You don't actually understand how Uber works, do you? Have you ever even used it?
Uber is paying way more than it needs to for it's drivers in order to establish itself. They're doing that with investor capital that will eventually dry up. If the necessary legal precedence is established by then expect your friends pay to be about 1/2 - 1/3 minimum wage
The rates for Uber vary based on demand in a specific area. So when there aren't enough drivers on the road, the rate goes up and more drivers get out there. When the rate goes down to where it's not worth it, some drivers stop.
Almost no Uber driver does it as their primary/full time job (I saw a stat that it was something like 90% of drivers have another job, and 70% have a full time job other than Uber). People use it to supplement their income. If Uber lowers the rates too much, they won't bother driving any more.
In fact, Uber did cut their rates in some areas earlier this year. It rightfully pissed off a lot of drivers, and a bunch of them stopped driving. At that point there were not *enough* drivers, so the surge pricing kicked in, raised the rates from the lower base, and drivers came back. Uber is also talking about ending surge pricing... and Uber drivers are threatening to quit over it. Not to mention Lyft is expanding like mad, and currently offering big bonuses trying to steal drivers from Uber.
Do I think it's possible/likely Uber will try to screw over drivers? Yeah, I don't they have their drivers interests at heart, they want to make money. But so far the pure supply and demand has created a service that both drivers and passengers are, for the most part, pretty happy with. The *real* fuck you to the drivers is going to come when self driving cars completely replace them...