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NYC green-lights Uber cab service

It's official. Uber is now the first taxi-app company to operate in the Big Apple.

You can skip the cab and hire a black sedan with -- as long as the government doesn't get in the way.
Declan McCullagh

New York officials gave Uber the green light Friday, making it the first taxi-hailing app to operate in the cab-filled city.

Taxi Commissioner David Yassky put out a statement today, announcing the approval of Uber and promising that other companies will get a piece of the action as well:

Thanks to the NYS Supreme Court's ruling this week, we will be able to see e-hail services made available to the riding public through a one-year pilot program that officially begins today. The first provider to be approved is Uber Technologies, Inc. There are several other companies in various stages of our approval process with others sure to join them, and we are excited about the prospect of seeing the universe of choices expand. The passengers have spoken and the Bloomberg administration listened...people want the opportunity to decide whether new technology can improve their taxi experience, and today, that option is available to them.

This means New York yellow cab passengers will be able to hail cabs with Uber's app. It's been a long battle for Uber and other taxi-hailing apps like GetTaxi, Hailo, and Flywheel. Earlier this week, a judge dismissed a lawsuit that put a yearlong e-hail pilot program on hold, clearing the way for these companies to operate.

"We couldn't be happier to be the first and only e-hail app that has approval to operate in New York City -- UberTaxi will be lighting up yellow cabs across New York City momentarily," Uber CEO Travis Kalanick said in a statement.