Facebook announced a new feature for Messenger that lets you request a ride from a car service like Uber.
In fact, Uber is a partner on the feature, though Facebook says it's just the first partner. Lyft is reportedly coming soon.
"To get started, download the latest version of Messenger," explains product manager Seth Rosenberg. "Then, from within a conversation, tap the more menu and choose Transportation. You can also search directly for Uber – our first partner – and tap the car icon to request a ride. From there, you’ll receive updates on your driver’s status and notify your friends that you’ve called a ride. With the ability to request, track and pay for a ride in Messenger, we’re making transportation as simple as sending a message."
For now, users can get a ride for free the first time they use the feature (up to $20 value).
"All you have to do to claim your free ride is link your existing Uber account or set up a new account within Messenger and request a ride," says Rosenberg. "Driver status updates and payment receipts will get delivered to a private conversation between you and Uber. With everything in one place, you can seamlessly keep track of your ride and payment history."
Over the past year, Facebook has been adding a lot of functionality to Messenger to make it more useful for a variety of situations - way beyond simple messaging. Facebook may have closed down some of its standalone apps recently, but this one is definitely a keeper.
Images via Facebook