Saturday, 2 July 2011

Coming Soon: Bitcard - Bitcoins In The Palm of Your Hand!

Well, if this doesn't help bitcoin go mainstream, I don't know what will.

Much media and online commentary on bitcoin has painted it to a passing fad, used thus far by computer geeks and perverts. Well, yes, it has been used to buy drugs and pay for porn but, last I heard, so has every major fiat currency out there. A "concern" by some is that it isn't tangible and that most people will not be able to understand how to use it securely without learning about encryption using memorable 20 character passwords.

Well, have no fear, Bitcard is here! Almost.

In roughly 2 weeks' time, the first series of bitcard, series A2011, will be available for order. This first series is limited with just 100 units (i.e. 100 cards) available. From my understanding, the idea is that Bitcard will serve as a pre-paid card where credit card sales and other consumer cash for product payment methods will be made possible using bitcoins.

Bitcard is designed from the ground up to meet two primary needs: to provide a quick, secure, and convenient physical means for person to person, person to business or business to business trade; and to bring digital currency to the palm of your hand as a personal wallet which allows you to access your bitcoins quickly and easily from any internet connected computer.

Designed with trade security in mind, you'll be able to order your bitcard with as much or as little bitcoin as you desire. Each card is individually "minted" with a unique wallet, hand loaded on an isolated system and physically secured to prevent physical access to the flash media with a tamper evident security seal. Each seal is printed with the mint date, unique card ID, a QR code to enable balance verification of an untampered card from any QR capable device, and the bitcoin balance. As long as the seal is intact buyers and sellers alike can trade with confidence.

After the security seal is broken bitcard becomes even more valuable as a fully functional portable bitcoin wallet. Series A2011 is based on a custom form factor 1GB USB flash device ensuring cross platform compatibility and eliminating the need for uncommon extra hardware such as RFID, mag, or smart readers. Each device comes preloaded with cross-platform bitcoin clients and miners as well as encryption tools to ensure a lost card does not have to mean a lost balance. To ensure rapid usability each card is updated with the full block chain as of the mint date.

The sales website is still in development and prices are not firm yet, but anticipated pricing is as follows per current exchange rates.

BTC 0.3 Per Card Flat Fee
BTC Loading - 2% of load amount.

Sample - Bitcard with 1 BTC = 1.32BTC
Sample - Bitcard with 10 BTC = 10.50BTC
Sample - Bitcard with 100 BTC = 102.3BTC

Details on shipping with traceability or delivery verification is still to be confirmed.

Should bitcoin go mainstream, then, from a practical standpoint, retailers would use existing card processors to treat BTC as a foreign currency, in which case BTC would be handled like a payment in foreign funds exchanged at the card issuer's rate at the time of purchase.

Ideally, for this to really go mainstream, and some time soon, it would be an idea for regular folk, and particularly those new to bitcoin, to be able to purchase bitcards in fiat currency, just like you can purchase, say, a Travelex or other forex pre-paid card in your currency of choice. One step at a time though, I guess.

Check back in two weeks for details on the how and where to get your bitcard!

1 comment:

  1. Hey your site is great :) Finally a blog with Bitcoin news.