Uber Eats will now offer food to clients in the most unexpected places. According to a Uber spokesperson, the “Dine-in” function of the food delivery and pick-up app is now being pilot-tested in Dallas, Austin, Phoenix and San Diego.
The service efficiently eliminates the need for delivery drivers that the tech startup has had a litigious connection with for a long time. In its pre-IPO filing, Uber recognized that if they classified drivers as staff rather than contractors, their business model would be adversely affected.
The feature enables more restaurants to join the platform and provides opportunities for diners to experience restaurants that do not offer takeout.
“When you place an order through the Eats app and go to the restaurant to collect it, then you can choose to sit down in the restaurant to consume your meal,” Uber said in a FAQ.
Diners for the service are not charged. Restaurants instead pay a premium that differs from market to market. Through the app, customers can tip restaurant staff. A Uber spokesperson informed CBS MoneyWatch that the feature is intended to allow restaurants to concentrate on what they are best at making excellent food and offering top-notch customer service.
“It’s another service that [Uber] can offer these restaurant owners — also customers — that’s potentially a valuable service to them, Obviously, the drivers aren’t necessary, but of course they might bring those people to the restaurants, and Uber could create more demand there.” Anand Sanwal, CEO of CB Insights, told CBS MoneyWatch.
In 2018, Uber lost $3 billion and in the first quarter of 2019 they lost $1 billion more. The company hopes to assist prevent the losses by cross-promoting Eats with its standard service.