- Jeff Chiu/AP
The next time you get in an Uber in a major US city, you may receive more than a ride to your destination: there might be a sales pitch, too.
Drivers in New York, Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, Dallas, and Miami are being enlisted by an online marketplace for solar panels called Geostellar to sell solar panels to their passengers, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The Journal reports that around 50 drivers are on board and have made about 220 sales since June. Drivers can stand to earn at least $1,000 for each sale.
The only problem is that in-car sales and advertising isn’t something Uber encourages. In 2015, an in-car advertising service for rideshare and on-demand drivers called Viewswagen – now called Vugo – tried to get drivers to display ads to passengers on a tablet in the back of the car. The company estimated drivers could earn $3 more per hour by displaying the ads.
While Uber didn’t say it would deactivate drivers who used Viewswagen, Uber told Business Insider at the time, “We don’t believe that in-ride advertising enhances the ride experience, and we discourage driver partners from working with third party in-ride advertisers such as Viewswagen.”
We’ve reached out to Uber for comment on this newest tactic and will update the story if we hear back.