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Uber testing feature that lets "uncomfortable" passengers tape ride

A child rides his scooter in the foreground as an uber car drives in the back.
Photo: Michal Fludra/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Uber is testing out a feature that will let uncomfortable riders audio record their trips and send it to the company, according to Jane Manchun Wong, a developer known for reverse engineering apps to find unreleased features.

Why it matters: The rideshare company has been criticized for the safety of its app and for its handling of violence, sexual harassment and assault during rides.

  • Earlier this year, a University of South Carolina student was killed after entering a car she mistook for an Uber.
  • In 2018, an Uber driver shot and killed a passenger in Denver.
  • Also that year, two women filed suit against the company over allegations that lax vetting practices had led riders to a number of dangerous situations.

The big picture: The company has recently rolled out a number new safety features in an effort to quell concerns. These include a feature that allow users to send text messages to 911 dispatchers from within the app and an option for riders to verify their driver's identity with a unique pin.