Cab hailing app Uber will now allow third-party apps to dole out news notifications, music playlists and local deals to its users.
Uber Technologies Inc, which recently completed one billion rides globally, has launched a new API (application programming interface) feature which allows users to integrate their favourite apps while availing Uber rides.
"This is the first time we've announced a global product outside of the US and we're thrilled to be able to launch the new API feature here in India amongst developers through our very first hackathon in Bangalore," said Saad Ahmed, business development lead, Uber India.
Users will need to give permission before any app can connect to their Uber account and access their trip details. There is also an option to turn off the feature on an app-by-app basis.
Uber recently conducted an invitation-only hackathon in Bengaluru where it shortlisted 10 developers to build a prototype that integrates Uber with their apps. In India, Uber is already integrated with the user platforms of Zomato, Practo and other leading tech startups.
Uber is one of the most valued startups globally. It recently raised $2.1 billion in a new round of funding that takes its valuation to $64.6 billion, The Wall Street Journal reported. The round was led by Tiger Global Management and T. Rowe Price, the report said. Prior to this round, Uber had raised more than $10 billion in equity and debt, it added.
In India, Uber competes with cab aggregator Ola besides fleet taxi companies Meru, Tabcab and others. However, the competitive environment is becoming strenuous for the company. Four of its rivals â€“ India's Ola, China's Didi Kuaidi, Lyft of the US, and Southeast Asia-based GrabTaxi â€“ tied up in November to enable customers to avail cab-hailing services of all four firms through the same app.