Amazon, best known for dominating the online retail space rather than its payment technologies, has announced that itâ€™s now accepting a new form of payment.
One that itâ€™s created itself.
Known as Amazon Coins, this digital monetary system looks very much like a replacement for monetary-value gift cards. However, they actually allow you to buy products at discount if you invest into its new payment method.
While you can only use Amazon Coins to buy products on Amazon, use in the Amazon Appstore and make purchases on Kindle Fire devices. You can even use it to buy items in an app or in a game, it really is more than just a gift voucher tied to Amazon.
This is clearly a smart move by Amazon in terms of a business move for retaining customers and getting their money before theyâ€™ve bought anything. But, just like Amazon CEO Jeff Bezosâ€™ purchase of Washington Post, thereâ€™s a plan in place for Amazon Coins.
Personally I think theyâ€™re aiming to slip into the world of payments a little more tactfully.
Instead of dominating the payments space and trying to make use of a digital currency in the process, they want to spread Amazon Coins out to other retailers sites in due time, make their ‘currencyâ€™ an attractive and secure method of payment across multiple websites.
And, because itâ€™s had a stable footing with Amazonâ€™s own products, meaning app developers wonâ€™t have to change anything about their app to accept the payments from Amazon Coins, it sets Amazon up to roll out similar effortless implementation to other retailers or online services.
Ideally theyâ€™d like to keep customers on Amazon and buying Amazon products. But they know thatâ€™s not going to happen, and this way it means theyâ€™ll still get sales while helping facilitate payments on another site.
Obviously this is all wistful optimism at what Amazon has planned, but what do you think its move into a new way to pay is about?