One way or the other ridesharing service Uber always finds itself in the news, whether its due to protests in a country where it’s trying to operate or the behaviour of some driver. Yesterday a report claimed that Uber shows “ghost cars” to users in its app to give the impression that a large number of cars are available for them to catch a ride on even when users are given long waiting periods for requested rides. Uber is denying that it does this.


Researchers from the Data & Society think tank claimed that the Uber app showed cars present in a user’s locality even when there were none. A customer support representative from the company was also quoted as saying that “this is not a representation of the exact numbers of drivers or their location.”

A spokesperson for Uber tells the Guardian that it is the company’s goal to ensure that the number of cars and their location is “as accurate as possible in real time.”

It is further explained that it might seem this way partly due to latency, the smartphone pings Uber’s server which sends back real-time location data and it makes sense that it would have latency issues.

The spokesperson also said that to avoid cluttering the screen the app only shows nearest eight cars and that in some reasons the specific location of individual cars might not be disclosed until the ride is requested to “protect the safety of drivers.”

Filed in Transportation. Read more about and .

Related Articles on Ubergizmo