TrustedCars (FLEX)–TrustedCars, an app-based rental agency out of Germany, is looking to disrupt the market of car ownership through a merging with cryptocurrency. The company announced the launch of their ICO FLEX, a token that will be the native currency for the application TrustedCars has built to facilitate simplistic, user-initiated car rentals.
Similar to Uber, the company is banking upon ubiquitous internet access and widespread smartphone use to catalyze disruption in a well-established industry. While the car rental business has long been a mainstay for vacationers and corporate jet-setters traveling abroad, TrustedCars has hit upon a much larger potential customer base: a replacement for long-term car ownership.
Fortune has reported that the average American car is only in use for 5% of its lifetime. TrustedCars is attempting to bring car ownership into the modern age, reducing both the waste generated by vehicles sitting in park, in addition to increasing the cost-efficiency for the average person having access to an automobile. Particularly in metropolitan areas, where car ownership is declining in favor of public transportation and ride-sharing, TrustedCars is giving customers the option–for the first time–to opt in or out of car ownership through short, week by week contracts.
The crux of TrustedCars’s business is model is simple: you make a weekly payment for your rental car, through the aforementioned FLEX token, that includes all of the necessities for driving such as insurance. This gives customers the opportunity for greater freedom than the typical rental agency, including allowing customers to make all transactions and legal commitments through a smartphone app. TrustedCars is also promoting the ability for consumers to swap vehicles at any time, meaning customers can adjust their rental car depending upon need. Prefer a fuel efficient vehicle for your weekly commute, but want something more adventurous on the weekends? TrustedCars is giving you the option.
“With our paperless end-to-end solution you can choose any car you want from the available inventory of participating car dealers, sign for it in the app and you are ready to go. Drive the car as long as you want and return it or swap for another car anytime. With no fixed costs or long-term contracts but for a low weekly payment including all expenses.”
TrustedCars has outlined four primary solutions they are offering to improve the experience of modern car driving:
- Commitment free. Drivers are held to weekly payments so long as they wish to drive the car. They also have the option of switching to another vehicle to better suit their needs and tastes.
- Paperless. Mobile function is going to be a key feature for TrustedCar, similar to the way Uber used their smartphone app to disrupt the ride sharing industry in less than a decade. TrustedCars is building upon the familiar feature of vehicle operation through phones, bringing car rentals into the digital age.
- Affordable. TrustedCars is an all-inclusive service, with insurance and other fees being wrapped into the weekly payment. The company is aiming to make the service affordable, thereby increasing the appeal over traditional rental agencies. Through the efficiency of cryptocurrency, TrustedCars is hoping to compete with the major players in the industry, relying upon existing agencies and possibly dealerships to recruit vehicles for the rental pool.
- Peace of mind. Although understated, a massive benefit to the TrustedCars user is the ability to have access to a vehicle on demand. Need to make an unexpected visit to a relative three states over? TrustedCars has a vehicle just a signature away. The modern age, driven by the innovation of cryptocurrency, is giving individuals access to resources when they need them, as opposed to contributing to monetary and material waste for unused vehicles.
FLEX Token and Improved Efficiency
Presumably, TrustedCars is relying upon the advancement of cryptocurrency, in addition to growing smartphone reliance, to drive the innovation of their company. While the ICO could be another empty pump by a company attempting to cash in on the cryptocurrency hype, FLEX seems like a token being built to last.
To begin, their business model is already established, and gives a legitimate reason for FLEX buying and spending. Most cryptocurrency development teams are engaged in an arms race of empty hype: they build a technology that is supposedly superior to the last, and entice investors through the promise of potential gains to be made when the world wakes up to their superior technology. TrustedCars has an already established platform in the car rental space, and is looking to cryptocurrency to improve upon their digital transaction efficiency. Crypto gives the app added features like security, transactional history and consensus with blockchain, and the ability to make free and instant payments.
It’s not clear what sort of properties the currency will have (ERC-20 token etc.) or if the company is intending FLEX to become a standalone crypto. As of now, FLEX is intended only for use as the medium of exchange on the TrustedCars platform, being the intermediary source between renter and supplier. However, given the decentralized nature of cryptocurrency, it’s possible the token could branch out to similar platforms, such as other rental-based applications.