Yu Televentures, alongside the launch of its Yu Yutopia flagship smartphone on Thursday, also introduced a new service aggregator platform called Around Yu. It debuts with the smartphone and will eventually be expanded to other smartphones from the company.
The app is aimed at providing a single location for users to access important utility services, such as flight, bus, hotel, and taxi bookings, food ordering, and shopping. So rather than have users download and install various apps to access such services, they can now visit the app with a swipe right from the home screen (just like Google Now and Shelf). The company calls it a "single discovery window" for a "suite of services", apart from a "personal assistant".
Yu has partnered with ixigo for booking flights and hotels, and with Ola for cab booking. Other partners include Flipkart, Zomato, Cricbuzz, and Oyo Rooms. Around Yu shows a total of eight sections - All, Food, Shopping, Cab, Flight, Hotel, Bus, and Train. Where multiple service providers are accessible, Around Yu shows prices across providers, as well as coupon deals. Below these sections there is a search bar asking users what they want to search for. There is also an option to share searched items with others via various communication apps.
For now, under the Train section, users will have to give the train PNR number to get details. The section is likely to receive an upgrade with more features in future.
Early adopters get discounts with certain service providers. The first cab booked via Around Yu will offer Rs. 100 off to users, while the fourth cab ride is said to be free. The first meal ordered through Around Yu will get a 15 percent discount. 40 users every week will get flights at Rs. 1 with their first booking.
The number of services on offer for now are limited, and can be expected to gradually grow as Yu Televentures joins hands with more partners in future. Yu Yutopia is the first in the lot to carry this feature. We tried Around Yu and it works exactly as expected.