Getaround: The Future of Car-Sharing

Instead of sitting in a driveway, your car could be a shared resource.

Getaround CEO Sam Zaid

Zipcar, the first car-sharing company in the United States, has been around for 11 years. But the company had a net loss of $14.7 million in 2010. Getaround, a San Francisco-based peer-to-peer startup, may have a more sustainable vision of the future of car-sharing. Instead of owning, maintaining, and operating its own fleet of cars (which is how Zipcar works), Getaround owns no vehicles, which may help it avoid problems like those that plague Zipcar.

Getaround is cool not just because of its novelty. At a TechCrunch Disrupt event earlier this year, Getaround unveiled three awesome things that help Americans share their rides. The Getaround CarKit was one of the most intriguing. The kit combines “a keyless remote, GPS, and Wi-Fi,” said Sam Zaid, founder and CEO of Getaround, at the event. It’s the “first ever device designed to securely share your access to your car using only your smart phone.” By installing the kit into your car, you allow Getaround’s network, or a smaller group of drivers, to have access to your vehicle. It's all done via smartphone. A Getaround app locks and unlocks both car and trunk, allowing lenders to enter cars, find the key, and start driving. It's got the practical bases covered, too: Insurance for Getaround comes courtesy of Berkshire Hathaway.

That safety net helps Getaround toward its goal of solving "car overpopulation" in the United States. Every day in America, 250 millions cars are parked and unused, said Zaid. If Getaround could get 1 million "shared" cars on the road, it would neutralize 10 million privately-owned vehicles and potentially get 48 billion pounds of carbon dioxide pollution out of the air. While 1 million cars seems like an awful lot, it’s not impossible. In the first day of its public launch in May, Getaround signed-up about 1,600 users. That’s close to 20 percent of Zipcar’s 8,500 car fleet, which took 11 years to build.

Zipcar’s co-founder Robin Chase and Mobivia Groupe launched a personal car-sharing service called Buzzcar in France earlier this year. Perhaps U.S. Zipcar is headed in the same direction as Getaround.

Photo (cc) via Flickr user TechCrunch.


Some beauty pageants, like the Miss America competition, have done away with the swimsuit portions of the competitions, thus dipping their toes in the 21st century. Other aspects of beauty pageants remain stuck in the 1950s, and we're not even talking about the whole "judging women mostly on their looks" thing. One beauty pageant winner was disqualified for being a mom, as if you can't be beautiful after you've had a kid. Now she's trying to get the Miss World competition to update their rules.

Veronika Didusenko won the Miss Ukraine pageant in 2018. After four days, she was disqualified because pageant officials found out she was a mom to 5-year-old son Alex, and had been married. Didusenko said she had been aware of Miss World's rule barring mother from competing, but was encouraged to compete anyways by pageant organizers.

Keep Reading Show less

One mystery in our universe is a step closer to being solved. NASA's Parker Solar Probe launched last year to help scientists understand the sun. Now, it has returned its first findings. Four papers were published in the journal Nature detailing the findings of Parker's first two flybys. It's one small step for a solar probe, one giant leap for mankind.

It is astounding that we've advanced to the point where we've managed to build a probe capable of flying within 15 million miles from the surface of the sun, but here we are. Parker can withstand temperatures of up to 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit and travels at 430,000 miles per hour. It's the fastest human-made vehicle, and no other human-made object has been so close to the sun.

Keep Reading Show less
via Sportstreambest / Flickr

Since the mid '90s the phrase "God Forgives, Brothers Don't" has been part of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point's football team's lexicon.

Over the past few years, the team has taken the field flying a black skull-and-crossbones flag with an acronym for the phrase, "GFBD" on the skull's upper lip. Supporters of the team also use it on social media as #GFBD.

Keep Reading Show less