No need for an app: Uber launches on the mobile web

For many, Uber has been a revelation — the mobile car ordering service allows city folk to quickly and easily get around even when there are no cabs to be had. But so far, that experience has been mostly limited to users who have downloaded the Uber app on their iPhones or Android devices — those with older phones, or smartphones on other platforms weren’t able to use the service.

That’s changed, thanks to a new mobile website that Uber has launched at According to a company blog post, the startup says the mobile Web site is aimed at allowing Blackberry and Windows Phone owners to use the service, which will help expand its potential user base. Not everyone has an iPhone or Android smartphone, after all — even though it sure does feel that way in San Francisco.

The mobile Web interface tries to keep the same simplicity that Uber has for its apps — once users sign in, they need only specify a location to be picked up and then the service tells them how far away they are from nearest driver. It doesn’t have the graphical map that lets you track a car’s movement, but it’s a pretty easy way for the low-tech set to ride in style. It also let users save locations for later so that they don’t have to re-enter common addresses all the time.

The addition of a mobile web option comes as Uber is rapidly expanding around the world: This year it plans to add 15 to 20 new cities where its service will be available. Those plans come on the heels of a big $32 million round of financing that the company closed last December.