Last Thursday we hosted Uber Kenya, alongside bloggers and mainstream media for an interactive meetup to discuss the revamped Uber App that went live in November last year. The app which has already seen 68% take up in Kenya alone is build with the customer in mind and has some exciting new features meant to make the Uber riding experience easier and more fulfilling. It is faster, smarter and more reliable than what we’ve had on Uber before.

Uber came to be in 2009 and has since spread to 475 cities in over 75 countries. We’re now at about 7 years and over a billion trips and counting and making improvements on the move. It launched in Kenya in January 2015.

The new Uber app starts with the simple question “where to?”. The user answers this simple question and the app will take over from here and tailor the journey for them. In the old app, the focus was on where the rider was departing from.

Some of the other improvements that Uber users will be able to enjoy are such as upfront pricing where you’ll be able to see an estimate of the fare you’re expecting to pay, even before the trip commences. It also features an estimated time of arrival. This way users are able to make informed decisions to fit their schedules and their wallets well in advance.

The new app also allows users to sync with their calendars. Uber will then assist by having your destinations on the map, as well as having your appointments and meetings as shortcuts. You do not have to leave the app to go dig up for the right address to your meetings in another app! The app also now allows you to change direction mid-trip and save your frequently visited locations.

In matters safety for all involved, the new app will alert a driver if he/she has been driving nonstop for too many hours. The decision to stop however ultimately lies with the driver.

Some of the features of the new app are further afield and we’ll probably not be able to enjoy them here in Kenya as yet. For example, in countries where Pandora operates, riders are able to enjoy Pandora music from the app. Self driving Uber will also take a long while to come to these shores, due to lots of regulatory and human issues that the company would have to clear first.

The driver rating feature in the new app also includes more than just the star rating. You can now also use the compliment feature to tell them why you loved the trip. Did they go the extra mile? Maybe they played awesome music? Maybe their navigation is top notch? Let them know!

Within the new app, millennials will be able to unlock exclusive snapchat filters.

There is an increase in the tendency for clients to split rides and very soon carpooling (UberPool) will be upon us.