Uber may soon ask Indian riders to verify with OTP before they start a ride
Uber operates in over 40 India cities and despite being launched three years after the domestically bred ride-hailing unicorn – Ola, it has been offering stiff competition. While Ola has set foot abroad starting many cities in Australia, Uber has been focussing on the huge opportunities that the Indian market offers and therefore, beefing up its workforce in India. A report from earlier this year says that Uber’s Driver app has more installs than Ola and while this does not give us the rear statistics about the market share of the two ride-hailing company, we can presume the competition is fierce.
With the intention of retaining its users, Uber has been adding new features to the app while Ola’s app has remained functionally unchanged over the years. Some of the major changes in the Uber app include the recently added 24/7 safety helpline for reporting any emergency as well as the Ride Check feature to let users and drivers report crashes or breakdowns.
The company now appears to be working on new features for Indian users. Uber India is reportedly working on adding a new verification feature which will require users to share an OTP code in order to start the trip.
Hindustan Times, which spotted the feature, reports that the objective behind the feature is to remedy one of the biggest complaints that Uber gets from users and this is about the driver starting the trip even before the rider arrives, and this, in turn, results in a higher fare than expected or projected while booking a ride. A similar OTP verification feature has been available in Ola since its introduction.
The OTP verification feature seems to currently be in the A/B testing phase with only a handful of drivers reportedly seeing it. Further, it is not connected to user accounts but with the drivers’. There’s no official announcement on when will it roll out to all users. We’ll update you when we learn in detail about this feature.