Ridesharing mobile app platform Uber rolled out the ability to tip drivers through its app back in June and has already seen positive results from the effort.
According to a news report in TechCrunch, the tipping feature — part of Uber's ongoing "180 Days of Change" campaign in which it is rolling out a series of changes to improve drivers' experiences and lower turnover rate — has been well received by the army of Uber drivers. Tipping was the first new feature in the campaign, which now includes trip type preference, long trip notifications and an increased number of driver destinations, reported TechCrunch.
“This week, we’re going to hit $50 million dollars in tips for drivers,” said Rachel Holt, Uber’s regional general manager for U.S. and Canada, in an interview with TechCrunch. “We launched the tipping effort in three cities two months ago, but we didn’t roll it out all over the U.S. until the middle of July. So we’re really, really excited to see how well that feature has done in just a short period of time.”
By comparison, ridesharing mobile app competitor Lyft has offered tipping for years now and hit $250 million tips in July, underscoring the popularity of Uber.
In other Uber news, the company recently released a phone support service. Holt told TechCrunch Uber drivers have made roughly 200,000 phone calls to its 24/7 support phone service since the option's launch. On average, drivers reach an agent in less than 30 seconds with 85 percent of drivers expressing satisfaction with the service.
The new features are aimed at injecting more flexibility for drivers.
“Drivers have always come to Uber for work that’s truly on their terms: Work with no boss, work that fits around their lives, work that’s always available when they want it,” explained Uber head of driver product Aaron Schildkrout in the same interview. “That’s why we’re focusing, in this chapter, on flexibility.”
The report noted more changes are to come for the ridesharing company as Uber is just 60 days into its 180 Days of Change.