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UK: Uber scores victory over London’s black cabs

 |  October 18, 2015

Uber has just scored a rare victory in one of its largest European markets.

London’s High Court ruled Friday that Uber’s app is not a taximeter, and that the service has been operating legally since it launched in the city in 2012.

The use of meters to calculate fares is reserved for London’s black cab drivers. Their representatives — the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association — had asked the court to ban the app.

But High Court judge Justice Ouseley said that a driver’s smartphone along with the app was not the same as a fare-calculating device.

“A taximeter…does not include a device that receives GPS signals in the course of a journey, and forwards GPS data to a server located outside of the vehicle,” he concluded.

The taxi drivers association said it would appeal to the Supreme Court.

“The law really is an ass. [The app] uses time & distance to calculate fare and it’s not a meter?” the association tweeted.

Jo Bertram, Uber’s general manager for the UK, Ireland and Nordics, hailed the ruling as “great news for Londoners and a victory for common sense.”

Full content: The New York Times

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