Uber app to monitor drivers for unsafe driving habits

Uber security - driver car GPS

The mobile application will detect sudden stops as well as when high speeds are reached.

The mobile Uber app is going to do more than just helping people to get from point A to point B. The application will use smartphone sensors to check up on the driver’s safe road use. This is meant to discourage drivers from speeding or from road habits that lead to frequently slamming on the brakes.

The ride sharing company announced widespread testing of these new mobile app features.

The company is testing the Uber app with new software. That software is designed to boost road safety. This will be accomplished through a data analysis of the individual driver’s road habits. That data will be sent to the drivers and Uber in the form of reports. The reports will include factors such as hard braking, sudden acceleration and speeding. It can also detect if the phone is being held while the vehicle is in motion.

The Uber app will, in effect, be used in a way similar to the telematics devices used by trucking companies.

Uber app - driver car GPSThese telematics based programs are also popular among some auto insurance companies. The insurers use them to offer discounts to drivers that show their safe road habits. Now, Uber is working this data collection into its mobile app to ensure a safer ride through its program. Moreover, this is happening at a time in which many municipalities are debating tighter ride-share program guidelines.

Equally, Uber is being very careful with the way this mobile app software is being tested and implemented. The company is already facing relationship strains with many of its drivers. Several drivers have sued the company over issues regarding working conditions and pay.

The mobile app was already altered earlier this month to provide drivers with greater ability to reject rides. Drivers, who work as independent contractors, can opt to reject rides hailed at certain times. They can also charge extra to passengers who have made them wait.

The rideshare company insists that the new Uber app features won’t be used to penalize drivers. In fact, they won’t even be used to reward better driving habits. Instead, it is meant to provide feedback regarding safe and unsafe road usage behaviors. It can also help to support or debunk claims made by passengers who give low ratings to a driver.

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