Online cab aggregator Uber has announced that developers of Android and iOS apps will now be able to integrate Uber’s “Ride Request” button on their apps, which will show next to every address or ‘intent to ride’ feature in their apps. The ride request button will let its users get a ride to hotels, restaurants, movie theatres or other specified destinations, and Uber mentions that developers will earn additional revenue for their businesses.
Developers can follow this procedure to add the button:
– Register app on the Uber Developer Dashboard
– Configure and display the Ride Request Button next to every address or ‘intent to ride’ in your app. Optimize by specifying as much info about the Trip as you can (E.g. Pickup Location, Destination, Product etc).
Doing this will direct existing users to the Uber app with the pre-configured ride details, while new users will be directed to download the Uber app from the app store. Developers in the US who sign up for Uber’s Affiliate program can earn money for every new US rider who signs up because of the button integration.
TechCrunch reports that US developers will get $5 for every first time ride they refer. It adds that once developers sign up Uber on their platform, they will be barred from adding any other competitor apps on their apps, “to offer a consistent Uber experience in other apps”. Having this clause helps Uber, but does not offer options to users of other apps who might want to use a different service, or go to another app in case a Uber cab is not available. However, developers also have the choice to not integrate Uber’s API into their apps if they want to offer other cab services through their apps.
The API can be integrated by developers into their apps in any country that Uber currently operates in, however, the referral program seems to be restricted to the US for now. Uber had first launched its API in August last year in the US with companies like OpenTable and TripAdvisor.
Practo integration: Last month, doctor booking platform Practo entered into a partnership with Uber showing its users (who booked an appointment) to see the closest available Uber when they got a reminder alert for their appointments. Users could then click the reminder notification and complete the booking process.
Zomato integration: In April, Zomato’s Uber integration allowed its users to see the estimated ETA, fare and travel time to a restaurant that they were looking for from their current location. At that time, the feature was live in 27 cities across 13 countries.
Google Maps integrations: In February this year, Uber integrated itself with Google Maps in India, about a year after it was first rolled out in the US in May 2014. As part of the integration, when users searched for a destination they would get an option to book a ride with Uber which showed up in the public transportation pane, along with info on travel by car, bus and foot.
Ola’s API: In September, rival cab aggregator Ola opened up its API for developers and would integrate the platform’s services on third party apps. The API would allow platforms to integrate ride availability, booking, tracking and ETA services based on Ola’s data. At that time, it said that Samsung, MakeMyTrip, Helpchat and inMobi had integrated Ola’s API into their apps.
Image Credit: Mark Warner