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Is Coin the one payment card to rule them all?

J.D. Sartain | Feb. 3, 2014
In an era when consumers' wallets are filled with credit cards, rewards cards, gift cards and other cards, Coin aims to be the universal payment option of choice. But can it stand out in a growing market of smartphone apps, digital wallets and NFC technology?

Coin is regularly priced at $100 per card, but preorders are now available for $50 plus $5 shipping and handling. The first batch is expected to ship this summer. Coin is water-resistant, but not waterproof, and the company says the device should last about two years. Neither magnets nor X-ray machines will damage Coin, the company says.

Uzureau says Coin, in its current form, will likely have a "pretty limited" impact on the payment industry and won't reach a tipping point until 2015, when the United States is expected to switch from magnetic stripe to EMV chip payment technology. According to Parashar, the current Coin doesn't support EMV, but future versions will.

"What would be interesting," Uzureau says, "is for Coin to explore how to align itself to the evolution of digital wallet solutions and their use of both local and networked security credentials — the so-called hybrid model."


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