Ride-Hailing Startup Juno Is Getting Ready to Compete With Uber, Aiming A Better Relationship With Drivers

February 19
4:52 AM 2016

A ride-sharing startup Juno is aiming to compete with Uber as it claims to have multiple capabilities that will differentiate it from other similar services. So far, Juno had only launched in stealth mode in New York City.

According to Forbes, it is likely that the startup's biggest differentiator from other ride-sharing services, especially Uber, to be driver relations. "At the heart of Juno is a belief that it's time for ride sharing service that treated drivers right. It's time for an ethical, socially responsible ride-sharing service," Juno founder Marco explained the core of his business. Previously, Marco cofounded messaging app Viber bought by Rakuten for $900 million in 2014.

Uber, on the other hand, has been subjected to a number of protests and disappointments from its drivers. Uber drivers had undergone a drop in their pay rate over the last few years as the company slash prices. According to the New York Post, more than 75,000 New Yorkers have signed up for the Uber app after the company slashed its prices as the company argued that drivers actually make more money with the price cut because they spend less time waiting for fares as demands rise. However, many other drivers demanded that the company restore the old fares and cut commission from 20-25 percent to 10 percent so that drivers could earn more.

On its website, Juno stated that the startup would only take commission from drivers for as low as 10 percent. Also, the company has reserved 50 percent of its founding shares for drivers. Juno is yet to fully operate and is on the data-gathering testing phase. As for now, the startup is offering $25 per week for Uber drivers to take part in its beta testing phase. Uber drivers can participate in the program by carrying Juno's device while driving their normal routes. Marco explained that the data gathered in this process will help them the opportunity to understand patterns, traffic behavior, activity hours and other useful information.

Other report revealed that even though the app had just been launched in stealth mode, Juno already has a team of engineers in Marco's home country, Israel. It's also reported that the startup has leased 10,000 square feet at 1 World Trade Center in New York.

Juno is preparing itself to enter the competition of ride-hailing companies, starting with New York City, where such services are in high demand. Now launched in stealth mode, the startup aims to form a positive relationship with drivers, as well as assuring drivers would be paid well. 

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