Uber Partners With SafetiPin, Map Based Mobile Safety App
Since the Uber Rape incidence happened at the start of the year, people have been apprehensive about taking rides in cabs, not only on Uber, but also on other cab rental companies. All cab companies, especially Uber, have announced some or the other safety measures since, to make passengers feel safe.
Few days back, Uber updated their app with in-app safety and SOS features. Now, they have announced their partnership with SafetiPin, a map-based mobile safety app that tags safety scores to locations on a map in a city, based on safety audits done across the city.
SafetiPin builds on the premise that community participation and engagement will make our cities safer. Users can set up ” Circles of Interest “, which could be their own neighborhood, a place of work, or a place where a loved one stays. Any post through the mobile safety app in any of these circles, will show up on a Wall tagged for that circle.
A post can be a safety audit, a place, harassment or a hazard or even a Feeling. Users can agree to posts, put up their own comments, and even post it on Facebook.
SafetiPin can essentially be termed as a crowdsourced mobile safety app that will gather intelligence based on user generated input and let the passengers know in real-time about safety of a particular place or vicinity. At the core of the app is the Safety Audit. It consists of a set of 9 parameters that together contribute to the perception of safety. Each audit results in a pin on the specific location where the audit was performed and also records the time and date.
Now, with tie-up with Uber, the SafetiPin app will get much needed inputs from thousands of passengers who ply using Uber cabs. According to Uber’s official announcement, they will be providing SafetiPin access to partner-drivers and their cars. These partner-drivers, based at different locations in the city, will be trained and work at night with SafetiPin’s safety auditors.
The Uber-SafetiPin initiative will be rolled out in Indian cities like Delhi, and will also be launched across other global markets in the coming months, including Bogotá, Colombia and Nairobi, Kenya with the aim to cover approximately 20,000 km of city roads and areas.
This pilot project will begin on 25th February and run for 5 months while covering the following key aspects:
- Collect night-time data of extensive city areas using camera phones mounted on vehicles to capture surrounding road/ city conditions automatically at regular intervals via photographs.
- Each photograph will be tagged with a precise safety score based on nine predetermined parameters that include lighting, openness, visibility, security, walk path, crowd and gender diversity and density.
Uber plans to go beyond this and hopes to work with the city government and planners to implement safety measures required to make a particular areas safe. Uber will then, over time, re-assess the areas where improvement projects had been carried out, to measure impact against the original safety score.
SafetiPin is free app and can be downloaded for Android and iOS phones.