Google is slowly making its way into the carpooling business, as it launches a pilot project for commuters in Israel, the media reported on Monday.
The project was developed by the crew behind Waze, a traffic and mapping app which Google bought back in 2013 for more than £600 million.
Waze will provide the mapping and traffic data, while actual rides will be hailed with a new app called RideWith, The Verge writes in a report, citing Israe'ls Haaretz.
The service will connect passengers with nearby drivers headed to and from similar locations, however it will differ from what Uber has to offer. The biggest difference is that drivers won't be able to make a living out of it – they will be limited at two rides a day. They will aslo receive only a small payment from passengers based on distance traveled and a nominal car maintenance fee.
Each journey can be paid for via the app with Google collecting 15 percent of the fee, reports Haaretz.
Google will kickstart its project in Tel Aviv, Ra’anana, and Herzliya with the company reportedly planning to expand the pilot to other parts of Israel if initial tests are a success.
"We're conducting a small, private beta test in the greater Tel Aviv area for a carpool concept, but we have nothing further to announce at this time," Waze told Reuters of its foray into the increasingly competitive field of ride-sharing.
According to Reuters, RideWith will use Waze to learn the routes drivers take and match them with passengers going in the same directions.