This week Uber announced some big changes coming to their app, the shocker was allowing teens to book their rides and order their own food. This has been a hot debate for drivers for years because, since Uber’s inception, anyone under 18 is supposed to be accompanied by an adult. This and more in our weekly round-up.
Uber Rolls Out Updates, Including a Way for Teens to Book Rides
Uber announced several updates Wednesday during the company’s annual Go-Get product showcase.
The new options include the ability to reserve a ride with a car seat, to call an Uber without the app, and to add teens to a family profile, among others. This year’s Go-Get event marks Uber’s first in-person press conference since the pandemic.
“Whether you’re staying home or getting out there, we are building with humans for humans,” CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said during the event.
Shares of Uber are up around 51% year to date and, in a release about Uber’s first-quarter results earlier this month, Khosrowshahi said the company is off to a “strong start” for the year. The new options provide an example of how the company hopes to maintain its momentum while competitors such as Lyft, which is down about 25% year to date, continue to struggle….
We shared this news on Facebook and got mixed reviews from our readers. Reader Ed said, “I think it is a great idea. As long as the parents are in charge I am good.”
Responses to him were less than favorable, touting that parents aren’t often able to control their kids or that the parents are responsible enough on their own as it is.
Reader Andy mentioned that he already records all of his rides with his dash cam, so he’s more than happy to take on teenage passengers. Divers have to be careful because, as Andy said, “We’re the ones who will get sued by the parents if anything happens.”
Personally, I lean toward allowing it. In my experience, it’s hard to know for certain if a teen you’re picking up is the right age or not without asking for ID anyway. This way, it’s properly tracked through the app as a teenage ride request and has the added coverage of voice recordings throughout the ride so everyone knows nothing bad is happening.
Hopefully, the added voice recording feature would help keep rowdy teens in line.
And, of course, it helps that drivers will have the option to turn off the teenage ride feature in their options, much like Uber Pet or Uber Pool.
Who Gets the Groceries for a Vacation House? Uber will.
Get a few people together for a weekend at a rental cabin or beach house, and participants inevitably fall into high school group-project dynamics.
You have the ideas guy, the team player, and the deadweight who shirks any responsibility. And, of course, you have the captain tasked with wrangling the crew and making Venmo requests to save the sinking ship. It’s a thankless job that goes to the most organized person of the group.
On Wednesday, Uber launched group grocery orders on Uber Eats to fix that problem. Customers who like to cook on vacation or just want to stock the fridge with snacks can invite up to 15 travel companions to add items to a shared grocery cart….
This is a fun and innovative idea, in my opinion. My friends and I just went on a vacation together and while we did find an easy way to split our bills for food and rides, this could have cut down on some of the hassle.
As always, anything that makes people’s lives easier in any way is going to be an easy pill to swallow. This would help not just with groups of friends but even families that go on vacations together or get together regularly for big homemade meals.
This way, the bill can be split evenly among the group without having to calculate it, and hope no one gets upset if their portion ends up a little more or a little less. It’s all done in the app so you don’t have to worry about it.
Very cool, Uber.
The Morning After: You Can Now Call an Uber Like a Normal Taxi
In a striking move of innovation, Uber is opening a toll-free phone line (1-833-USE-UBER, so 1-833-873-8237) for scheduling immediate or future rides in English or Spanish – just like a typical taxi.
It’s part of several new features, including group grocery shopping for people living at the same address and upgraded Uber Eats gifts, with the ability to attach a video message to your present….
Another new feature. This might solve some of the hesitancy surrounding the older generations who order Ubers. I know my parents will never order one through an app on their phones. But perhaps if they could call up an Uber, that would be more palatable.
On the other hand, this might end up being a trial run that doesn’t pan out too much. I honestly don’t see the majority of users picking up a phone to call in an Uber as opposed to using the app. The app seems faster and easier overall.
With a phone call, you have to give your pickup and drop off address and hope the operator or whatever is on the other line understands you correctly. I mean, I know this is how people have ordered taxis in the past, but in this day and age, I’m not seeing this as a necessity or something that will be often utilized.
Maybe if payphones were still around and someone’s cell dies, this would be beneficial. But overall, I don’t see the appeal.
Lyft says CFO Paul to Step Down, Appoints a Replacement
Lyft Inc (LYFT.O) said on Tuesday that Erin Brewer will replace chief financial officer Elaine Paul, who is leaving the ride-hailing company months after a new CEO was appointed.
The company said Paul, who has served as Lyft CFO since January 2022, was leaving on May 19, and announced Brewer’s expected joining on July 10. Chief Accounting Officer Lisa Blackwood-Kapral will serve as finance chief in the interim.
The changes come after Lyft forecast a dull second quarter earlier this month, as price cuts in its race with bigger rival Uber Technologies Inc (UBER.N) to add more riders take a toll on margins….
More shake-ups coming down from Lyft. I’m sorry, but all this change is not looking good from a consumer perspective. It shows instability, to say the least.
With the new Lyft CEO stating recently that they are basically looking to parrot Uber in order to stand a chance of sticking around, it shows that they don’t have innovative ideas of their own.
Lyft needs to start carving its own way and taking a stand on its own. Lyft needs to come out of the shadows and show they have what it takes to actually compete in the rideshare market.
DoorDash and Anti Social Social Club Launch A Vibrant Summer Capsule Collection Exclusively For DashPass Members
Just in time for the summer, DoorDash and Anti Social Social Club are getting ready for the upcoming season with a new, first-of-its-kind collaboration, exclusive to DashPass members dropping this Friday, May 19 for one day only.
In partnership with DoorDash, Anti Social Social Club has created a capsule collection in an exclusive bright neon colorway, and will be available for same-day delivery only on DoorDash for DashPass members, a first for the brand.
In the collection, the main summer necessities include a t-shirt and portable picnic blanket, delivered in a customized to-go container, decorated in a trending checker graphic, a must-have for Summer 2023.
The exclusive Packable Serenity Picnic Blanket will be available on DoorDash for $80 and the exclusive Lucid Tee will be available on DoorDash for $45 in select markets throughout NYC, LA, and Miami, while supplies last….
This seems…different. The Anti Social Social Club sounds fun, honestly. I’m a bit of an introvert and I don’t like getting out much. And to partner with a big name like DoorDash, that’s pretty neat.
It sounds like a fun thing to start off the summer with summer must-haves. I’d go for a picnic if I got this customized container. How cute! I don’t know if I would go on a picnic with anybody, but if nothing else, I would proudly use my picnic blanket the day I got it.
Have you ever heard of the Anti Social Social Club? What do you think of this partnership and the package they put together with DoorDash?