Uber has no doubt fallen from grace especially in South Africa. The “ease of use” has been replaced with dangerous situations where many people have begun opting out of using the service after multiple safety threats have occurred over the past couple of years. Uber plans on fixing this by implementing a new audio-recording feature that will allow them to record trips in an attempt to add another layer of safety onto your ride.
Uber has revealed the feature will roll out first in Mexico and Brazil next month before releasing it in the US and other territories. It will see drivers set up the feature automatically for all rides and the passenger will decide whether or not they want their ride recorded before they start their trip.
The Uber driver won’t be notified whether or not the ride is being recorded or if the recording has begun. However, Uber drivers will get notified that the feature has been added to their app when it rolls out in their territory.
If the passenger feels like their trip was unsafe, they can choose to submit the recording to Uber’s customer support to report any safety issue they may have had during the ride. The recordings are also saved in case users want to report them at a later date.
Uber claims the recordings will be encrypted and passengers and drivers will not be able to just access them at any time. Certain countries will also allow law enforcement to obtain these by request.
While the feature sounds great for safety, there are a few hurdles it will have to jump in order to be implemented across the globe. Mainly privacy issues in countries where audio of a customer requires legal consent to be used. However, Uber says they are working on ironing out the possible legal hiccups that may come with the rollout of the feature.
We don’t know when the feature will roll out in South Africa but it cannot arrive fast enough. The service has come under fire in the past few years after rape, hijacking and even murder cases have been reported by customers using the service. Hopefully, this new Uber safety feature helps decrease the ongoing issues with the app.