Coin, a startup out of California, has announced their first product: an all-in-one credit card payment system that will let the user switch which credit card or account they want to use at any given time.
At first glance, it just looks like a thin, black card with a digital display, the same size as a credit card. But it is an impressive little device that accesses up to eight different credit, debit, membership or debit cards at once.
Users can quickly switch between cards at will, then swipe it through any regular card reading payment machine at retailers around the world. The display screen shows the last four digits, expiration and CVV (security) number of whatever card is currently selected.
Such devices have been talked about for years, but most advances in payment systems have been related to mobile apps. Everyone seems to be scrambling to create their own.
Coin is something different altogether. It does connect to the user’s mobile phone, however. If it is ever outside of range of the user’s smartphone, an alert will sound. This is to protect against possibly leaving it behind somewhere, or theft.
This adds a bit of security to the device, though some consumers are sure to be a bit leery about having all of their cards in a single place. The same concerns have been raised time and again when speaking about mobile payment apps.
It was actually a payment app that sparked the idea for Coin. Founder and CEO Kanishk Parashar worked for both eBay and PayPal, and released Square Wallet.
We released the app and got a ton of downloads, but there were no payments going through our system, he explained in an interview with CNET.
Soon enough, we realized there were no merchants using it and so there were no consumers using it.
Right now the only thing I think about is delivering these and having them function.
They hope that Coin does quite a bit better, being the most advanced multi-card on a market ripe for combined payment solutions.
Anyone interested in picking one of these up can pre-order it now for $50. That is half off of the regular price that will be initiated during its release in 2014, of $100. An interesting tactic to ensure plenty of people buy Coin in the first round of releases.
Source: The Verge