My Thoughts on Coin

I crave minimalism. So, Coin interests me, but I don’t think it’s for me. Here are some quick thoughts on Coin.

  • If you have more than one credit card, the easiest way to get down to carrying one card is cancel the other ones. I have two active1 cards: a debit card from my bank (which is accepted like a Visa card) and an American Express card which has a yearly cash back bonus (and important: I don’t carry a balance month-to-month, period).
  • If you use Coin and you find yourself at a place that has to imprint the credit card, you’re out of luck. Hope you brought some cash.
  • $100 or even $50 (the pre-launch sale price) seems high for this convenience. Especially if the card has to be replaced every 2 years because it runs on a non-rechargeable battery.
  • I’ll still need to carry my driver’s license; this isn’t for that.
  • I’ll still need to carry my transit card. It has a chip on it, so I don’t think it can be mimicked by Coin.
  • I’ll still need to carry my HID building access security card.

So, even if I were to buy one of these — effectively (at launch sale price) a $25/year (due to the battery lifespan) convenience fee — I’d still need a decent wallet to hold everything. I couldn’t get away with a slim phone card pocket case, for instance.

No, I think the future looks something more like using Passbook or even NFC… so, no physical cards. Bluetooth LTE identification for building access. A federal and state-approved method for presenting your identification through with phone. Maybe then you could just carry one card; one that serves as a backup in case you lose or damage your phone.

  1. I also carry a Simple card right now. I’m looking to switch from Chase, so either the Simple or the Chase debit card will be taken out of rotation depending on whether I switch or not. And I love Simple, but so far they don’t support a joint account very well. 


This article was published on November 15, 2013 6:07 PM.

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