By Eric Newcomer Bloomberg
Uber Technologies Inc. is acquiring a portion of Microsoft Corp.’s Bing mapping unit, part of the mobile car-booking application’s push to broaden its in-house technology for drivers.
Uber is offering jobs to about 100 Microsoft employees who work on image acquisition and data analysis and processing as part of the mapping team for Bing, Microsoft’s Internet search engine. The deal includes a data site near Boulder, Colorado, as well as cameras, software and a license to certain intellectual-property rights. Microsoft and Uber declined to disclose terms.
Microsoft has been focusing on its main businesses, such as personal computing, mobile productivity and cloud software, while Uber, flush with cash, is seeking to build a sophisticated mapping organization. Uber now works with Google Inc., Apple Inc., Baidu Inc. and others to provide maps for its drivers globally.
“Mapping is at the heart of what makes Uber great,” Kristin Carvell, an Uber spokeswoman, said in a statement. “So we’ll continue to work with partners, as well as invest in our own technology, to build the best possible experience for riders and drivers.”