Uber Austin is always working to improve the Uber experience to make it as hassle-free as possible for all our riders and driver-partners. Today, we’re excited to announce app updates designed specifically for deaf and hard-of-hearing partners.
These features have been developed in consultation with our partners and are supported by Communication Service for the Deaf, the leading advocacy group dedicated to creating technologies and services that benefit deaf and hard of hearing individuals.
The small changes will make a significant impact for our deaf and hard-of-hearing partners.
Good design and innovation considers the needs of all. It is remarkable to see a technology company truly embrace diversity in the way that Uber has. When a company like Uber comes along and shows an oft-marginalized community like ours that there is a role for us, it sends a message to the world that there is a place for Deaf people in our society.
-Brandi Rarus, Vice President Stakeholder Management
Accessibility features are available for all Uber driver-partners. Driver-partners interested in these features can simply sign into their account and turn on these features.
Once these features are applied to the driver-partner account, the following features then take place:
- The Uber partner app signals a new trip request with a flashing light in addition to the existing audio notification.
- The option to call a deaf or hard-of-hearing driver is turned off. Instead, riders are only given the option to text their driver if they need to provide special instructions for pickup.
- The app adds an extra prompt for riders to enter their destination ahead of their trip and lets them know their driver is deaf or hard-of-hearing.
The new technology eases the communication between riders and drivers, helping more people in the deaf and hard-of-hearing community embrace ridesharing.
We hope these updates not only improve the Uber experience for riders and drivers, but also extend the earning opportunity that Uber presents to the deaf and hard-of-hearing communities.