Uber, a ride-haling company that is headquartered in San Francisco, has announced a pilot for its new Uber Lite app from India. This new lite and simple app will work on Android phones natively and will work across networks. The app is just 5MB, which as Uber puts it, is just the size of three selfies.
Manik Gupta, who heads Uber’s Product, Maps, and marketplace, said the idea was to cater to the users in markets where most of the phones are old and with limited storage. Gupta said the 150-member engineering team in India will be able to bring better insights on what is needed in a market like this. The Uber Lite app will be rolled out to other markets in the near future. In India, it will be available in Delhi, Jaipur, and Hyderabad. Roll out for other cities will start soon.
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Gupta said Uber has 75 million active riders at 15 million rides per day. “But still just 1 per cent of all miles in the world are on ridesharing platforms,” he said, underlining the opportunity Uber was after. The new app will have maps on demand, connected rides, guided pickups and tap over type. The app will soon have support for regional languages. Uber India figures show that over 70 per cent of the Android users in India are on older devices.
“New features are already in the works, but we are not in a position to explain which markets we will be going to next,” said Peter Deng, head of rider experience for Uber. The plan is to cover top seven Indic languages in the coming months.