One year after the debut of its wireless Web initiative, Progressive Casualty Insurance Co. has added new enhancements to the program. Users can now get access to vehicle crash test ratings, a "vehicle recall" search capability and financial calculators that can help consumers determine costs of leasing a car as opposed to buying. Mayfield Village, Ohio-based Progressive was the first carrier to use Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) technology, enabling Web-enabled cell phone and personal digital assistant (PDA) users to access its Web site. Earlier this year, www.progressive.com became the first insurance Web site available on the Sprint PCS Wireless Web and the Nextel Wireless Web. When Progressive launched its wireless site in September 2000, consumers were able to use Web-enabled cell phones and PDAs to contact Progressive-with single-touch dialing-to get a quote, buy a policy, locate nearby independent agents by ZIP code and contact the company to report claims. By the end of last year it added features that enabled customers to pay an insurance premium around the clock by using PDA devices. Then in March, consumers could pay their premiums via cell phone.
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