Skip to main content

Uber app adds audio recording, warns you if your driver goes off-route

Acknowledging the safety elephant in the room.

What you need to know

  • Uber will allow passengers or drivers to record encrypted audio of their trip through the app.
  • Audio recording is currently only available in three U.S. cities — Kansas City, Louisville, and Raleigh-Durham — as well as twelve Latin American countries.
  • Uber RideCheck has been expanded to detect early stops or route deviations.
  • New "audible seat belt alerts" will ask you to secure yourself at the start of a trip.

Uber Ridecheck Route Deviation

Even if 99.99% of rideshare trips end without incident, the tiny fraction of outliers can prove traumatic or deadly for passengers or drivers. Case in point, an Uber safety report indicated 9 murders and 3,000 sexual assaults took place in 2018 across 1.3 billion Uber rides.

Last week, Uber announced some new safety features in its app to help make rides safer for all parties involved.

The company has made some vital updates to Uber RideCheck, its automated tool for contacting drivers and passengers after a long stop in case of an accident. Now, if the driver marks the trip as completed short of the destination, or if they take an unexplained detour, the passenger receives a safety check, prompting them to contact the Safety Issue Reporting Line or their emergency line if necessary.

Uber will also test a pilot program for recording audio through its app in three U.S. cities. With this optional feature, the passenger or driver can choose to record the trip's audio to their phones, without the other knowing.

Recordings are encrypted so no one at Uber or in the car can listen to it, taking up about 1MB for every 5–7 minutes of recording. But if you issue a safety report, Uber will receive and decrypt the recording to corroborate your safety report.

Uber has tested this feature in Mexico, Brazil, and other Latin American countries since 2019. It is likely that barring any issues with the pilot tests, Uber will roll this out to the rest of the United States — and other countries — in the near future. But its reach may vary based on local or state laws about recordings of private individuals.

One issue with using Uber's audio recording tool is that you won't have access to the recording. Even if you submit a report, only Uber will have the tool to decrypt the audio file. Uber says it "will consider providing the audio recording to the reporting party upon request on a case-by-case basis," but you have no guarantee of that. So if you feel something horrible happened to you, but an Uber safety officer disagreed, you'd have no recourse to get a second opinion.

Lastly, Uber will now send an audible alert and push notification to passengers at the start of drives, asking them to put on their seat belts. This will ideally result in better passenger safety, without putting the onus on drivers to convince passengers to do so.

Source: androidcentral

Popular posts from this blog

Got a new Amazon Echo Show? Here's how to get it up and running.

The Amazon Echo Show devices are the only Alexa smart speakers that feature touchscreen displays. Available in 5-inch, 8-inch, and 10-inch display sizes, the Echo Show is a countertop device that packs a lot of heat. Whether it's video calling via Zoom or Skype, streaming music from various providers such as Apple Music and Spotify, listening to Audible audiobooks, or watching Prime Video, you're sure to get a lot out of this device. This product line also comes in smaller versions such as the Echo Show 5 and the Echo Show 8 in case the Echo Show 10 (3rd Gen) is a bit too much for your tastes. If this is your first time getting started with one of these dynamic devices, let us show you how to set up your Amazon Echo Show! How to set up your new Echo Show all models

Protect your kids by setting up a supervised YouTube account

YouTube Kids has been around since 2015 and has grown into a great place for children to explore what YouTube has to offer safely. In 2021, the company is expanding ways for younger viewers to see more of what's available from the streaming service, along with a more mature interface with supervised accounts. Instead of a separate app, these accounts will use the official YouTube app, so knowing how to set up a supervised account for kids on Youtube is important. If you want to protect your child from some of the less than appropriate content that can be seen on YouTube, then you'll want to be sure to have the supervised account properly set up. YouTube announced supervised accounts as a way for kids aged 9+ to see to more of what the service offers while still under the guidelines set by their parent. So, whether you have picked up one of the best phones for kids or maybe a tablet like the Lenovo Smart Tab M10 HD that has Google's Kids Space for your child, here&#

Whitestone Dome screen protectors return for the Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro

These accessories don't come cheap. What you need to know Whitestone has launched new tempered glass screen protectors for the Google Pixel 6 series. The screen protectors are more expensive because they use liquid adhesive. Whitestone sells these accessories for as low as $45. The Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro already feature Gorilla Glass Victus for both its front and back panel, which is touted as the toughest phone glass available. But that should not give you full confidence that the phones will withstand repeated drops. While you can always buy a screen protector, your options for capable items are likely to be limited due to a number of factors, including the phones' curved display. Fortunately, Whitestone is now back with its tempered glass screen protectors for Google's best Android phones after skipping the Pixel 4 and 5 series (via 9to5Google ). Whitestone has a reputation for providing some of the highest-quality accessories on the market for protecting

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE review: Better phone, worse price

This upgrade is an uphill battle for Samsung thanks to steep competition. It's hard to believe that it's been a year and a half since Samsung redefined the "flagship killer" concept with the Galaxy S20 FE . At the time, the phone blew us away with its quality, delivering a true flagship experience for a significantly lower price than a "regular" Galaxy S20. The Galaxy S21 FE was rumored to be released the entire second half of 2021, and now it's finally here. The Galaxy S21 FE debuts with some of the expected upgrades over its predecessor but still retains many of the points that made the S20 FE a more affordable device. You won't find a brand new camera array on this phone when compared to 2020's device — that's a 12MP sensor for the main and ultra-wide lenses, while an 8MP sensor still resides behind the 3X telephoto lens — but Samsung has upgraded the styling to be more in line with the Galaxy S21 and the rumored look of the Galaxy