Ride-sharing company DiDi has introduced a new feature for that will keep its drivers safer on the road, voice commands that allow the confirmation of requested trips.
Australia is only the second market behind Japan to gain the new feature, which will first rollout to 1000 select drivers before expanding to the rest of DiDi’s workers later this year.
A joint development from DiDi Australia and its international operations in the US and China, the hands-free app interface is designed in response to stricter mobile phone use driving laws, as well as user feedback.
Drivers will able to confirm fares by simply saying ‘accept trip’ when prompted on their smartphones instead of taking a hand off the wheel and touching the screen.
A ‘night mode’ will also rollout with the update, which will automatic switch between light and dark themes depending on the time of day for less distractions.
Customers will also gain added functionality in the app update, with a Melbourne airport guidance feature that can navigate users to the appropriate pick-up location, a lost item retrieval function that will allow users to contact drivers easily, the ability to set multiple destinations, splitting fares and payment through PayPal.
DiDi Australia boss Lyn Ma said the updates come as a direct result of driver and customer response.
“We appreciate the valuable feedback and insights from our users and local partners, which drive us constantly for product and experience enhancement over the past year in Australia,” he said.
“Our team is excited to offer the most recently developed technology to the local market.
“We believe the approach of listening, localising and collaborating with the communities will make us a preferred transportation platform for Australians.”