Uber launches new restaurant app, UberEats

By Shawn Price   |   March 25, 2016 at 1:15 AM

NEW YORK, March 25 (UPI) -- Uber will launch its standalone app, UberEats in 10 U.S. cities this month while adding bike couriers and restaurant partnerships to its growing legion of drivers.

The company will be jumping into an already highly competitive, $15.3 billion-a-year food delivery business against companies like Grubhub, Seamless, and Yelp's Eat24, not to mention smaller, more local companies.

UberEats will be partnering with more than 100 restaurants in each of the cities where the app is in use. Like Uber, UberEats will allow the user to track where your food is, either in a car or on a bike, on a live map. If they are already an Uber user, their payment information is transferred over.

The new service expands on the earlier form of UberEats and allows customers to generally order from a restaurant's full menu.

Uber also promises to get your food to you in an hour, but speed will be essential to keep up with competition.

"It's all about speed, quality and price," Kevin Kopelman, senior analyst with research firm Cowen and Co. said. "The faster you can get the deliveries done, the cheaper you can make it for customers because it means you can more effectively use delivery peoples' time and they can do more delivery drops per hour." And it will help avoid the anger of hungry customers.

Toronto and Los Angeles users of UberEats will have to pay a $5 delivery charge. But if you are in one of the new launch cities -- New York, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Austin, Seattle, Chicago, Los Angeles or San Francisco -- you're in luck. Delivery is still free.

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