Uber has introduced a passenger mask verification requirement as an extra layer of safety measure because of COVID-19. This feature asks passengers, specifically those who have been called out by the drivers for not wearing a mask in their previous trips, to take a selfie which shows them wearing a mask. Unless the passenger takes a selfie showing the mask, they won't be able to book their next trip. Uber had rolled this feature out in the US and Canada in September, and is now expanding it to other regions. It also introduced a similar mask-verification selfie feature for drivers in May this year.
Uber passengers will be asked to verify with a selfie based on previous driver feedback. If a driver calls out the rider for not wearing a mask while sitting in the cab, then the rider will be asked to share a selfie wearing a mask for verification in order to book their next ride. Upon this successful verification, will the rider be able to book his next trip via the Uber app. Uber says that ever since it introduced driver mask verification selfies in May this year, it has conducted more than 17.44 million verifications in India alone.
Apart from this, Uber has also introduced safety measures like Go Online Checklist, mandatory driver education around Covid-19 related safety protocols, mandatory mask policy for riders, pre-trip mask verification selfies for drivers. Uber has also introduced the ability for both rider and driver to cancel a trip if they find that the other person is not wearing a mask. This cancellation will not levy any penalty.
Separately, Uber recently also announced that it will add 1,000 electric vehicles in cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Pune. These sedan vehicles will be available for hire through Uber's Premier and Rental services on its app. The company has partnered with Lithium Urban Technologies to make this possible. It says that it plans to scale up the number of electric cars in its fleet from 100 currently to 2,000 in the next 12 months.
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