surge to be that high, based on how Uber explains surge pricing, there had to have been a ton of riders and barely any drivers in that area. Surge fail!
 

Killeen Ubur

Well-Known Member
I was on south Congress last night during 3x surge and not a single Uber ping. For the surge to be that high, based on how Uber explains surge pricing, there had to have been a ton of riders and barely any drivers in that area. Surge fail!
You fell for the oldest trick in the book Uber use's to move drivers around the city were needed with fake surges...you know better now
 

Killeen Ubur

Well-Known Member
Now that Drivers have the ear of the media, its good to keep the info flowing. One thing that media loves to report is fraud lol.

Now, we all know that that UBERs surges are a bunch of BS. It would be hard to prove though, since we don't have access to UBERs servers.

We can look at the basic principle behind the surges, the law of supply and demand. UBER is saying because the supply of "rides" is lower than the demand for "rides" price must go up.

If this was a real ratio, it would include all "rides" available in the city...not just UBER. UBERs model acts as if it has a monopoly, that it is the only source of "rides" in the city.

There are "rides" available outside of UBER, such as lyft, taxi, or even busses. In other words, there is a supply of "rides" that UBER does not calculate into its surge ratio. The true supply of "rides" being higher than what UBER is acknowledging is, in my opinion, fraudulent.

So long as UBER does not include all "rides" in the supply side, their surges will always be false, by definition.

Using false numbers to gouge Riders...bad UBER!
What are you taking about, Uber ONLY WORRY'S ABOUT UBER RIDERS. The surge is when the demand for rides is higher then the number of drivers....

the price go's up......simple
 

Nate R

Well-Known Member
I would think there were a ton of riders and not so many drivers to be at 3.5x surge.
 

ATX 22

Well-Known Member
Killeen Uber, I was sitting still in the same surge zone as NateR.
I never chase surge, because I do know better. I sat for 14 minutes and took screen shots as it went from 2.5 to 3.5 back down to 1.7 at 11:12pm. I was pinged at 11:13, screen still bright red and reading 1.7x. I was not paid surge rate for the ride, and according to the CSR, there was no surge as I accepted the request. I am, of course, disputing that with the CSR's right now.
 

ATX 22

Well-Known Member
J (Uber)

Aug 16, 05:08

Hi J,

Thanks for writing in. Sorry to hear about the confusion surrounding your fare here. I’m happy to explain.

Surge occurs differently throughout the city and changes in real time, depending on the demand in particular areas. I took a look, and during this trip, the area was not surging when you hit “accept trip.”

We’ll do our best to make you aware of when and where surge is likely to be happening, but we can never predict it 100%.

Please let me know if I can help with anything else.

J
_______________________________________


My reply


Aug 16, 08:22

Really? That's how you want to start? I was sitting in a surging area for over 10 minutes without a ride request, I have 10 minutes worth of screen shots of the areas surging along with the amounts of surge. The request screen said it was a 1.7x, unfortunately I can't get a screen shot of the request screen while I am accepting the request.
I think you should recheck at the very least.
______________________________________

Z (Uber)

Aug 16, 21:42

Hey Jay,

Happy to step in and clear this up for you.

It looks like at the time that you accepted this trip request there was no surge going on in this area.

I apologize for this inconvenience. In the future watch out for text messages from us alerting you about surge pricing in your area. You can also find info about surge pricing by looking for the surge icon in the vehicle selector.

If you have anymore questions about surge pricing please let me know.

I also see you have a 4.89 rating and a 90% acceptance over 489 trips! I appreciate your great partnership with Uber.

Best,

Z

I know what my rating is, how is that pertinent?
_____________________________________
My next response:


You've stepped in, but have failed to clear up anything. I had plenty of time to get screen shots while I was sitting in a surging area with no ride requests for 13 minutes. This shot was taken less than 30 seconds prior to my acceptance of the request in question. I am the blue dot, clearly sitting within the surge zone south of the Colorado River.
Look, it was a really short ride, but it just appears that the Uber - driver partnership is always very one sided in favor of Uber.
This is contributing to the high driver turnover rate, along with unwarranted rate drops and onboarding more drivers than are needed. Vehicle standards have been lowered, and the riders are seeing a drop off in the quality of service as well. With the current rates, I average well under the current minimum wage standards set forth by the federal government, so it's important to me that I receive every penny that's due to me.
If my partnership efforts are so highly appreciated, why is it I feel like I get dumped on by Uber at every turn?

2015-08-17 10.49.15.png


Still waiting for their next response.
 

Toddal

Active Member
I've recently noticed that multiple times I am "conveniently" in that little blank area with surges either on all four sides of me or on all three. Like I am on a shitty little island. Hmmmm.....trying to get me to drive to the surge areas maybe??

Also, I love it where the rep says that they send you texts on surges and you should look out for those for the best information. Hmmmm....you mean the texts are going to be more accurate than the @@@@ing Map I am looking right at??? Makes absolutely no sense.
 

Stratos

Well-Known Member
I've recently noticed that multiple times I am "conveniently" in that little blank area with surges either on all four sides of me or on all three. Like I am on a shitty little island. Hmmmm.....trying to get me to drive to the surge areas maybe??

Also, I love it where the rep says that they send you texts on surges and you should look out for those for the best information. Hmmmm....you mean the texts are going to be more accurate than the @@@@ing Map I am looking right at??? Makes absolutely no sense.
Not just that but by sending a text you will have to find a spot to pull over and park to read the Text or hope for a red light. Their practices seem to encourage us to waste time or break the law.
 

Uberest

Well-Known Member
I have said this before, but I think the surges are not completely portrayed in real time. Rather, I believe they attempt to predict where drivers will be needed based on historical usage patterns of both riders (previous customers) in the time period and drivers who typically are in the area during the time period. I do not think the surge maps are a simple calculation of instantaneous supply and demand. For one thing, real time demand is only known when the pax requests a ride. But Uber servers do know how many drivers there are in an area relative to probably future rider demand. They don't know exactly how many riders will request a ride at X time in X area. Instead, I believe they do the best they can to predict and estimate.

What this means is that you can sit in a surge area and not receive a ping. I have also experienced this. No ping means, that despite the surge pricing there are enough drivers for the available instantaneous rider demand.

Also a factor of course is that riders are given the option to be notified when the surge pricing is no longer in effect.

Uber, as a rational business, is ***attempting to moderate supply and demand*** by use of pricing, in order to have the best service at the best price for riders. They do this by predictive surge pricing, and by offering riders opportunity to ride later...when demand presumably subsides.

No one has told me these things...its just what I would do if I was an Uberczar.
 

ATX 22

Well-Known Member
Uber is anything but a rational business.

If supply and demand were truly what they were basing the model off of, then there wouldn't be nonstop ads still recruiting drivers in the Austin market.
This means that requests made during a surge period are fraudulent price gouging, especially in light of the fact that a number of drivers are already in the area not receiving requests. The heat maps are designed to predict potential need. In other words, Uber wants to manipulate where cars are, and keep them distributed evenly throughout the city. I never chase the different colors, nor do I chase surge pricing, but when I am clearly sitting within a surging zone and get a request from within the surge zone, I expect to be receiving surge rates.
 

Uberest

Well-Known Member
It is at least unethical, if not fraudulent, to be within a surge area, receive a ping from a rider in the surge area, but not receive surge rates.

Some posters have noted that the rider app may show "no surge" when the driver's app shows "surge" and one possible explanation is "delay" in sync. Although anything is possible, I doubt Uber is intentionally "stealing" the surge rates. They profit when rider pays a surge rate as we do at least they should.

But I do agree, its disheartening to be a good sheep, go to the surge area, and not receive a surge ping. I have done this once or twice but not anymore..... I am relying more on my own knowledge of where riders are likely to be based on commuting patterns and events during the time periods I am online.

One other note, once I was sitting outside a local mall, showing my son the Uber partner app. There was no surge anywhere. No yellow, all white. Just for grins, we go online. PING!!! cancel quickly. PING!! cancel quickly. PING!! cancel quickly and go off line quickly. It was really a surprise!!!!!!! So sometimes there can be high instantaneous demand but no surge pricing.
 

BramasoleATX

Well-Known Member
You will know if it is a surge at that instant when the request ping comes in and there will be a little 1.7X or 2.4x there on the bottom right on the Accept trip screen. If I am in a surge area and it does not show a surge on the incoming ping I just pass on that trip and wait for another.
 

ATX 22

Well-Known Member
My ride request at 11:13 said 1.7x, I checked before accepting. Now uber says it wasn't surging. Grrrr!
 

BigPoppa

New Member
I noticed a very high surge rate this past weekend. It had all of the downtown area in dark orange at 5.3x this extended all the way north to 183. I thought it was strange, so I looked again and sure enough that was the case. As I was looking at it, I got a ping about a mile north of where I was. Pick up was Yellow Rose. The trip info did not indicate surge but I know what I saw.

After the trip, I emailed "support" with the details asking them to adjust the rate. Through a couple of email exchanges, I learned something about surge.

Per Uber "Support", surge is based solely on the exact location of the rider. Just because the area you/they are in is lit up with a surge indicator does not mean the rider's exact location is surging.

Seems misleading at best but that is the impression I am getting from my experiences with Uber.
 
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