Uber the global taxi aggregator, launched four new features in India to entice users. The features include a website version of Uber, request to book rides for a guest, offline search for those with limited connectivity and a call to ride feature.
The new features aim at making the taxi booking process easy and hassle free. The call to ride feature will allow riders to book rides through a phone call across popular zones in the city. The company is piloting a single nationwide phone number for users to book rides along with numeric codes for specific locations. The offline search feature is aimed at helping riders in limited network areas by caching the top points of interests in the city. The company also launched Uber lite web for riders using feature phones or smartphones not compatible with the latest Uber app. The website, m.uber.com, works exactly like the app after the users have logged into their accounts. The fourth feature ‘Request For A Guest Ride’ will allow riders to book cabs for anyone, anywhere. A user can book rides for friends and family members within the same city or in a different city in India by simply tapping “where to” and then choose who is riding above their pick up location.
According to the Vice President of Products, Daniel Graf, in countries like India, Brazil and Indonesia, three fourths of the riders use smartphones to book rides. “As a part of our efforts to enable global access to Uber, we are focusing on two key areas; 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,” he added. At present, the new features are India specific but can be applied globally as well. Speaking about the new features, Garf added, “This is a global announcement and all our innovations touch the Indian and global markets. We introduced cash payments in India for the first time and that innovation has now been rolled out in half of Uber’s global markets.”
India is also the second largest market for Uber, operating in 29 cities and partnered with around 450,000 drivers. Recently, the company also launched a second engineering facility in Hyderabad, which would be working on innovations that can be applied to Indian as well as other global markets. The Indian team also played a key role in developing the pieces of innovation. The startup, which facilitates 10 million trips per day, has a team of more than 150 engineers at its Bengaluru and Hyderabad centers.
All four of the new services will be rolled out in a few weeks.
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How To Use WhatsApp Payments Feature In India
WhatsApp the online messaging service launched their payments feature on Sunday. The United Payment Interface, UPI platform, is now live on the iOS as well as on Android devices. It is interesting to note here, India is the first country in the world to get this feature! So far, this feature has only been made available in the beta version and will soon be made available in the updated versions.
With the introduction of the payments option, WhatsApp has become more than just a messaging service. The newly rolled out payments feature lets users transfer money to their WhatsApp contacts through the app. By introducing this feature, these UPI based payments feature is squashing all competition and other online wallets in India. Further, this feature also allows users to transfer money directly from their bank accounts to anyone instantly.
WhatsApp payments option is now available in two places on the app, settings option and below the attachment icon when you open a particular chat. It is very similar to other mobile wallets like Paytm, Mobikwick and Tez. However, WhatsApp payments app as of now does not support payment option for merchants. This feature can only be used for bank to bank money transfer.
* The foremost factor that the sender should keep in mind is that user’s WhatsApp number should be the same as the number linked to the bank account along with UPI option activated.
* Before using the payments feature the sender and the receiver must ensure both their phones have the latest WhatsApp version.
Is The Cryptocurrency And Bitcoin Era Over?
Cryptocurrencies saw a sudden rise in the recent times. At present, there are atleast ten popular digital currencies that are ruling the virtual currency industry, with Bitcoin standing on the top. However, despite reaching a high valuation of $ 20,000 in December, the value of Bitcoin dipped by more than 50 % on Friday.
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