Uber updates app, with a focus on its drivers

The new features include instant payment, the ability to pause new ride requests and discounts on taking Uber rides.

Uber on Monday aimed to appease its drivers, but not with higher fares.
Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images

Uber's relationship with its thousands of drivers has faced a lot of challenges. Drivers have protested Uber's fare cuts and filed class action lawsuits against the company over their classification as contractors and not employees.

In an attempt to placate the people that keep Uber running, the ride-hailing service on Monday unveiled a handful of new features on its app that are targeted at drivers.

Among the changes, drivers in several US and international cities will be able to stop new ride requests from coming in, so they can take a break or log off just before dropping off their last passenger for the day. Currently, drivers must manually decline trip requests until that last drop off.

In some cities, Uber also is instituting a policy that drivers will get paid for waiting for a rider after two minutes.

Other benefits include instant pay for completed rides, instead of having to wait until the week is over. That feature is now available in all US markets. Also, Uber is testing out discounts for Uber rides to its drivers.