It’s estimated that there are nearly two million Uber and Lyft drivers nationwide, although that number could be less because of drivers that work for both companies. With so many drivers on the road, it’s essential that each one stands out and brings something unique to the table. One way to do this is to upgrade the technology used in the car. If you are part of the rideshare programs and you want to please your customers more, consider these five tech upgrades every Uber or Lyft driver needs.
1. Dash Cam
The dash cam isn’t so much designed to impress those riding in your car, but this is one of the easiest tech upgrades to keep you and the passengers protected. If you were to get into an accident, the dash cam would have the footage available to prove who was at fault. It’s one piece of technology that helps to prove your innocence in an emergency.
However, the dash cam can also be used to record what happens inside your vehicle. It’s an insurance policy against false accusations and harassment.
If you are searching for a new dash cam, consider these top features:
- Auto Power: This standard feature ensures the dash cam starts and stops any time that the vehicle is running.
- Auto Record: With this feature, the recording begins as soon as the car begins moving.
- Dual Channel: The single-channel dash cam only records out the front of the vehicle, while the dual-channel gives you two cameras – one for the front window and another for the rear.
- G-Sensor: With this sensor, the dash cam automatically keeps footage that could have been done during a collision.
- Image Correction: These advanced dash cams allow you to alter the lighting conditions while recording for a better view.
- Instant Playback: With this feature, you can quickly access any footage that was just recorded.
- LCD Screen: You want a dash cam with an advanced screen and high-resolution capability. 1080p or 1920 x 1080 pixels is five times more detailed than the SD (standard definition) cameras. If you get one with a wide angle lens, you can also capture 30 frames/second at a minimum but could choose models offering up to 60 FPS.
- Parking Mode: If an incident should occur while the vehicle is parked, the camera automatically turns on and starts recording.
May we suggest the Garmin Dash Cam 35?
2. GPS Navigation System
In today’s day and age, it’s easy to use your phone for navigation. After all, you always have it with you and the apps today are incredibly functional. Still, there are several reasons for Uber and Lyft drivers to consider installing a dedicated or in-dash GPS navigation system. At the very least, you'll want an Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible head unit.
For starters, the dedicated systems offer a larger, resistive touchscreen display. You can also use the navigation system even if you are taking a phone call or using your phone for other purposes.
If you are thinking about using these tech upgrades by purchasing a stand-alone or in-dash GPS system, consider these features.
- Display Size: Not only do you want a large enough screen to easily make out where you are going, but you want a user-friendly display that lets you adjust the brightness and color for optimal visibility in any condition.
- Lane Guidance: The GPS can tell you which lane you should be driving in to make your next turn.
- Lifetime Maps: With this feature, you know that the GPS will always be up to date, without the need to pay an additional charge.
- Points-Of-Interest (POI): The top GPS models come with a database showing you nearby dining, service stations, shopping, hospitals and more. If you are driving in an area that’s unfamiliar, you will want this feature.
- Traffic Updates: With real-time traffic information, you can avoid a delay in your daily commute.
3. Phone Chargers
Smartphones are one device that people can’t live without. If a passenger gets in your car and their phone battery is dead, the drive is quickly going to become unbearable. By providing a smartphone charger to your clients, you become a valuable resource.
You can set something easy up with the Anker 3.0 USB Car Charger, but don’t forget the importance of cables. Very few people are going to have their cable handy, so you will want to have a pack ready to go. For just a few dollars, you can get a multi-pack of charging cables that will easily reach the back seat.
You might think that a wireless phone charger would be the way to go, but there are several downsides to this option. First, these chargers aren’t compatible with all devices, so you might have some unhappy passengers. Additionally, your passenger will have to put their phone down to charge it this way. With a cord, the charging occurs while they continue using their device. But, if you're also looking for a phone mount, they make wireless charging phone mounts that you can set your phone in on your dash or windshield that will also charge your phone while holding it in place.
4. Bluetooth Connectivity
If Bluetooth isn’t on your list of must-have tech upgrades, it should be. Your customers are interested in getting to their destination, but they also want to access their smartphone apps with ease. By allowing them to integrate their phone into the car stereo, you add to the enjoyment of the ride. With a connectivity device, such as Motorola Sonic Rider Bluetooth, your clients can easily sync their phones for more enjoyment.
You can also take the experience to new heights with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. With an Apple CarPlay and Android Auto head unit, your customers can choose their favorite tunes or podcast to listen to on the road directly through your car's stereo. Or, if you're looking for something easy and relatively cheap, you could also go with a universal bluetooth adapter.
5. Premium Sound System
All of the connectivity in the world doesn’t make a difference if your sound system isn’t up to par. If you want to make more money as a Uber or Lyft driver, you need a premium sound system installed.
This upgrade requires that you evaluate every part of the system. Here are a few of the components you might require.
- Head Unit: The stereo receiver is the hub of the entire operation.
- Amplifier: This vital component takes the signal and boosts it for better sound quality.
- Speakers: There are various types of speakers used in the premium sound system, depending on the space you have available.
- Subwoofer: If you are looking for deeper, more powerful bass, the woofer is a must-have piece of equipment.
As your customer sits back and enjoys their music, you create a better, more rewarding experience that is sure to get you a better review.
What Tech Upgrades Will You Opt For?
You don’t have to add all of this equipment at once. In fact, it will be more cost-effective if you take the upgrades one step at a time. With each new piece added, you will receive better reviews from the customers and enjoy a more rewarding experience for everyone involved.