Getaround, the peer-to-peer car-sharing service, announced a bunch of news today, including a new way for car owners to rent their cars out for an extended period of time, such as when they are backpacking overseas or on a military deployment.
As part this new longer-term sharing program, which is called Getaway, the company has also released a feature called Instant Rental that allows people to get access to a shared car instantly through its in-car technology known as the Getaround Carkit.
Finally, the startup has raised a substantial Series A round of funding from an impressive group of investors, including Marissa Mayer, Yahoo’s new CEO, as well as the venture firm of Google’s former CEO, Eric Schmidt.
While demographers and marketing executives may argue over how to define generations, they agree about the impact that Generation Y -- no matter which set of age parameters you use -- is having on communications technology, ecommerce, and the media.
It’s huge, as several recent reports document.
For example, a recent study from Barkley reports that Millennials aged 16-34:
- Watch much less TV than other Americans (26 percent v. 47 percent).
- But watch many more TV shows on laptops (42 percent v. 18 percent), and other devices.
- Are much more likely to be influenced by their friends about where to shop, etc. (70 percent v. 45 percent).
- Like to check out brands on social media sites more than older Americans (53 percent v. 36 percent).
- Like brands more if on social media sites (33 percent v. 17 percent).
When Jessica Scorpio uses the word “overpopulation," chances are she's talking about cars, not people.
“There are a billion cars on the planet today, and if we don’t do something, in 20 years there will be two billion,” says the Getaround co-founder. “And at any minute, 92 percent of those cars are sitting empty – only 8 percent are being used.”
Getaround is a company on a mission to change all that. Like Airbnb, Zaarly, and other peer-to-peer (p2p) marketplaces, Getaround is an example of how collaborative consumption can have a transformative effect on the way we live our lives and share our resources with one another.