Ride-hailing company Lyft debuted The Weather Channel integration for its app developed through the Made for Samsung Developer Program. The support allows Lyft's customers to request a ride directly through The Weather Channel app, in addition to allowing users to synchronize their calendars with forecasts and receive suggestions to call a Lyft when bad weather is about to strike. Given how Lyft's support for The Weather Channel was created through Samsung's developer program, the functionality will initially only be available on Galaxy-branded devices including the Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, and the Galaxy Note 5, as well as the upcoming Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8 Plus.
A Lyft spokesperson told Venture Beat that the feature is also in the works for other Android devices, describing its Samsung-only debut as just the beginning of the company's efforts to provide riders with more choices. The Weather Channel itself also has an exclusive partnership with Samsung that allows its services to be better integrated into Galaxy devices thanks to a special app, so its Lyft support on Samsung devices can be seen as an extension of that collaboration. Refer to the screenshot below to see how Lyft's newly added support for The Weather Channel works in practice. The feature should already be live for all users located in markets where Lyft is operating.
The move marks yet another step in Lyft's attempts to pair its ride-hailing service with as many third-party products and solutions as possible in an effort to increase its market presence. The company's list of supported third-party services grew by a significant margin in recent months, a trend that's likely to continue as Lyft continues to fuel its startup-like growth. The company should have no trouble doing so in the short term seeing how it just raised $500 million in private funding earlier this month, an achievement that boosted its valuation to $7.5 billion, recent reports indicate. While the company still has a long way to go to match the financial power of its main competitor Uber, Lyft's advantage lies in the fact that the firm managed to present itself in a more positive manner and has so far evaded major scandals while following the same business model Uber is.