The feature is free and available on Uber Black and Uber Black SUV premium rides

By Robyn Merrett
May 14, 2019 10:48 PM
Credit: Rodger Mallison/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/Getty Images

Uncomfortable small talk with your Uber driver may soon be a thing of the past.

On Tuesday, Uber introduced a new feature called “Quiet Mode” for riders who’d rather a silent trip.

“If you need to respond to emails or are in the mood for a nap, make your trip a quieter one with just one tap. If you’re in the mood to chat, that’s an option too,” Uber revealed on its website.

All riders have to do is click either “Quiet preferred” or “Happy to chat” in the ride preferences section of the app after requesting a car.

However, in order to test the new feature, riders will have to select an Uber Black or Uber Black SUV premium ride.

The feature is not available on Uber X and pool rides.

Uber’s new “Quiet Mode” feature
| Credit: Uber

In addition to “Quiet Mode,” the ride service is launching a “Help with Luggage” feature to “let your driver know an extra pair of hands is needed for your luggage.”

Riders can also now communicate their optimal temperature with “Temperature Control” and can request extra time to get in the car with “Extended Pickup Period.”

The driver will have to wait up to 15 minutes for the rider, instead of the usual 1-5 minutes.

“Premium Support” has also been added to the Uber experience to allow passengers access to “phone support with live agents” in the event that they need immediate assistance.

The announcement comes after months, if not years, of app users begging Uber to give them the choice to opt out of talking to drivers.

“But really, why do we not have Lyft/Uber quiet mode yet. I hate being interviewed by drivers. I don’t want to tell strangers picking me up from the internet personal things about myself,” one rider wrote on Twitter earlier this month.

Uber says the changes have been implemented to help provide riders with the best possible experience.

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“Uber Black and Uber Black SUV riders told us they wanted high-quality service and premium comfort. That’s why we’ve improved features and requirements to meet or exceed their expectations on every ride,” the news release states.

“We know that when riders choose Uber Black and Uber Black SUV, they want a consistent, high quality experience every time they ride. With these new features and more to come, we’re excited to ensure that our riders can arrive relaxed and refreshed, wherever they’re headed.”

Uber was launched in March 2009 in San Francisco, CA. The company went live with its first ride in May 2010.