Uber collaborates with Meta to use WhatsApp for booking rides in India
Uber joined forces with Meta (Facebook) to make ride booking in India easier. The ride-hailing company will be using Meta's WhatsApp messaging platform for the service.
This means that customers of Uber may book rides in India through WhatsApp, so the process is just like sending an ordinary message. The companies confirmed their new partnership deal on Thursday, Dec. 2.
As Uber will soon launch its WhatsApp ride-booking system, it has become the very first ride-hailing company to try this kind of integration with an established instant messaging platform. What's more, it was mentioned that users do not have to download the company's app, and all they need is Meta's WhatsApp.
CNN Business reported that everything starting from registration to booking the ride to getting a receipt for the trip would be done and managed using the WhatsApp chat messaging interface. Initially, Uber is rolling out this service in Lucknow city in India, and later, it will be expanded to add more cities.
"The Uber experience on WhatsApp is simple, familiar, and relatable for users and has the potential to accelerate the adoption of Uber with a new category of riders in India," WhatsApp India head, Abhijit Bose, said in a statement. "The company is going to create more "customized solutions for products and services across sectors in India."
Nandini Maheshwari, Uber Asia Pacific's senior director of business development, also said that they want to make the booking and trips as easy as possible for the locals in India. To do this, they have thought of using a platform that the Indians are comfortable with; thus, the company tapped Meta for a partnership.
It was reported that India is the biggest market for WhatsApp, so it was an easy decision for Uber to pick which platform to use. The country has recorded almost half a billion users, so it will surely be hassle-free to book a ride from now on.
As per Bloomberg, Uber and Meta's partnership deal will allow users access to Uber's mobility services by sending a message to a WhatsApp chatbot. The booking process is secured as the safety features, and insurance protections will remain unchanged on rides booked via Uber or WhatsApp.