The latest update to Uber has caused some controversy among users, the update allows the global ride-sharing service to track passengers’ location up to five minutes after a journey has ended. Previously, Uber was only able to track users when the app was open.
Explaining the update on its website, an Uber representative said: “Uber collects your location data from the time of trip request through five minutes after the trip ends, including when the app is in the background. We do this to improve pickups, drop-offs, customer service, and to enhance safety.”
“We’re always thinking about ways we can improve the rider experience from sharpening our ETA estimates to identifying the best pick up location on any given street. Location is at the heart of the Uber experience, and we’re asking riders to provide us with more information to achieve these goals,” an Uber spokesperson said in a statement.
Some riders are uncomfortable with Uber tracking them after they’ve exited the car, they have taken to social media to complain about the ‘creepy’ update.
@Uber hi uber. love the new app design but can u update with an option to only use my location whilst using the app please
— Becky Hill (@BeckyHill) December 4, 2016
— Real Housebear (@Real_Housebear) November 24, 2016
With the latest update, Uber now requires “Always” location permission. They set a new record for creepiness *and* arrogance. pic.twitter.com/cwt81yPslc
— Ben Sandofsky (@sandofsky) December 2, 2016
Uber update ‘sets a new record for creepiness’
— asqyou (@asqyou) December 4, 2016
What is Trip Related Location Data?
Uber collects your location data from the time of trip request through five minutes after the trip ends, including when the app is in the background.
We do this to improve pickups, drop-offs, customer service, and to enhance safety. Trip Related Location Data is collected during the following times:
– When you are interacting with the Uber app and the app is foregrounded and visible.
– When you’re on a trip: from the time you request a trip until when the trip is ended or cancelled by the driver, even if the Uber app is running in the background and not visible to you.
– Up to five minutes after the driver ends a trip, even if the Uber app is in the background.
See Uber’s User Privacy Statement for information regarding Uber’s treatment of location data collected from users.
If you want to turn off collection, you can disable location services through your device settings.
On Android: Settings → Apps → Uber → scroll to “Permission” → toggle “Location”
On Android Lollipop (5.1) and earlier: Settings → Location → toggle Off
On iOS: Settings → Privacy → Location Services → Uber → choose “Never”