Hobbitses (and humans) will all be wanting one of these all-in-one digital credit card gizmos since they can’t get their hands on “the ring”.
Falling easily for the fifty percent off hype, I already pre-ordered mine. Since they won’t start shipping until Summer 2014, I may not even have it in time for our summer family vacation.
You could order yours (and pay for it immediately) by clicking here before December 13 or so, assuming they don’t “run out” of the “limited quantities”.
What does it do?
The Coin stores the swipe information from credit cards, debit cards, gift cards, membership cards, probably most any mag stripe card that’s normally swiped or usable in a dip style card reader.
You’ll attach the included scanner to your Android or iOS device, likely your phone, and swipe the card. The information is stored on the Coin servers, with NO limit to the number of cards.
If you decide to shuffle the cards on your Coin, you’ll need an Internet connection to do so.
Once in your phone, you can load up to 8 cards at a time. This limitation may be a deal breaker for some, especially if you don’t get in at the $50 price and have to pony up a hundo. For me, it’s no biggie, I have more than 8 cards, but I don’t carry more than 8 unless I’m headed to Vegas with my casino cards.
Pretty cool, right? It would be cooler if the cards loaded into the Coin actually DID float above it, but I’m pretty sure they don’t.
Don’t Leave Me
As a security feature, you can essentially tether your Coin to your Android or iOS phone.
If you’re a doofus and leave your Coin where you last paid for something, your phone will yell at you once you get out of bluetooth range.
Should the Coin be out of contact for longer than a period of time you select, it will lobotomize itself temporarily until it regains contact with your phone.
The Coin is the same size as a regular credit card.
The small display offers enough information to make sure you have the right card and get you through transactions that need a visible CVV/CVC code.
Is It Worth $100?
I’m not sure the Coin is worth $100 to me, if it wasn’t cool technology that makes a lot of sense. The $50 price point is certainly twice as attractive.
If I used a bunch of different cards more often, the benefit of carrying a Coin instead of multiple cards would go way up. I imagine there will be some resistance in some places to the fact it isn’t a “regular card”, as in “Do you have a regular card instead of this thing, sir?”
One of the major kickers is that the Coin has a non replaceable and non rechargeable battery. So, once the battery dies, the Coin is an unusable piece of plastic. Coin estimates with “normal” 10-20 swipes a day (wow!), the battery will survive two years. If we use that number, and you pay $100 for a Coin, it works out to $4.17 a month for your Coin.
Of course if you buy it before the offer expires, that drops to a little over 2 bucks a month.
The Coin website is onlycoin.com