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Uber Eats Tests TikTok-Style Video Feeds in Major Cities

ByHuey Yee Ong

Apr 13, 2024
Uber Eats Tests TikTok-Style Video Feeds in Major Cities

Uber Eats Tests TikTok-Style Video Feeds in Major Cities

Uber Eats is setting the stage for an innovative way for users to discover new dishes and for restaurants to showcase their culinary creations with the introduction of a TikTok-like video feed.

In exclusive insights shared with TechCrunch, Awaneesh Verma, Uber Eats’ Senior Director of Product, revealed that this new feature is currently undergoing testing in select cities: New York, San Francisco, and Toronto, with plans for a broader global rollout in the future.

This initiative propels Uber Eats into the ranks of several other major platforms like Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat, Netflix, and even LinkedIn, which have embraced short-form video feeds following the meteoric rise in TikTok’s popularity.

Uber Eats Joins the Short-Form Video Trend

The implementation of short-form videos within the Uber Eats app aims to offer users a dynamic and engaging way to explore food options.

Here are the key features of this new implementation:

  • Visibility Across the App: Videos will be prominently displayed in carousels, including on the homescreen.
  • Vertical Feed Engagement: Clicking a video preview opens a vertical feed of short-form content.
  • Proximity-Based Content: The feed shows only restaurants within delivery range, ensuring relevance and immediacy.

Verma emphasizes the immersive quality of this feature, suggesting it replicates the in-person restaurant experience by giving users a visual taste of food preparation and presentation, potentially inspiring them to try new foods they wouldn’t have considered otherwise. For instance, users might find themselves watching a video of an ice cream shop preparing a Nutella milkshake or an Indian restaurant demonstrating how they pack rice separately from curry to prevent sogginess upon delivery.

Exploring Dishes Through Videos

The videos featured in Uber Eats’ new feed are not advertisements; restaurants are not charged for these placements. This approach aligns with the trend of restaurants utilizing social media platforms to engage with potential customers through visual content. By integrating a similar feature directly within its app, Uber Eats is enhancing its role as a direct link between restaurants and consumers, potentially encouraging users to explore and order within the app itself.

However, the introduction of another short-form video feed into the digital landscape might not be universally welcomed by all users. Some may find the proliferation of such feeds across various apps overwhelming, questioning the necessity of this feature within a food delivery app.

Uber Eats short-form video feed
Image Credits: Uber Eats

Beyond Videos: Supporting Merchants

To further support merchants, Uber Eats has also revamped its Uber Eats Manager software, incorporating personalized growth recommendations. This update aims to help restaurants optimize their presence on the platform through strategies like promotions or enhanced menu listings.

Additionally, a new app specifically designed for restaurant managers is slated for release this summer, promising to make it easier for restaurants to manage their operations and marketing efforts on the go.

Uber Eats proudly announced it has surpassed the milestone of hosting more than 1 million merchants on its platform, reflecting its expansive reach across 11,000 cities on six continents. This growth underscores the platform’s commitment to supporting a diverse array of restaurants, from those experimenting with new menus and virtual concepts to those seeking to mirror their in-store promotional strategies online.

By enabling restaurants to promote their dishes through short-form videos, Uber Eats is tapping into the current trend of visual content consumption, aiming to foster a more engaged and informed user base eager to explore new dining experiences.

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Featured Image courtesy of Ceri Breeze/Getty Image

Huey Yee Ong

Hello, from one tech geek to another. Not your beloved TechCrunch writer, but a writer with an avid interest in the fast-paced tech scenes and all the latest tech mojo. I bring with me a unique take towards tech with a honed applied psychology perspective to make tech news digestible. In other words, I deliver tech news that is easy to read.

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