Aurélien Fleurot, edited by Manon Fossat
3:40 p.m., 05 December 2021, modified at
3:40 p.m., 05 December 2021
Six years ago, the Uber platform arrived in France to revolutionize our journeys with fast, inexpensive trips booked via a smartphone. Zaki, one of the pioneers of the application in Paris, remembered his beginnings at the microphone of Europe 1. And he does not regret having embarked on the adventure.
It was ten years ago. An American platform offering customers to book a ride via an application landed in France. A completely commonplace service today but a revolution at the time, especially for taxis. Uber has arrived in France since 2011 and claims 350 million trips. Often criticized, the platform has despite everything changed the way of getting around the city, with fast, inexpensive races booked via a smartphone. And it has also enabled drivers to find new customers. Zaki is one of the pioneers of the application in Paris. Europe 1 met him.
“It was extraordinary”
In 2011, Zaki started working as a private driver. In his company, Service Prestige, arrive a few Americans who are looking for volunteers to test a new service. Among them, a certain Travis Kalanick, co-founder of Uber. Very quickly, Zaki realizes that this application will upset his profession. “I was one of the very first Uber drivers so we were shown how to use the app and then we tested it in the field. My first run was something quite extraordinary: through the phone, we received a request, we accepted the request and we saw the route appear on the application. We just had to let ourselves be guided, “he recalls.
And 10 years later, behind the wheel of his premium sedan, Zaki is still working for Uber. He also built up his private clients at the same time. He is satisfied to see relations with taxis rather “appeased”, even if everything is obviously not yet ideal. Uber is nevertheless unhappy: more than 500 drivers have even just announced that they will launch their own platform.