India's largest shared mobility provider Ola today announced the roll-out of its AI-enabled safety feature christened ‘Guardian’ in 17 markets across India and Australia. The company says it has successfully piloted the feature across multiple cities in India and international markets. Ola says the Guardian feature is going live in 16 Indian cities as well as Perth in Australia with more cities to be added in the coming quarter.
Ola says the Guardian feature is a world-first, which uses real-time data from rides to automatically detect irregular trip activity, including prolonged stops and unexpected route deviations. These alerts are flagged off in real-time by the company's dedicated 24x7 Safety Response Team, who immediately reach out to customers and drivers to confirm if they’re safe and offer on-the-call assistance until ride completion.
Customers can also alert police authorities and their loved ones in parallel, through the Emergency button on the app. The Guardian is built on artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning capabilities on the Ola platform which enables it to continuously learn and evolve from millions of data points every single day, to improve risk-signalling and instant resolution.
Arun Srinivas, chief sales and marketing officer, Ola said, “We are focused on developing innovations that place customer safety at the heart of platform experience. Guardian brings together the precision of Artificial Intelligence (AI) with the assurance of human intervention, enabling a uniform and safe mobility experience across the markets we operate in.”
“Our safety initiatives such as Emergency Button, facial recognition system for driver authentication, and one-time-password (OTP) system, are innovations that have all been built in India and now lead the global benchmarks for the mobility industry. We are committed to further innovating on key areas like safety, consumer and partner experience in our mission to build mobility for a billion people,” added Srinivas.
Ola says as part of its holistic approach towards building a secure platform, it also conducts mandatory verification through stringent criminal records checks as well as mandatory online training for drivers that includes modules like customer service and etiquette, platform usage, partner support, defensive driving amongst others. To prevent driver impersonation Ola has put in place a facial recognition system in place, which prompts on-duty drivers to upload a selfie and authenticate themselves multiple times in between rides. This feature is live across India and is also being piloted in various international markets.