Uber Launches In-App Chat Functionality


He also says that Uber is still putting resources behind building out this new feature, which could expand in the future to cover more areas.

Up to now, the most annoying part of using Uber is when a passenger and driver can't find each other and need to get in touch. "It's now easier than ever to get in touch".

Uber will be rolling out in-app messaging to both riders and drivers globally over the coming weeks.

The app change follows several adjustments to the driver and rider experiences as Uber tries to retain drivers, fight off competition from Lyft, fight a legal battle against Waymo, and works to restaff its C-suite. This will bring up a very familiar messaging interface where users can directly chat with their driver. The messages are read aloud to the driver, who can respond with just a quick "thumbs-up" emoji with one tap. Read and delivery receipts are baked into the feature so riders and drivers will know when their messages have been seen by the other party. And the calling feature could lead to awkward conversations while riders and drivers tried to locate one another.

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Riders can text their en route driver by going to the Uber feed and tapping on "contact" followed by "chat". This means that they would be exchanging their phone numbers and some users aren't entirely comfortable sharing that information. Seeing as this is most likely for convenience and privacy, it's likely that's not going to be the case. The obvious solution to this problem has finally arrived, as Uber has developed an in-app messaging service. "We're exploring adding this feature to UberEATs, too", Jeremy Lermitte, a product manager at Uber told POPSUGAR. "That's especially true in some of our key markets like Brazil and India". 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. That's the reason why the Uber app's chat feature supports delivered/read statuses - something that's not widely supported with SMS messages.

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

Another positive is that because the in-app messaging only requires an internet connection, global travelers without affordable roaming plans will only need to be connected to a Wi-Fi hotspot to communicate with their driver.