Take a look at your wallet. How many debit cards, credit cards and loyalty cards do you have? If it's anything like mine it is probably bursting at the seams with an inch or more of plastic cards. Reach the checkout in a store and you may well have ended up red-faced as you rummage for the right payment and loyalty card. With Coin, all of this could come to an end. The idea of a catch-all replacement that combines multiple cards into one is not new, but thus far solutions have taken the form of mobile apps. Coin is different -- this is a real card that acts as many.
Coins have a tendency to weigh down your pockets, but this Coin is a single lightweight unit. The card features an integrated display which you can use to view the last four digits of a stored card along with the expiration data and CVV so you, and the person you hand the card to, knows which of your stored cards you are using. You may well have used a mobile app that replaces loyalty cards, and Coin is taking this idea to the next level.
In fact, there is a mobile app (for iOS and Android to start with, with the possibility of a Windows Phone version if there is sufficient demand), and it is used to manage the physical Coin card. You can load an unlimited number of your cards into the app, and you will then need to transfer them to the Coin using a supplied dongle. Up to eight cards can be stored on the Coin at any one time, and you can cycle through them with a quick button press -- this is where the display comes in handy.
The mobile apps serves a handy second purpose -- it can alert you if you are parted from your Coin. This is helpful if you accidentally leave the Coin at the checkout, but there is also the option of deactivating the card after a pre-defined length of time in case it is stolen.
It's difficult to believe, but Coin really is just about the same size as a regular credit card. If you were thinking that this is a chunky piece of kit, think again"it will slip into your wallet beautifully as it is a mere 0.84 mm thick. Incredibly, it can even be used in an ATM.
Coin is due to hit the market some time in 2014, priced at $100. If you're keen to get your hands on one as soon as possible, and like the idea of saving some money, there are a limited number of Coins available for just $50. You might usually feel that it's good to have a heavy moneybag, but Coin lightens your wallet in a very good way.
Want to learn a little more? Check out the Coin website, as well as the introductory video: