Why it matters: Uber is constantly looking for ways to improve its service. The latest batch of features, which focus on streamlining the pickup process, should help accomplish that goal by reducing the number of rides that get cancelled and thus, boosting overall efficiency for both riders and drivers.

Uber has introduced a handful of new features aimed at improving the pickup process.

Most people use Uber as situations arise but sometimes, you know well in advance when you'll need transportation (if you have an early flight or an important meeting, for example). In these instances, Uber's on-time guarantee comes in handy. If your driver doesn't arrive during the scheduled pickup window, you'll receive a credit that can be used towards your next ride.

Uber's in-app messaging feature has also been tweaked. Now, you can send your driver a direct message or provide a quick update via one of several pre-written messages that can be sent with a single tap. Pickup messages are read aloud to drivers and they can simply tap to respond.

Building on Uber's beacon feature is Spotlight, a simple solution that helps riders stand out in a crowd or at night. The idea is simple - you tell your driver what color to look for, then just hold your phone in the air and it'll be lit with that specific color. Your driver knows to look for a green light instead of a red light, streamlining the pickup process. If your driver is using a beacon, that'll be used instead of the Spotlight feature.