There is now a separate app which you would need to download to use Uber in China as the current one which is in use around the world stops working there. This move came after Didi, the Chinese rival of Uber, took over the latter in a multibillion-dollar deal after a fierce competition between the two led to a deal in August.
The Chinese Uber app doesn’t work in any other language other than Mandarin and is not able to process and accept foreign credit cards. Didi’s move to make another app with different features signifies its focus on tapping the huge Chinese internal market while ignoring the rather small amount of foreigners that visit the nation around the year.
The takeover would make Uber China available in over 400 cities around China, compared to the meager 60 cities it was previously operating in when it was owned by Uber. Didi also highlighted major changes that now accompany the app like linking it with WeChat, the Chinese equivalent of Whatsapp.
Didi also talked about making an English version of the new app by next year and also revealed plans on adding online payment methods that have more acceptability around the globe. The move not only made it difficult for foreigners trying to use the service when they are visiting China, but the Chinese travelers would face a similar difficulty if they aim to travel to the US till there is a more user-friendly version.
Uber’s pledge might need to re-envision its pledge to its global consumer base which currently reads “if a city you visit has Uber, you can request rides there just like you would back home.” As Uber China has added a whole new dimension by providing the first such instance when Uber has been “nationalized” according to the country it operates in, which might lead to others following suit and de-fanging the core vantage point which has made Uber so successful around the globe.