Uber is testing a tool that lets passengers record audio from a ride if they feel unsafe – as developer discovers unreleased feature in the app’s Safety Toolkit
- New feature could help riders document improper driver conduct
- The recorded audio would be sent to Uber for review
- The option is built into the Safety Toolkit in the Uber app
- Uber has yet to confirm any plans to release the tool
Uber customers who feel unsafe during a ride may soon be able to record audio and share it with Uber during a ride.
A new ‘Record Audio’ feature has been uncovered in the app’s Safety Toolkit, which is said to let riders document the audio of a ride if a driver is acting inappropriately.
The news comes during a time when Uber is under microscope for its lack of safety concerns.
Scroll down for video
Hong Kong-based coder Jane Manchun Wong reverse engineered the newest feature being tested for Uber’s Safety Kit, an option that will allow passengers who feel unsafe during their ride to record audio and send it to Uber for review.
Hong Kong-based coder Jane Manchun Wong reverse engineered the newest feature being tested for Uber’s Safety Kit, an option that will allow passengers who feel unsafe during their ride to record audio and send it to Uber for review, Digital Trends reported.
Last year, Uber announced a partnership with background check providers Checkr and Appriss after criticism for lax practices for screening drivers.
The company also announced it was ending its policy of settling sexual assault charges against drivers through mandatory arbitration.
A CNN investigation found that 103 Uber drivers around the country had been accused of sexually assaulting passengers between 2014 and 2018.
Uber has yet to officially acknowledge the audio recording feature or announce a date for a full public release.
It’s not just passengers that feel at risk using the ridesharing app.
Earlier this year, The Guardian found several Uber drivers who have reported being sexually assaulted by passengers while on the job.
WHAT’S IN UBER SAFETY KIT?
A customizable list of “trusted contacts” that you can pull up in an emergency
Option to share live data from your trip with a friend or family
Direct contact with Uber support to register a complaint
Ability to connect with local police and send them information about your trip
In August, a Georgia woman attacked and bit an Uber driver, and in January a Las Vegas Uber driver was assaulted by two teens for refusing to accept their fare.
The driver suffered a broken cheekbone from the punches to his face.
Uber had recently announced other safety tools at a conference, with the hopes to make the world see them in a different light.
The firm released a four-digit PIN verification system that riders will need to say out loud to the drive before he or she can start the ride.
However, the firm is set to release technology that uses ultrasound waves that will know when the rider is in the car.
The ‘Real-Time ID Check’, released in 2016, has been updated to make drivers move their hear around, blink and smile while looking in to a smartphone camera.
Finally, riders will be notified if they are dropped off near a bike line in a bid to avoid accidents.