Sony Is Launching Japanese Ride-Hailing Service As Uber Ponders Similar Action

Dara Khosrowshahi CEO of Uber

Adam Galica | CNBC

But its new chief executive, Dara Khosrowshahi, has struck a more conciliatory tone after a string of controversies that emerged under the former CEO, Travis Kalanick. "But that product hasn't kept up with technological change".

The CEO said he sees the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo as a good opportunity to boost the company's business, noting that Japan is a huge taxi market.

Uber is planning to team up with local taxi provider - Daiichi Koutsu Sangyo to provide a taxi platform; while Toyota recently invested a large sum of money into JapanTaxi app and is also working on its own AI taxi system. The joint venture will also create a new digital payment service, the report said.

Sony Corporation said today that it will fabricate an AI-based ride-hailing framework in Japan in organization with five taxi organizations. Didi plans to stick to taxi-hailing in Japan for now as well. "It's clear to me that we need to come in with partnership in mind, and in particular a partnership with the taxi industry here, which actually has a very, very strong product", Khosrowshahi said, according to Bloomberg. He was speaking with Roos, a co-founding partner at Geodesic Capital, an Uber investor. The major move is an indication of less combative approach taken by the company towards the local authorities. "We will be working closely with them through this hard transition", Uber said.

The services developed will be offered to all platforms available to taxi operators that wish to participate across Japan. But Uber saw four listless years in Japan, achieving less than 1 percent of monthly rides in Tokyo, the world's largest single cab market.

A blog post has been released by the company, which writes about the recently announced move that it is not yet cleared that how will their service be integrated in the form of transport model now existing since it has launched in the transport industry three years ago.

Sony's announcement adds another player to the already fiercely competitive Japanese taxi app market.

This month, SoftBank Group and China's Didi Chuxing said they would roll out a venture in Japan this year to provide matching services. "If you're going to do business with SoftBank, you have to get used to that they do business with your competition", he said.

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