Rideshare company Lyft is changing its data and search location provider, which until now was powered by Google. Lyft will now use Here rather. Lyft says the change will mean a better place and address search database as well as more accurate expected arrival times, two important things for a rideshare business to be successful.
“Over the past six months, we’ve worked with Lyft to implement and test our robust destination catalog that helps passengers get to more destinations in North American cities. Our services now enrich the Lyft network, at the forefront of innovation in the carpooling industry. said Here CEO Edzard Overbeek.
There may be other motivations for the change. According to Lyft ridesharing manager Ashwin Raj, the change “will improve the efficiency of our market,” but the press release also explicitly mentions the privacy of user data.
Lyft also has a new driverless technology partner. In the past, the company has tried to develop internal capacity, but in April, Lyft has sold its in-house autonomous driving division to a subsidiary of Toyota.
However, working with external autonomous driving partners seems to be going better, as Lyft provides the ridesharing component necessary to find people to drive in robotaxis developed by other companies. Lyft has worked with active and Movement in Las Vegas, with plans to launch a robotaxi service using electric Hyundai Ioniq 5s in the city in 2023. And Lyft has helped Waymo Begins Real Business Operations in Arizona.
From now on, Lyft will partner with Argo AI, the autonomous driving company with large investments of Ford and Volkswagen. Lyft gets a 2.5% stake in Argo and, along with Argo and Ford, will begin adding robots (with security drivers) to its network in Miami later this year and in Austin, Texas, in 2021.