Leading Australian bitcoin startup CoinJar has begun trialling Australia’s first bitcoin EFTPOS card, which co-founder and chief executive officer Asher Tan says is a “huge step” for adoption of the cryptocurrency in Australia.
Users open a CoinJar bitcoin wallet, activate the card, then they can set it up to automatically top up with an amount of Australian dollars they’re comfortable with. It effectively enables CoinJar users to use their Coinjar wallet funds in any store that accepts EFTPOS.
Customers can also manually top up their CoinJar Swipe if they prefer that to automation.
CoinJar teamed up with prepaid payments solution provider emerchants to develop the card.
“I think it’s a huge step in terms of answering the question, where can I spend and how can I use bitcoin,” Tan says.
“One of the biggest criticisms of bitcoin is that it is not widely accepted.
“We created Swipe because we simply wanted to make it easier for our customers to spend their bitcoin.
“We’ve been working on this for a while. We’ve working on ways where our users can get better coverage around Australia and this is a long-time coming.”
Some 100 CoinJar DNA members will receive their cards next week. The CoinJar team will take any feedback on board before making the cards publicly available by late October. To select those that would receive a card, CoinJar asked its users “What would you do with your CoinJar Swipe?” Answers ranged from paying bills to buying a sausage roll and iced coffee for lunch.
“Swipe demystifies bitcoin and makes it accessible to everyone through a secure platform,” he says.
“Our team is really excited about Swipe, and we look forward to receiving feedback from customers.”
CoinJar estimates bitcoin is being used by 500,000 Australians. Over the past 12 months the startup has processed more than $50 million worth of bitcoin transactions for more than 30,000 individual and business customers.
Customers can pre-register for further releases of the card here.