Google-owned maps app Waze is testing a new carpooling service in California’s Bay Area that will let users from certain companies hitch rides to work together.
Waze Carpool is currently invite-only for people who work at a handful of companies including Adobe and, unsurprisingly, Google, and the service automatically pairs people to share rides based on their home and work addresses, as well as their ideal departure time.
Because Waze Carpool aims to cut down on the Bay Area’s hellish rush hour traffic, the service will only be available during morning and evening commute hours.
The service looks a lot like the carpooling features offered by ride-hailing apps Lyft and Uber. The big difference, however, is that riders and drivers will only exchange enough money to cover gas — Waze drivers won’t be making an income like they could on Uber or Lyft.
When Waze piloted a similar program in Israel, it took a 15% cut of the amount riders paid drivers, but it won’t take a cut of California transactions, at least for now.
However, the new carpool feature will still help Waze collect lots of data about commute patterns, which might come in handy to parent company Google as it moves ahead with its self-driving car efforts.
Two new Waze apps, one for riders and one for drivers, will handle all the coordination, communication and payment.
Here’s the company’s video on the feature:
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