Uber Brings Its PWA to Windows 10 Devices

Posted on July 2, 2018 by Mehedi Hassan in Windows 10 with 17 Comments

Uber is releasing its Progressive Web App for Windows 10 devices today. The company used to build a native Universal Windows Platform app for Windows 10 devices before, but the company stopped development of the app after it stopped functioning.

The new Uber PWA, like every other Progressive Web App, is available from the Microsoft Store. The app functions just like you would expect — you can book a ride, view your previous ride, redeem gift codes and coupons, change settings, etc. It’s a very simple app that gets the job done without much trouble.

Plus, since this is a PWA, Uber can regularly update the app on the server-side without needing users to actually update the app. Uber’s new PWA can also be accessed from m.uber.com, if you prefer using a browser. While it is nice to see Uber continuing to “invest” on an app for Windows devices, the app could do with some design changes for Windows 10 PCs to better work on the big screen as it feels like a horribly stretched version of a mobile app at this moment. Either way, you can get it here. 

Thanks for the tip, Halil!

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Comments (17)

17 responses to “Uber Brings Its PWA to Windows 10 Devices”

  1. cseafous

    As long as it is the same experience on iOS and Android, it is a win for MS.

  2. irfaanwahid

    A simple question.. as PWAs grows.. doesn't it mean the use for the MS Store also reduces? Well yes you can go and download the same apps from the Store, eg Uber. But, if apps are going to get updates on the server end, then the need for a central store managing all downloads/updates also reduces.

    • Stooks

      In reply to irfaanwahid:

      Exactly. Once you have it, you do not need the store. You don't hear Paul talking up that aspect of PWA's.

      Heck you could go over to Google Play store once they start publishing PWA's there and not use the Microsoft store at all, unless its a Microsoft PWA you want and they don't put it in the Google store.

      I personally think PWA's are just the hot Tech Blogger topic right now and the end of the day Native Apps > PWA versions.

      • jean

        In reply to Stooks:

        you are missing the enterprise angle: Microsoft is pushing towards what they call "Modern IT" with no on-premises management backend - (i.e. no legacy AD, no SCCM, no GPO) - with Autopilot, MSIX , PWA, Edge Functionalities and Extensions and the move to Feature on Demand in the Store - Store will become an essential part of your managed experience - hence some of the redesign you can already see in RS5

    • christian.hvid

      In reply to irfaanwahid:

      Correct, and that is one of the benefits of PWAs: applications are served and updated directly from the web servers, with the Store mainly acting as an app directory and broker. Over time, the app stores may very well disappear, just like the web portals of the 1990s.

  3. skane2600

    The question that comes to mind is whether Uber is just putting an existing PWA in the Windows store that is identical to a PWA for Android and iOS that already existed or is released at the same time. In other words, is the PWA truly cross-platform on Android, iOS and Windows 10? Of course, the other question is whether this "app" takes advantage of the commonly touted features of PWA's or just a wrapper around the web site which would be much ado about nothing.

    Apps on desktop Windows don't really add any value and Windows 10 phones represent an every-shrinking niche, so unless the PWA is the same on all systems, it seems kind of pointless as it would also be if it has no offline features.

    • jean

      In reply to skane2600:

      Quote " pointless as it would also be if it has no offline features."

      because the majority of people would want to call an Uber taxi (or purchase a Starbucks coffee) in offline mode - hence not to PLACE the order in the first place ROTFL

      the reason for those companies to move to PWA is to reduce cost by eliminating the development/maintenance cost of a native app - while they do provide the web app anyhow

      in addition they will get "push notification" and address the "WEB Obesity" and that's it

      also note: platform in this cas is usually a combination of OS AND Browser

      • skane2600

        In reply to jean:

        We would have to know the development details to know if any development costs are actually saved. Offline features are one of the reasons used to justify PWA's, whether they actually add value is another matter.

      • Stooks

        In reply to jean:

        "the reason for those companies to move to PWA is to reduce cost by eliminating the development/maintenance cost of a native app - while they do provide the web app anyhow"

        That is the reason when your current native app hardly does anything in terms of overall features and use of the device hardware, and is basically a webpage in native app format. In this case PWA is probably the way to go for lazy developers.

        More complex apps that use lots of hardware features (camera, GPS, etc, etc,) will be way better as a native app.

        • jean

          In reply to Stooks:

          with "those companies" I am referring to Uber, Starbucks and alike. their goal is to sell their products - they mostly don't use hardware features (except GPS) - they've invested into the native apps eco systems as a means to tie the customer to the brand.

          they however do realize that they spend too much on maintenance of the overall online presence with websites and at least 2 native apps - PWA can help them to reduce the effort to just one code base

          i agree there will always be native apps because of the rich set of technical possibilities with hardware: however as to my experience there is only a handful of these that matter on a global scale - the vast majority is just there to serve a few users with very specific needs

          • skane2600

            In reply to jean:

            The "single code base" is a red herring as far as development productivity is concerned. The question is how many different platforms do you have to think about and perform extra work for. PWAs are a thing precisely because a plain old website doesn't provide what is required for them. Extra work is required.

            Just as apps like Starbucks don't require a lot of hardware features, they don't require a lot of maintenance either. Fundamentally whether PWA's are the best solution in a specific case will depend on both development effort and the quality/appropriateness of the result on the various platforms.

  4. Stooks

    Windows 10 devices??? As in Windows PC's?? Xbox? Exactly who is going to use this?

    "So yeah let's run back to my place and get on my PC and use the new PWA Uber app on Windows 10 to get an Uber" Other fried in group "Or lets just use the Uber app on my iPhone".

  5. roastedwookie

    Just another poor web wrapper like thing. Useless on a desktop. I'm sure one would order an Uber on his desktop wincrap 10 PC because he is a desperate fanboy not using a proper smartphone, and the rush outside to check if the car has arrived, then back in to check where it is..:)))

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