China’s Didi pares wait on ‘hitchhiking’ automobile carrier following passenger kill


Didi Chxuing is making enormous changes to Hitch, its inter-metropolis carpooling carrier, following the kill of a passenger by the hands of a driver earlier this month.

Final week, Didi — China’s dominant traipse-hailing carrier by some margin — expressed its “deep remorse” for the kill, and suspended Hitch for per week to habits a review of the carrier.

Hitch, because the title suggests, is a hitchhiking-style carrier that groups of us who are headed in the the same direction together. Now not like Didi’s other products and services, it isn’t commercial; passengers give the driver their portion of gasoline and some other prices they are trying to duvet. That makes it more cost effective and hugely favorite, however it surely has also made the carrier less expert than Didi’s other modes of transport. Certainly, many in China salvage claimed the carrier is ‘sleazy,’ with many comments left about passenger appearances, particularly of us which shall be feminine.


The indispensable swap will leer Hitch obtainable exiguous to daylight when the carrier resumes, without a unique rides in a job to originate between the hours of 10pm and 6am.

In an obvious nod to the unsavory facets, Didi is scrubbing all Hitch driver and passenger experiences and rankings. Inside most info for users will no longer be public, and profile photos would perhaps get replaced by generic photos, Didi mentioned.

Past Hitch, Didi can also be making changes to its driver authentication program.

That’s down, in a righteous phase, to the actual fact that the suspect in the kill of the passenger was no longer a verified Didi driver. He was in a job to make exercise of the app (on extra than one occasion) by taking the smartphone belonging to his father, who’s a verified Didi driver. Didi’s facial recognition expertise, which verifies a driver’s identification ahead of granting them fetch entry to to the carrier, failed in this instance — Didi mentioned it was “tainted” that day.

Didi is closing down the possibility for its drivers to make exercise of other of us’s automobiles with their permission, and imposing a “zero tolerance coverage” on matching automobiles with their registered home owners — a unique loophole that drew recount.


The Didi carrier added an SOS button two years ago, and now it is aiming to refine that extra by introducing automatic audio recording which is passed in exact-time to a buyer toughen agent once an SOS is activated. The company mentioned it is also weighing up along with video finally. Aware about privateness issues, the firm mentioned the audio shall be kept remotely, no longer on a passenger’s tool, and deleted interior seventy two hours if no longer fundamental for longer.

“We realize that no longer every person is happy with having their journeys recorded. Additional particular person authorization may perhaps per chance also be fundamental if in-automobile video monitoring were to be equipped finally,” the firm mentioned.

“Nonetheless, this may perhaps per chance also be a most attention-grabbing technique to make stronger safety requirements, and to be sure enough evidence toughen for attainable dispute decision,” Didi added. “Would this be an appropriate resolution in the eyes of our users?”

That’s one in every of a series of questions place out by Didi, which mentioned this can solicit opinions for attainable safety measures. The firm mentioned it has booked “proactive consultation sessions with relevant authorities and experts” and this may occasionally also place out a name for touch upon its social media channels.

Didi is facing strain from rival Meituan Dianping, which started off in native products and services however no longer too lengthy ago equipped traipse-sharing products and services and moved into dockless bikes with the acquisition of Mobike.

This is never any longer the first time that Didi, which grew to vary into China’s single-perfect traipse-hailing firm when it sold out Uber’s native industry in 2016, has dealt with the kill of a buyer. Two years ago, a girl in Shenzhen was robbed and murdered by a Didi driver.

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