Uber announced a whole host of updates and upgrades to its app and platform at its annual Go/Get product showcase event today, including a new feature for teens, family profiles, Uber Car Seat, and more.
Family profiles allow people to link multiple Uber accounts together, so users can receive real-time location updates all while paying for rides and Uber Eats from a single account.
The teens feature, which will launch on May 22 in more than a dozen cities in the U.S. and Canada, allows parents of those ages 13 to 17 the ability to contact drivers directly during a trip, ensure that only highly rated drivers pick up their kids, report issues on behalf of their teen. Drivers can also opt out of chauffeuring teens.
“We’ve designed teen accounts with built-in, privacy-preserving safety features including Verify My Ride, RideCheck, and Audio Recording,” Uber wrote in its blog post about the feature. “Plus, live trip tracking lets a parent follow the trip’s progress so they know exactly where their teen is going and who is behind the wheel.”
Uber also announced it is teaming up with Nuna, a car seat company, to allow parents and caregivers to reserve a ride with a car seat enabled. Uber Car Seat will only be available in New York City and Los Angeles to start, but additional cities will follow.
“By providing parents with safe alternatives to help their teens get around, we hope this will help create more equitable solutions for families facing barriers to transportation,” Torine Creppy, the president of Safe Kids Worldwide, an organization dedicated to protecting kids, said in an Uber statement.
The event was full of new features. Also announced:
Users who aren’t comfortable using a smartphone can now order a ride without using the app by dialing 1-833-USE-UBER
You can invite other folks to your Uber Eats grocery orders, so everyone can buy groceries together and split the bill
Group rides are getting a face life with the app automatically updating the stops with the most efficient routes and charging users for the amount of time they spend on the trip.
Users can record a video gift message to accompany an Uber Eats gift
I’m not sure how many people this will effect, but if you’re vacationing in Greece this summer, you can order a boat trip to Mykonos.
A teen hacked Uber and announced it in the company Slack. Employees thought it was a joke.
The updates are pretty cool, but lest we forget that these announcements come at a time when Uber is fighting against unionization efforts(opens in a new tab) and is threatening to leave Minnesota(opens in a new tab) because the state is nearing a vote on a bill that would give wage and job protections to Lyft and Uber drivers.