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Ride-hailing platform Lyft has teased a new upcoming feature in its mobile apps that will let passengers and drivers “share fun facts about themselves and discover mutual friends and interests.”
Huh, say wha’?
Digging a little deeper, it seems what we’re talking about here are simple user profiles — the popular peer-to-peer transport network will soon let users see more information on each other, thus giving things more of a personal touch.
Launching initially for iOS with Android to follow “soon,” the new and optional profile feature lets you complete your hometown, favorite music, and an open-ended mini bio that can include anything from your job details and star sign to your favorite football team and allergies. Driver profiles also include star ratings and ride count.
OK, hometown may seem like an obvious inclusion — this is a major connecting factor between humans, and this is a travel-related app. But why one for music, specifically? “We added favorite music because music is both a universal and personal connector,” explained Lyft in a blog post. Fair enough.
While Uber has taken the personal transport world by storm, with numerous different options depending on location and budget, Lyft has remained a U.S.-only affair since its inception back in 2012. It has always focused on “ride-sharing,” as opposed to taxis or plush black cars with suited drivers.
Late last year, Lyft also launched a new service called Line, which is more like a carpooling service for people with shared destinations. And it’s this “social” element that Lyft is addressing with the new profile feature — you can see exactly who it is you’ll be sharing a car with.
“In cities with Lyft Line, we’ve heard countless stories of Line passengers connecting over shared interests or acquaintances,” said Lyft. “Profiles makes unearthing these small-world connections even easier, and is a big step toward our vision of reconnecting people and communities through better transportation.”
So with Lyft profiles, it’s all about helping you break the ice: “You’re from Philly, that’s where I’m from!” and so on.
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