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Photo shows an exterior view of the headquarters of Uber in San Francisco. (VOA)

Ride-hailing major Uber has introduced several new features including one that can give passengers the tools that are needed to get help quickly in the event of a possible crash.

The feature, called Ride Check, harnesses the power of GPS and other sensors in the driver’s smartphone to detect possible crash.


“When a Ride Check is initiated, riders and drivers will be prompted to use our Safety Toolkit, which includes the option for 911 assistance. Our safety team can also followup by phone to make sure everyone is safe,” Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement on Wednesday.

Uber launched the “Safety Toolkit” and in-app emergency button for riders in April and these features are now available across India, Canada, and the US, as well as countries throughout Latin America.


App-based Cab Uber. Wikimedia

The Ride Check feature can also flag trip irregularities beyond crashes.

For example, if there is a long, unexpected stop during a trip, both the rider and the driver will receive a Ride Check notification to ask if everything is all right.

“They can let us know through the app that all is well, or take other actions like using the emergency button or reporting the issue to Uber’s critical safety line,” Khosrowshahi said.

“We expect to expand this technology to additional scenarios in the future,” he added.

Uber also announced that it would soon start voice-activated commands designed to offer drivers and delivery partners a hands-free way to interact with the Uber app, so they can accept trips and communicate with customers using just their voice.

To protect the privacy of users, Uber’s Driver app would only show the general area where a trip started and ended, not the address, Khosrowshahi said.


The feature, called Ride Check, harnesses the power of GPS and other sensors in the driver’s smartphone to detect possible crash Pixabay

Uber also announced that it was extending the two-step verification process to give riders the option to use this feature every time they log into their account.

Also Read: Ola Expands its business, Starts Services in UK

So one can now choose to use text messages or third-party authentication apps like Google Authenticator, Authy, or Duo by visiting their account settings and selecting their preferred method.

“You can expect to see these features in your app over the coming months, and there’s more to come. That’s because when it comes to safety, our work is never done,” Khosrowshahi said. (IANS)


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The aim of the book is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

By Siddhi Jain

Delhi-based author Pritisha Borthakur is set to release her new book, 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories'. The 1,404-word children's book was put together to address a new kind of societal debacle in the family system. The author says the aim is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

The author who named the book after her twin sons -- Puhor and Niyor -- is a parent who has seen and heard the tales of ridicule and discrimination suffered by many in India and beyond. She says the book is an artistic illustration for kids that details how different families can live and coexist. Whether it's children with two dads or two moms, children with a single dad or single mom, and even multiracial family units, Borthakur's book teaches love, understanding, and compassion towards unconventional families.

Beyond race, gender, color, and ethnicity which have formed the bases for discrimination since the beginning of time, this book aims to bring to light a largely ignored issue. For so long, single parents have been treated like a taboo without any attempt to understand their situations; no one really cares how or why one's marriage ended but just wants to treat single parents as villains simply for choosing happiness and loving their children.

Homosexual parents, a relatively new family system, is another form that has suffered hate and discrimination for many years. Pritisha emphasizes the need to understand that diversity in people and family is what makes the world beautiful and colourful. 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories' is a firm but compassionate statement against all forms of discrimination on the bases of sexual identity, gender, race, and even differences in background

four children standing on dirt during daytime 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories' is a firm but compassionate statement against all forms of discrimination on the bases of sexual identity, gender, race and even differences in background. | Photo by Ben Wicks on Unsplash


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