Uber is expanding Uber Freight, its app that connects truck drivers with available commercial trucking jobs, into several new markets spanning the US.
After launching the service in Texas earlier this year, it's now giving drivers access to loads in California, Arizona, the Chicago-Midwest region, Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Including Texas, these regions cover more than a quarter of the country's drivers and freight, Uber said in a blog post.
The company is also updating the app with personalized load matching, which it says will create a better experience for "tens of thousands of drivers." The updates should help Uber Freight differentiate itself from other services that connect drivers with available trucking jobs.
The app will now notify drivers of new loads that match their preferences, as determined by factors like their past loads, their location and their home base. Soon, it will show loads based on a driver's preference for local, short haul, or long haul routes.
Before launching Uber Freight, the ride-hailing company acquired the self-driving truck startup Otto. While Uber's research into autonomous vehicles appears to be a separate effort from its growing Uber Freight business, the new data Uber could gather from an expanded fleet of truck drivers could help the company eventually venture into autonomous trucking.
"We're constantly learning -- which routes they like to drive, what loads they prefer, and where they want to go -- and taking that information to build a better product," Uber said in its blog post about the Uber Freight expansion.