Tech

Uber's Newest Feature Will Make Finding Your Ride So Much Easier

Uber's Newest Feature Will Make Finding Your Ride So Much Easier

Currently, when a driver or rider needs to contact the other to clarify a pickup location or advise that they're running a few minutes late, the app will connect the two through a phone call or an SMS message.

Riders and drivers will be able to see when the other person is typing and whether the chat has been delivered and read.

According to Uber, the new in-app messaging system will preclude riders and drivers from having to share their phone number with one another when they need to get in touch. But the convenience, and the fact that you don't need to reveal your phone number to your driver, persuaded the company to roll it out worldwide. Starting today, Uber is rolling out a new in-app chat feature to connect riders and drivers in real time. "And then in other emerging markets where we do offer SMS, we don't have the technology in place to anonymize the personal contact info, so the rider and driver are actually sharing their personal contact information in some of those markets". So we're adding a way for riders and drivers to chat right in the Uber app.

Spokeswoman Charity Jackson said the new feature will be rolled out in the coming weeks.

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Messages will be read aloud to the driver, who can acknowledge the message via a tap.

Besides cost, availability and privacy, Lermitte says Uber also heard that people wanted more visibility into whether or not their messages were actually being received and read by either party. Unfortunately, there was some confusion between us and our driver about where we were to be picked up and, because I was on Wi-Fi, I couldn't call or send a follow-up text message to our driver.

Uber has always supported contacting a driver once a vehicle has been assigned, though it's relied on methods outside of the app to actually do so.

Uber last month added a "request a ride for someone else" feature. Uber also wants to improve the voice-calling experience-"It would be a logical next step", said Lermitte-although the company said it has nothing to announce on that topic.


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