Major tech companies like Amazon (AMZN) and Google (GOOG) have grown their original offerings (computers and a search engine, respectively) into whole suites of products. These companies now offer everything from cloud storage to streaming products, wearable tech, and much more. A report from Consumer Affairs now suggests that Uber is diversifying its products as well. Uber's latest offering is called Uber Cash, and it acts as a funding hub to allow consumers to make payments for all of Uber's products and services from a single account.
Uber Cash as a Launchpad
Uber began life as a rideshare service benefiting from the growing gig economy. Since those first offerings, it has since grown to include bike sharing, food delivery, a credit card, air transportation, and more. With the ever-expanding list of Uber products, the company's plans to launch Uber Cash are perhaps unsurprising; certainly part of the idea behind the new service is to encourage users to consolidate their efforts and use more Uber products.
After a customer funds their Uber Cash account, they can use it to pay for many different products across the Uber ecosystem. Besides the basics like ridesharing, deliveries, and scooters, Uber Cash users will also be able to purchase gift cards.
Borrowing an Existing Idea
Already, Uber Cash has drawn some criticism from those who point out its similarities to Amazon's cash back rewards. However, just because the Uber Cash app may not be the most original idea does not necessarily mean that it isn't a good one. PaymentsSource offers that, "by creating an ecosystem for users to load, redeem and pay for various services with the app, Uber has created a veritable digital wallet with the opportunity to build a war chest of stored-value cash."
Uber Cash could even have the same impact on Uber's brand that Amazon Prime did for the retailer. By "getting consumers into its system for one perk...and then piling on incentives and services to keep them engaged," PaymentsSource suggests that Uber may quickly clench the market for a variety of different products and services.
That's not to say that Uber is without competition. Indeed, the company has entered into a number of highly competitive and crowded spaces. Food delivery services have been growing at an immense pace, and Uber Eats continues to go up against services from companies like Grubhub and Amazon. Scooter services are expanding across the country as well. Will Uber Cash be enough to draw customers away from rivals in these and other areas?