Uber Ghana recently announced that it will from July 12th, 2018, start anonymising phone numbers of driver-partners and riders.
Drivers and riders will no longer have access to each other’s private phone numbers.
“Voice anonymisation is a safety precaution, ensuring that the privacy of both driver-partners and riders is considered at all times.” Lola Kassim, General Manager West Africa, explained.
Uber will now use software to connect calls between a driver and a rider that anonymises both cell phone numbers. Drivers will see the same contact number for each rider that contacts them. Once a trip comes to an end, riders are encouraged to use Uber’s 24/7 in-app support if they need to reach their driver.
Long Overdue But Will Users Adapt?
There have been lots of reports, especially from social media, with riders reporting harassment from Uber drivers who contact them via their phone numbers.
But with this new feature, will users adapt to the in-app feature of contacting their drivers in case of emergencies like lost items or will they be frustrated with the lack of an option to make a physical call? And how will drivers respond?
Only time will tell but this is a good move from Uber Ghana especially with the rampant reports of harassment.
Joseph-Albert Kuuire is the creator and editor of TechNovaGh.com, an online digital platform focusing on technology in Ghana.
I’m also a UX Designer, book reader, and tech enthusiast (duh!)
Email: [email protected]