Uber expands 'Connect' service to five more cities in India
Ride-hailing platform Uber on Thursday said its package delivery service 'Connect' has been rolled out in five more cities - New Delhi, Noida, Hyderabad, Chennai, and Chandigarh.
The service, which was piloted last week in Kolkata, Jaipur, Guwahati, and Gurugram, enables residents to send and receive items from each other within city limits, while maintaining social distancing amid COVID-19 outbreak.
"The positive response to our pilot programme last week has encouraged us to expand the availability of Uber Connect, Uber India, and South Asia Director - Operations and Head of Cities, Prabhjeet Singh, said in a statement.
It helps support cities and communities through Uber's technology and network by moving what matters. Additionally, it creates earning opportunities for driver partners, Singh added.
All packages sent via Uber Connect need to be transportable on a two-wheeler vehicle, be under 5 kilograms in weight, securely sealed and items such as alcohol, recreational drugs, or dangerous and illegal items are not allowed to be sent.
Uber said its new package delivery service will adhere to all guidelines laid down by authorities, and all driver partners associated with Uber Connect have undergone virtual training exercises for this service.
Like on-demand trips, customers will be able to monitor the trip's progress prior to pickup, en route, and at the drop off. Customers can also share the delivery status with the recipient of the package.
Recently the ride-hailing app led $170 million investment in scooter and bike-sharing startup Lime with participation from Alphabet, Bain Capital Ventures, GV, and other existing and new investors.
As part of the deal, Lime is also acquiring Uber’s micromobility subsidiary Jump, and will further expand its mobile app integration with the ride-hailing giant.
Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO, Uber, said, Lime has the operational expertise and undivided focus needed to build a scaled, sustainable, and micro-mobility business, and with this tie-up 'our customers will continue to have access to bikes and scooters in both our apps’.
(Disclaimer: Additional background information has been added to this PTI copy for context)