Controversial ridesharing company Uber has become infamous for its surge pricing — a term it is trying to patent.
Surge pricing is the practice of aggressively increasing rates based on short-term spikes in demand. But dynamic pricing has been around for decades, especially in the airline and hotel industry.
Lodging start-up Airbnb is implementing a new model designed to help hosts price their offerings based upon demand for certain dates, location, local pricing, availability and more. Hotels, meet your match.
And multibillion-dollar start-ups are far from alone in testing the limits of pricing power — powered by technology. Consumer giants like Amazon use algorithms to tweak pricing — sometimes to the buyer's advantage — as sellers compete over your business. Dynamic pricing is showing up in more of the purchases that make our daily lives easier and more fulfilling. The more you know, the better a consumer you will become in this brave new world of pricing algorithms.
Here are some examples.
—By Michael Sheetz, special to CNBC.com
Posted 20 November 2015