How to Switch Back and Forth Between Uber and Lyft

…switching from one app to the other leads to distracted driving…

Wayne Boyd

Distracted driving is the number one cause of Uber/Lyft crashes, and when a driver has to switch back and forth between both Uber and Lyft driver apps it can cause a serious distraction in a moving vehicle.

In some markets, driving only for Uber or only for Lyft isn’t generating enough income for the driver. To increase chances of getting business, it’s possible to run both driving apps at the same time. When a ride request comes through one, the driver has to switch over and go offline with the other. To do that the driver has to take his or her eyes off the road and concentrate on the phone. This, of course, is distracted driving.

And we all know distracted driving can lead to an accident.

An Uber and Lyft driving using a smart phone to navigate to the next destination.

Imagine a driver with no passenger is on a busy highway. The smartphone is mounted on the dashboard and both the Uber and Lyft driver apps are online at the same time. Suddenly, the Uber app comes to life, making a startling jingle and displaying a blue pulsating button. With only seconds to accept or reject the ride request, the driver presses to accept the ride and a navigation screen is presented on the phone to help navigate to the requesting passenger. Throughout all of this, the Lyft driver app is still online looking for rides. This means the driver next has to switch over to the Lyft app and go off line and then switch back to Uber navigation before putting both hands back on the wheel and both eyes on the road – all while driving on a congested highway surrounded by moving vehicles. Sound like a recipe for disaster? The same happens, of course, if the Lyft app signals for a driver first. All this switching back and forth forces the driver to take his or her eyes off the road, leading to a potentially dangerous situation.

A vehicle involved in a crash clearly has an Uber and Lyft logo displayed on the driver’s door.

Fortunately, there is an Android app to help with that problem (not available for the iPhone). The app is called QRAD and is available on the Google Play Store. It’s free for 30 days so you have a chance to evaluate it before you spend a minimal monthly activation fee.

QRAD runs in the background silently. You don’t have to open it or touch it. When you accept a ride request, the app automatically takes the other driving app offline. When you are finished and drop off your ride, QRAD switches back and turns the other driver app back on. It’s really a very simple solution to a very real problem and it works flawlessly (most of the time). QRAD can be used on a trial basis so you can test it and see how it works. Eventually, however, you’re going to have to pay a low monthly subscription fee.

The author does not have any financial interest in QRAD, but I do have a subscription and I do use it. It really does help you to keep your eyes on the road and reduce the possibility of an accident.

The QRAD app logo as seen on the Google Play store.

On UberPeople.net, LVFatMan says, “I recommend all drivers downloading this app, it’s free for the 1st 30 days .. It automatically toggles Your ride share apps when you accept one it automatically turns the other 1 off and when you Finish a ride it turns it back on, Very good app”. He goes on to say, “also QRAD has alerts now that give you a heads up warning in case the ride type is Uber Pool, Uber Eats, time/distance is too great etc. I was showing it to a friend and he told me it worked for him even though his trial period had already expired. Might be useful to even those who drive only for Uber or only for Lyft.” Here is a look at the kind of notification QRAD gives the driver:

Qrad not only switches between Uber and Lyft, toggling one or the other off when you get a ride, it also places large, clear notifications like this on the screen, notifying the driver how long it will take for the driver to reach the passenger.