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Brief Published: 2 Mar 2016

UberMoto: Bike Taxis on Demand

Uber has launched its first motorcycle taxi service in Thailand

International ride-sharing app Uber is trialling a motorcycle taxi service in Bangkok, Thailand.

Since February 24, Uber users have been able to order a bike, rather than a car, to cut through the Thai capital's notorious traffic, which creeps along at an average of just seven miles per hour during peak times.

Uber expects demand for the UberMoto service to be high – motorcycles are a popular and inexpensive form of transport in southeast Asia, and entry costs are lower than those for cars for potential drivers. The UberMoto service will charge a base rate of just under $0.30, plus $0.10 per kilometre and two cents a minute – payable by cash or card.

The company continues to experiment with alternative transport options in developing countries. Last year, its auto-rickshaw service (providing small, three-wheeled vehicles) in India failed just eight months after its launch.

Uber's wider success, however, is part of the emergence of high-tech, flexible transport services that compete with private car ownership – see Urban Transport Revs Up for more. For the latest on the narrowing gap between our cars and mobile devices, see CES 2016: Automotive.