How to Use the New Uber Pickup Tools to Find a Driver Faster

When you call Uber to pick you up from home, finding a driver is not difficult (usually). When you call Uber to pick you up from a more crowded location, things can get complicated.

To make the process easier, Uber this week released a new tool called Spotlight – a kind of digital flash you can use to grab the driver’s attention and set you apart from the rest.

Once you’ve placed a ride request with Uber and are watching your ride, simply tap the small icon in the lower right corner of the screen. Assuming the driver is not yet using the beacon , you will be able to fill your phone’s display with a color (which you choose) and Uber will tell your driver to look for someone waving a phone that has the same color.

Of course, there are not many colors in the rainbow. If the concert just ended and you (and everyone else) are trying to hijack the Uber house, chances are good that you won’t be the only person in the group waving a yellow (green or blue) screen. … However, Spotlight will at least make your trip easier to find.

You will also see a new chat box at the bottom of the screen that you can use to enter detailed information about your location or appearance. I have personally found that saying “I am the girl in the red dress” is just as easy by texting the driver from the app, and it can go a long way in helping out in a crowded situation. However, messages sent using Uber’s pickup notes are read to your driver via the app, so they might be slightly more useful than text messages.

I tested both instruments in New Orleans last night. We were on a crowded street and our driver found us pretty quickly. I honestly think we would be fine if there were no additional directions and colored highlights, but it never hurts to be specific.


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