Zipcar going beta with new Android car-sharing app

While the Android market is predicted to finally outgrow Apple's iTunes App Store sometime this year, many mobile software developers still focus on iOS apps before turning their attention to other platforms. That's exactly what Zipcar did with its iPhone app (which, for those keeping score, was released in September 2009). Those who've been wanting to get in on the car-sharing action with their Droid or Nexus S can now finally do so, at least in beta format. Can't have things be too easy for Froyo folks, now can we?
Similar to the iPhone app, the new Android Zipcar program allows members to find and reserve vehicles (you can refine your search by time, where you're at or going to be and type of vehicle). Important for the chronically late: you can also extend your current reservation through your phone. As with the iPhone app, you can now honk your Zipcar's horn using your phone. Life is good.

If you'd like to test out the app and have Android OS 2.1 or higher, you can get it direct from Zipcar here or just search for Zipcar in the market. Users of other mobile platforms (i.e., Blackberries), can, as always, use the Zipcar mobile site to access a lot of the same features. Probably not the honking thing though. That wouldn't be very businesslike.

[Source: Zipcar]
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Android App is Latest Addition to Zipcar's Suite of Mobile Tools and Services; Public Beta Allows for Member Feedback to Deliver Powerful User Experience

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 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.

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 in December 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 at or can be downloaded directly on an Android-powered device by searching for "Zipcar" in the Android Market. Members can visit 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

About Zipcar
Zipcar is the world's leading car sharing network with more than 560,000 members and over 8,000 vehicles in urban areas and college campuses throughout the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. Zipcar offers more than 30 makes and models of self-service vehicles by the hour or day to residents and businesses looking for an alternative to the high costs and hassles of owning a car. More information is available at

Photos and b-roll footage are available for media purposes at

Zipcar and the Zipcar logo are trademarks of Zipcar, Inc.

Android is a trademark of Google Inc. Use of this trademark is subject to Google Permissions.

The trademark Blackberry is owned by Research In Motion Limited and is registered in the United States and may be pending or registered in other countries. Zipcar is not endorsed, sponsored, affiliated with or otherwise authorized by Research In Motion Limited.

iPhone is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.

This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, including statements with respect to the number of members who may download the beta version of application and our ability to offer a final version of the application. Among the factors that could cause our actual results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements include our ability to provide satisfactory performance, reliability and availability of our reservation systems, websites and network infrastructure and to maintain high levels of member satisfaction and loyalty and other risks detailed in Zipcar's final prospectus related to our initial public offering filed pursuant to Rule 424b under the Securities Act with the with the Securities and Exchange Commission on April 14, 2011. All forward-looking statements reflect our expectations only as of the date of this release and should not be relied upon as reflecting our views, expectations or beliefs at any date subsequent to the date of this release.

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