Uber fans, rejoice! The app isn't a law-breaker in the UK

Uber fans, rejoice! The app isn't a law breaker in the UK
Uber fans, rejoice! The app isn't a law breaker in the UK

Uber has won its long-running battle with licensed cab drivers, after a high-court ruling deemed the taxi-hailing app completely legal.

London's transport authority, TFL, had brought the case to the high court to seek clarification over whether Uber's service, which uses GPS and online payments to book taxi cabs, was actually being used as a 'meter'.

If this turned out to be the case, then it would be illegal as only licensed cab drivers were allowed to use this technology.

Hans-free Uber

Even though the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association and London Private Hire Car Association were pushing for the app to be banned, Lord Justice Ouseley decided otherwise.

He noted in convoluted legal speak: "A taximeter‎, for the purposes of section 11 of the Private Hire Vehicles Act 1998 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, which server calculates a fare that is partially or wholly determined by reference to distance travelled and time taken and sends the fare information back to the device."

In short: Uber, keep doing what you are doing and all other licensed taxi drivers can pipe down.

Uber, unsurprisingly, is happy about the judgement and is hoping that it will stop other proposed new regulations that would stymie the service from happening.

"Now the high court has ruled in favour of new technology, we hope Transport for London will think again on their bureaucratic proposals for apps like Uber," said Uber's Jo Bertram.

"Compulsory five-minute waits and banning ride-sharing would be bad for riders and drivers. These plans make no sense."

Via the Guardian

Marc Chacksfield

Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, Shortlist.com at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.