For those of you city dwellers who do not own a vehicle, but would like to have access to one from time to time, Zip Car offers you just that with the ability to rent a vehicle for an hour or a day. I first saw the Zip Car model when visiting home in Boston, and I thought it was a great idea, but it was lacking a mobile way to reserve a vehicle. Oh sure, if you own an iPhone, you could use the app there, but since I like having control of the things I own, I of course use Android. Well, Zip Car heard the feedback of no mobile app on the Android platform, and have released a beta app for use with Google’s mobile OS.
Releasing the news via press release, Zip Car is giving Android users the ability to schedule a vehicle right on their mobile devices. The app also allows users to locate their Zip Car rental by GPS location, or by triggering the horn or lights so they can pick it out of the “crowd”. The app is free and can be downloaded by going to the zip care site located here. Check out the full press release below.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., May 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Zipcar, Inc. (Nasdaq: ZIP), the world’s leading car sharing network, today announced the launch of its highly anticipated Android™ mobile application as a public beta test. The app is available for download in beta format at www.zipcar.com/android and continues to expand Zipcar’s suite of mobile tools and services for its members. The public beta launch enables thousands of members to test the new mobile app, and provide robust feedback directly to Zipcar to ensure the final product offers members a powerful, seamless mobile experience.
(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110505/NE95323-b )
Zipcar’s new Android application allows members to search for and reserve Zipcars by time, location and vehicle type. Members can use the application to view available Zipcars on a map, get directions to the vehicle location and extend or cancel a reservation. The application can also be used to honk the horn to locate a Zipcar, as well as lock and unlock the vehicle after scanning the Zipcard into the reservation. Non-members can download the app to search for vehicles and vehicle locations, learn more about Zipcar and initiate the membership application process.
“We offer car ownership, one hour at a time and we are dedicated to pushing easy-to-use, self-service innovations through the entire spectrum of our service. The beta launch of our Android app, demonstrates our continued commitment to delivering the best member experience in the category,” said Zipcar Chairman and CEO Scott Griffith. “We conducted a member study inDecember 2010, and found that more than 90 percent of Zipsters use smartphones, with a large increase in the share of Android-powered devices compared to prior studies. The launch of this public beta gives us the opportunity to learn from thousands of members using a wide variety of Android devices to gather feedback on their user experience. The creation of the new Android app is the latest step we’ve taken to ensure the Zipcar experience aligns with the communication tools and mobile lifestyle choices of our members.”
With the introduction of its Android app, Zipcar is adding to its collection of mobile applications and services that intuitively work with members through all stages of the reservation process using a variety of mobile devices. In addition to the new Android application, the collection includes Zipcar’s iPhone® application – recognized by Time Magazine as one of the “Best Travel Gadgets of 2009″ and one of the “50 Best iPhone Apps in 2011” – as well as a mobile website, which can be used on Blackberry® devices and smartphones to make, extend or change reservations and an interactive voice response call center which automatically recognizes members and their reservation status, and dynamically changes the options based on where members are in their reservation experience. Zipcar also offers two-way SMS texting, allowing the vehicle to proactively reach out to members during their reservation via their mobile device to manage their reservation, including instant reservation extension.
Zipcar for Android requires Android OS 2.1 or higher. The beta version of the application is available for download atwww.zipcar.com/android or can be downloaded directly on an Android-powered device by searching for “Zipcar” in the Android Market. Members can visit www.zipcar.com/android/faqs with any questions regarding Zipcar for Android, and can also send feedback directly through the application. Once all testing is complete, a final version of the app will be available for download. For more information on Zipcar, visit www.zipcar.com.