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UberX Series: iPhone Driver App

UberX Series: iPhone Driver App

There is a lot of information available through the driver app.  You only have access to the driver app from the iPhone Uber provides you. The app you can download on the app store for both Android and iTunes is for requesting rides.

[Update: Now you can download the Uber Driver App onto your own iPhone! Read this post for more details.]

There are a few main features of the app:

Main Screen


Driver screen

With the new changes to surge pricing (see Uber Zone Based Surge Pricing), there can be a lot going on in this view. They have temporarily removed heat maps but now there are two views, map view (no surge or heat map views) or heat maps. The heat map at this time only shows where surge pricing is in effect. I am not sure if heat maps and surge pricing zones will be on the same map or not after they bring back heat maps.

Heat maps were one of the most useful tools as a driver. You can see in almost real time where all the requests are coming from. It will be bright green if its active, and no color or red when there is little to no activity. This can help you go to where it is busiest and pick up more fares that way. The surge view is also very good now, but when it is not in effect, you won’t know where the requests are mostly coming from. This will mostly affect full time drivers as surge is not really in effect during the day. However, if you drive full time, you sort of know where many of the requests are coming from and you already have a few places to hunt for your fares.

When you get a request, it will show a few things: The customer’s name, rating, location on the map, small bar on the bottom of the map indicating estimated travel time to his location, whether or not there is surge pricing in effect nearby and also if this fare is subject to surge pricing. It will now tell you how much the surge pricing is for any given trip on the ride request all the way until the payment screen after you stopped the ride. This is a great change as before it was mostly a guessing game until you see the fare.

After the ride is over, you will have a chance to rate the client and then have two options: go back online or fare review. I don’t necessarily like that there is no option to go offline directly. The only option would be to shut off the phone or let it sit there on this screen. There have been many times I wanted to go offline so I can review the fares from the day but I was still in busy downtown so I couldn’t go online for the fear that I would get a request and take a hit on my acceptance rate. I will need to suggest this feature for the next app update.

The app checks for the newest version each time you start it. If there is an upgrade, it will ask you to upgrade even before you get to the main screen. The last update was the addition of zone based surge pricing and this only took about a minute to download and install. I would expect all future updates occur this way.


This was a feature I stumbled on. There is a small icon with the letter “i” on it. If you click on it either after the request but before the start of the ride, or during the ride, it will show you the fare and a bunch of other information. This was the old way of checking if your fare had surge pricing. This can be a way to confirm what the rate is for the ride you are giving. If the customer asks what is the fare rate, you can press the small “i” button and pull up the fare rates. It will tell you base fare, mileage rate, time rate, and minimum fare. I have never been asked but in case your customer is new and is curious about the rate.

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