Uber is now tracking users at all times, even if they have closed its app. This is apparently part of a wider effort to improve service times; but has raised many privacy concerns among users who would like to avoid having all their movement tracked by a transportation company.
Update 3.222.4 changes how the app tracks those who have it installed. According to Uber, the always on tracking is designed to only record movement five minutes after a trip is completed. Previous versions of the app would only track a user’s location while waiting for a ride, and stop once the person begins the trip.
This change is supposedly to gather more information on user behaviour to improve drop-offs and pick-ups. Uber wants its app to be more accurate on directing drivers to the correct location, without requiring the passenger to do any extra work. The company also wants to know how often passengers have to cross a street after being dropped off.
To be fair, Uber has already indicated that it would begin tracking users last year. It looks like this plan has been in the works for a while now, with the company working to deploy the change over the last few months.
Those uncomfortable with the idea of Uber tracking their movements can still turn off tracking; but this prevents the app from automatically locating the person when he or she calls for a ride. That’s not to say that it won’t work anymore; addresses can be entered manually. However, it removes the convenience of simply tapping a few buttons to call for a ride.