Uber has launched a web-based booking option for all of its customers in India.
The U.S. firm first introduced ‘Dial an Uber’ — a web app located at dial.uber.com — in August in a handful of cities as a trial, and now it is available in the 29 cities that Uber currently serves in India. The idea is to offer an alternative to the Uber app for those with budget smartphones that have limited space for downloading apps, and also to battle poor quality internet connections in India with a light weight alternative.
Dial an Uber is an initiative from Uber’s India-focused R&D team in San Francisco. It is limited to Uber Go, the company’s low-budget transportation option in India, and takes only cash payments in reflection of the audience that it is targeted at. Apurva Dalal, Uber’s head of engineering in India, said the feature is “testament to our focus on using our technological edge to make mobility reliable and accessible for everyone.”
India has become a test bed for a number of Uber’s emerging market projects. It first accepted cash in the country, before expanding that payment option to numerous markets in Asia, Africa and beyond. Dial an Uber could well be expanded globally over time too, assuming that it makes the impact nationwide that Uber believes it will.
Article updated to correct that the product was developed in San Francisco not India