Global ride-hailing platform Uber on Friday launched a light web-based version of Uber — m.uber.com — in India that will help people book their rides from computers or tablets. So if you are at a place with no access to smartphone, you can book your Uber from your laptop. The lighter web-version became available in India from Friday.
“As part of our efforts to enable global access to Uber, we’re focusing on two key areas for riders — building solutions for those who don’t have access to the Uber app and enabling our existing rider app to work better in emerging markets,” Daniel Graf, Vice President and Head of Product at Uber, said in a statement.
The company also introduced three new app features — offline search, request for a guest and call to ride. ALSO READ: Uber is investing heavily to achieve more accurate ETAs: Manik Gupta
Offline search is for the riders using the app in limited network areas. With this feature, Uber is enabling offline search by caching the top points of interest in the city so that riders can enter their destinations in the app without having to wait for the connection, the company said.
Another feature, request for a guest, will help riders to book an Uber for anyone from their Uber app no matter where the rider or guest is located.
To use this feature, the person requesting the ride for a guest can simply tap “Where to?”, then choose who is riding above their pickup location. The rider will receive trip information in an SMS text message — including ETA, car type and driver contact information, enabling them to coordinate with the driver directly. ALSO READ: Uber will suspend dynamic pricing during odd-even program in Delhi
The driver will see the rider’s name, and be able to contact that person too (through a masked number, for privacy on both sides). The ride will be charged to the requestor’s card on file unless the requestor selects cash as the payment.
The roll out of both the features will begin in next few weeks, the company added.
Through call to ride, riders can call single phone number and enter a numeric code displayed on signage to help Uber identify their location. Once the ride is confirmed, the rider will also be sent a text message with information on the car and driver partner.
Currently, the company is piloting this feature only in Pune. ALSO READ: Uber approves SoftBank’s $10 billion investment offer: Report
“We believe these features will help us better serve our rider needs and are very excited about the roll out,” Graf added.