In its newest localization efforts, Uber has partnered with Bharti Airtel, an Indian telecom company, to provide free in-car WiFi for riders in India. This partnership also offers discounted phone plans for drivers and allows them to accept payments through Airtel Money, Bharti’s own digital payment system. Usually struggling with patchy mobile internet coverage and costly mobile plans, users in India (and other developing countries) will no doubt welcome this new offer.
What Brands Can Do
Although unlikely to be introduced in the US any time soon, Uber’s new partnership in India does point to a future where on-demand rides come with their own Wi-Fi offers, which would naturally open up new in-car advertising and targeting opportunities for brands to go along for the ride.
Source: New York Times
Shots fired, again! Joining the blaming game that was just played by Netflix, YouTube is now publicly shaming the internet service providers for the low streaming speed experienced by some users. Now when your buffering speed is less than optimal, a blue notification bar pops up under the video that directs you to a comparison page between other ISPs in your area, which ranks providers based on the average speed they provide for their customers on YouTube.
The message is loud and clear: ISPs are responsible for whether your video playback is smooth. As the heat between OTT service companies and ISPs continues to rise, especially with the debate over net neutrality caught in recent media spotlight, Google, along with other internet-based companies, is no doubt working this user-experience angle as a subtle PR campaign. The effectiveness of this campaign, however, remains to be seen.
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