Uber on Thursday announced a set of three new safety features for users in India. This includes RideCheck- a feature that detects trip irregularities, followed by Audio Recording and PIN verification.
Notably, RideCheck is a safety feature that lets Uber flag certain trip irregularities. This involves long, unexpected stops or midway drops that might, in some rare cases, indicate an elevated safety risk, especially for women. When Uber detects any such irregularity, it calls both the rider and the driver to check if everything is alright.
The Audio Recording feature, on the other hand, lets a rider or driver-partner have the choice to record audio through their phone while on-trip. Once the trip ends, he/she may choose to report a safety incident along with the audio recording. Uber’s customer support agents will then use the audio to understand the case and take necessary actions. The recording would be encrypted, and users won’t be able to listen to it.
We’re launching a new safety feature in the 🇺🇸 & 🇨🇦 to help you get in the right ride. Here's how it works:
🔘The rider receives a unique 4 digit PIN for their ride in the app
🔘Rider shares PIN with driver
🔘The trip only begins in the app once the driver enters the right PIN pic.twitter.com/wvR6dkQKCQ
— Uber (@Uber) January 8, 2020
Besides, the ride-hailing firm has also announced the long-awaited PIN verification feature that Ola has been using for a while now. Riders will now get a 4-digit PIN that they need to provide verbally to the driver, in order to start the trip. This would ensure that the rider is sitting in the ride car.
During the event, the company also announced that it is currently working on advanced technologies that will use ultrasound waves to automatically transmit the safety PIN for verifying rides in the future.
For those unaware, Uber had already introduced these safety features in various markets last year. And now, the firm is rolling out them for the Indian market to match with its global safety standards.
During the event, the company’s Senior Director of Global Safety Products, Sachin Kansal said- “Our global safety product team has a simple but critical mission: to help set benchmarks for ridesharing safety. Over the past three years, we have introduced several features to enhance safety standards on our platform. Today, we raise the bar again as we work towards introducing Audio Recording in India as a pilot this year and roll-out the RideCheck feature for long stop and midway drop-offs. We have been piloting and refining these features in different markets globally to ensure they work well for both our riders and driver-partners. Privacy is incredibly important for Uber and all these tools are designed keeping that in mind. We will continue to refine these technologies so we can help make every ride a 5-star experience for all.“