Startups similar to Uber that you probably never heard about

Aug 24, 2021 · 5 mins read
Startups similar to Uber that you probably never heard about
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Uber is the leading web company connecting the real world with people who offer services to those looking for them. In the United States alone, the cab and limousine industry is worth $11 million a year. Other people have wanted to benefit from the system implemented by Uber.

In fact, there are a number of companies that, in order to position themselves in the market, offer themselves as “the Uber model for…”. Do you know any of these companies?

In this article we introduce you to some of the most famous Apps that have been successful with the Uber system, in addition to other companies that also provide transportation services. Let’s get started.

Handy: Uber’s model for home cleaning.

This platform allows you to schedule your home cleaning, as well as other services, including plumbing, electrical, moving, among others. The method is simple. Through Handy you will be able to find who offers the service you are looking for. You will never run out of options, since this application has as affiliates many freelancers who use different schedules according to their circumstances.

Oisin Hanrahah is the co-founder of Handy, and he defines the company as a “flexible economy”, as it allows those who offer their services to have the freedom to work on their own schedule.

Postmates, Uber’s delivery model:

This company relies on a combination of location tracking, cloud-based operations and electronic payment systems to allow it to drastically improve its logistics compared to traditional delivery services. If you buy something online, Postmates takes care of finding the person who will pick up and deliver your purchase to where you tell them to.

Soothe, Uber’s model for home massages:

Relaxing is necessary. And although many seek to do so from the comfort of their home, the truth is that the goal is not always achieved. Maybe you decide to go for a masseuse.

But if you’re traveling and don’t know the place, you may not know who to look for. The Soothe company connects you with independent practitioners who have already been thoroughly vetted to ensure a standard of quality no matter where you are.

Not only do the massage therapists have the necessary equipment, but there will always be one available at any time. And best of all, their low prices rival those of many spas and hotels.

BlackJet, the Uber model for private jets:

This company actually shut down this month under allegations made by the likes of Ashton Kutcher, Tim Ferriss and Jay Z’s Roc Nation.

So we include BlackJet in this list as a warning, as it is not always advantageous to offer an on-demand service.

Those who want a private jet don’t need to economize money at all, so the purpose of the app ended up offering the ability to say, “watch me rent a jet with this app.”

In other words, it was not really offering a service, but the app ends up taking advantage of public figures as an unpaid advertising medium to make its profits; which made BlackJet a dubious business proposition.

Slate, a different approach to home cleaning services:

In its early days, Katie Shea, co-founder of Slate, had trouble using the dynamics of Uber to offer quality cleaning services. The freelancers using Slate didn’t always meet the standards of those who hired their services. So Katie Shea decided to change the approach.

She uses her own employees to do the cleaning and laundry in-house, while still benefiting from the advantages of being able to schedule appointments through an online service.

Poppy and Trusted, Uber’s model for child care:

Because parents won’t feel compelled to leave their children with complete strangers, these two companies use a methodology similar to Slate.

Poppy and Trusted use people hired by the company rather than freelancers. These companies offer their services on the basis of trust. Which is very important to drive this kind of business.

What about cab services - is Uber the only company? No, in view of the multi-billion dollar business of web transporters, there is a fierce competition to create technologies that connect drivers with users.

Here are a few companies similar to Uber when it comes to transportation:

The Twist:

Only provides cab service. They have a good drive between different states and regions, so they beat independent cab drivers.


The detail with this company is that their drivers offer a closer treatment to the user. They are characterized by having curly mustaches on the grills of the vehicles and greet users with a bump of elbows.


Profits are practically obtained by donations and non-professional drivers. However, they are proponents of carpooling as a sustainable way to get so many modes of transportation that contribute to pollution off the roads.


This company does not transport people, but pets. In fact, their signature is: “The Uber for walking dogs”.

Are you thinking of doing something similar and creating your own business?

As we saw in the case of BlackJet, the Uber model does not necessarily work for every type of service. Therefore, taking the following points into consideration can help you better direct your efforts:

  • Like Handy and Soothe, think about the benefits an app could offer to the contractors providing the services.
  • Make sure your offering has value in the marketplace, just as Postmates did.
  • If you have to build a different structure than Uber to ensure quality service, don’t think twice. That’s how Slate, Poppy and Trusted did it.

And as a customer, what can you do?

Before using any Uber-like App, make sure you know well what services the company offers or if it is better to look for an independent contractor.

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