Traffic

Uber, a Text-Message Car Service, Might Come to Miami

Sick of strutting your stuff on the street corner while trying to hail a cab? Uber, a tech-savvy car service spreading across the country, has an alternative. Simply launch the app on your smartphone, request a car, track it on a map as it makes its way, and get in the black luxury car when it arrives. Your bill, which includes a preset tip, is charged directly to your credit card.

Because the service falls somewhere between a traditional taxi and a limousine, Uber is currently illegal in Miami-Dade County, but that might change soon.

The company announced on its blog that Commissioner Audrey Edmonson has introduced legislation to the Miami-Dade County Commission that would eliminate many of the rules that forbid Uber from entering the market.

Miami-Dade has a lot of regulations that limit the operation of non-taxi car services, and requires them to charge a price of $70 even for just a one-stop ride. Edmonson's proposal would eliminate much of those regulations.

Uber, which uses cars such as BMWs and Cadillacs, usually charges about 45 to 75 percent more than a taxi, a price they've found customers who appreciate the convenience and luxury are willing to pay. The company is experimenting with lower-priced services in some cities to compete directly with traditional cabs, but as the company points out, Edmonson's proposals would let the company offer only its higher-end services in Miami-Dade.

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Kyle Munzenrieder