A new service launched by Uber means you might soon be hopping into one of the company’s cars without having requested it yourself.
Launched by the ride-hailing giant on Thursday, UberCentral lets businesses manage door-to-door Uber rides for customers, running them between relevant locations as part of their service.
Riders don’t even need an account to jump in a car sent via UberCentral as the entire process is managed by the business that requests the ride.
“UberCentral is a dashboard that enables any business – large or small – to request, manage, and pay for multiple Uber rides on behalf of their customers,” the San Francisco-based company said in a post announcing the new initiative.
It offers several examples of how companies might use the new service, from high-end retailers who’d like to transport important customers to and from the store, to hotels looking for an easy and convenient way to take guests to and from the airport or to a nearby tourist site. Car dealerships, senior centers, and medical facilities are also cited as the kind of outfits that could make use of the new service.
The free-to-use app, which at launch is available to businesses in the U.S. and Canada, works on any tablet and web browser and lets the user manage and pay for multiple rides in one central location.
A business can request multiple rides from a single account simply by entering the customer’s phone number, pick-up address, and destination – the riders don’t have to do anything except be there when the car turns up.
UberCentral a neat idea that may have some wondering why the company didn’t introduced it sooner. While allowing businesses to easily organize rides for customers, for Uber it could be a way of introducing its core ride-hailing service to many people for the very first time, as well as generating more income via increased business-based bookings.
And the best thing about UberCentral? If a company is delivering an Uber car to your door, you won’t be paying a dime for the ride.