Introducing Favorite Places for Uber

A Personalized Destination Experience for Passengers

Important Note: While I’m a big fan of Uber, I have no professional affiliation. This feature proposal was a way to substantiate some thought on how I might make the transportation experience even more exciting!


Background

I’ve been using Uber for two years now. Typically I use it to get back home at night when I feel unsafe, or when I’m in a hurry to get to a place I’ve never been. While I’ve heard a lot of different reviews on the service, I‘m continually impressed by its ease of use and exponential growth. After some research, it appears that others feel the same:

As of January 2016, 8 million individuals are using the service, which hosts over 160,000 drivers in 290 different cities. There is a daily average of over 1 million rides taken with the service.

Uber has been largely successful but when you’re scaling at such a quick rate, how can one manage a brand reputation and increase the retention of new users at the same time? Luckily, I’d venture to say that Uber can make some huge strides in these areas through a few design improvements!

Problem/Opportunity

Currently, Uber does not allow passengers to save their most frequented destinations for future rides.

Uber has an opportunity to make their service even more personal through an interface that reinforces a sense of autonomy and comfort for the passenger. What could be more personal than having quicker access to the places that passengers visit most often?

Defining Objectives

  1. Prioritize user preference through design by reorganizing current content hierarchy to reflect a passenger’s travel patterns.
  2. Inspire future usage by letting the user assign names to their most-visited destinations or locations that they’d like to remember later.
  3. Increase usage of the service through the ability to share locations with others as well as ride reminders based on patterns of usage.

So, what will this look like?

Quick alterations to destination input can put user preference at top priority. In the proposed revision, users would see their favorite places alongside unsaved, recent destinations.

  1. Favorite Places First: places the user wants to remember are prioritized over unsaved, recent locations.
  2. Organized by Most Recent: However, the user’s favorites are still in order according to the favorite place visited most recently.
  3. Accessing Non-Recents: If a user is looking for a favorite place that they haven’t traveled to recently, they can access it by tapping “View More Places.”

Cool! How can I save a destination?

As users enter destinations more frequently, there’s an opportunity for Uber to prompt the passenger to save them as a favorite place for future rides. Engineers can execute this through building a function that prompts the user to save a destination after a pre-determined number of entries.

This prevents the experience from becoming cluttered and deters passengers from getting annoyed. Want to save a destination earlier? No worries! Simply navigate to the pop-out menu pictured below and add a destination address as a favorite place.

Viewing Favorite Places and More

In the pop-out screen you can view all of your favorite places saved during destination entry or through the manual process. With the feature re-design, the passenger is easily able to search across their favorite places and more:

  1. Select to Call an Uber: The user can tap the address at the top of the overview screen to get an Uber for traveling to a favorite place from their current location.
  2. Pickup Notes: It can sometimes be difficult for an Uber driver to meet you exactly where you are. Oftentimes the driver has to call the passenger. With pickup notes, the passenger is now able to provide a driver helpful information with an option to store it with a favorite place for future use. If these notes are saved, the user is able to view them in “past trip details.”
  3. Past Trip Details: Similar to “Ride Details” that exists currently under “Recent Trips” in the pop-out menu, the passenger can view information such as past routes, pickup notes and drivers for a favorite place.
  4. Location Sharing: message, email or send one of your favorite places on Facebook Messenger to friends and family thanks to newly introduced transportation integration.

Would you like a ride?

Lastly, Uber could recognize usage patterns in their passengers. The service has a great opportunity to ask the user if they’d like a ride to one of their favorite places. Understanding these trends can lead to increased pickup rates and service, customer retention as well as consumer loyalty.


Special thanks to Stephanie Engle, Aaron Munda, Viraj Bindra, Achal Varma, and Chen Ye for the thoughtful critique.

About Me

I’m an interdisciplinary designer, photographer and hip-hop enthusiast. I’m also looking to join a design team this summer! Want to see more of my work? Check out my portfolio. Want to chat? Get in touch with me at hello@byatkinson.com


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