Uber has initiated pilot project- Autohawk, for car location and health monitoring. Autohawk apart from updating the car’s location on the map in real time, would also give information related to the condition of the vehicle’s engine, gearbox, coolant levels, odometer information, etc.
Autohawk at present is still being developed and more features are being added to it in order to make the riders’ journey safer by constantly tracking movement of the vehicle.
Considering the long hours of work and the need for better passenger safety of those using public transport in India, it would be a great step as it would make the drives safer for the customers.
But now it is still at a very immature stage and might require certain time to mature be implemented, from what it seems from the reports that the company is trying to get into CAN bus of the car reaping data like the mileage, odometer readings, car temperature, geo-location, fuel level etc from the sensors. This data can be transferred to cloud and analysed to provide details like health and status of the vehicles. This would not only improve the safety but could increase the productivity as well.
The company can even benefit from the large amount of data that would be generated from the car. The company is open to partnerships with other companies for this and other projects but as of now, it has not entered into any partnership. However, Uber has not disclosed more details about it calling it too early to comment.
India is a very big market for ride-hailing firms so companies are coming up with innovative ideas to increase their market share. The company also is pondering over using UPI (Unified Payment Interface) as a payment option. It is exploring ways to allow offline booking as well as booking outside the app, which can be things such as SMS, call, WhatsApp etc. But the company has not finalised anything as of now.
Uber has earlier started cash payments, it had also conceptualised Uber Fleet for allowing vehicle-fleet-owners to do business via the app which was implemented in India and was taken overseas later. The company has also started an engineering centre in Bengaluru, to drive innovation in India as well as in Asia.