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Waze Gives Carpool Commuters More Choices, Helps Eliminate Traffic

Waze.René C. Nielsen/Wikimedia

Normally, group rides using Waze involve being placed inside a car with complete strangers and with a driver who passengers did not choose. This is in direct contrast with how companies like Uber and Lyft conduct business since their customers have more choices in the matter of their rides. It seems the people behind Waze finally realized that this bit was important, which is why they finally added the feature.

The relaunched carpooling service comes with a suite of new features, including the ability for users to choose who will be driving them based things like star ratings and the other passengers in the car, TechCrunch reports. There are even filters now, which allow users to choose the gender of their driver, which should put female passengers at ease.

Apparently, these changes were made after the service was tested in areas like San Francisco. Prior to the implementation of the changes, users had no choice but to rely on algorithms to choose the driver who will take them to their destinations based on their route. Their fellow passengers are also chosen using the same method.

Unfortunately, this led to several complaints with regards to driver performance, including ones who either showed up late or never showed up at all. By allowing the users to choose only the highest-rated drivers, if they wanted them, incidents of inconvenience should be reduced, at the very least.

In related news, it seems Waze is working with the government to help declutter the roads, Fast Company reports. By and large, experts agree that the biggest contributors to traffic jams are drivers who are either incompetent or are impatient.

Thanks to the data that the app is providing, however, it becomes much easier to see which roads offer the fastest route to get to which destination. It also helps alert drivers of which roads are worth avoiding due to ongoing constructions or traffic jams.

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