MintChip for iOS Launches: Digital Currency Accepted at Stores via…QR Code

In an effort to ride the digital cash trend nanoPay Corporation has announced today its own take of a mobile wallet: MintChip. Available for both iOS and Android, MintChip allows Canadians in the Toronto area to send and receive digital cash with friends and to shop at a limited list of merchants by scanning a QR code.

You may recall MintChip was first started by the Royal Canadian Mint in 2012, but was acquired by fintech nanoPay last December.

You’ll need to register a MintChip account first, which requires your first name, last name, email, mobile number and password. A confirmation code will be sent to your smartphone to verify your identity, plus an email confirmation link must be clicked-through on your device, which will then launch the iOS app. A one-time bonus transfer of $2 is ongoing right now for new sign-ups.

Once you’ve gone through the multiple registration steps, you can add a bank account (you’ll need to provide full chequing account details) or credit card (it can scan your card details via iPhone camera) — the good news is that all of the big five major banks support it — and that’s it.

You can start shopping or send cash to friends or family with a transfer limit of $100 for a single transaction, $250 per day, and $1500 per week.

Despite touting its security as a digital currency, the iOS version of MintChip doesn’t support Touch ID or passcode security to protect the app. Also— as expected—it doesn’t support tap to pay either at merchants, as NFC on the iPhone is off-limits to developers.

Mintchip 01 Mintchip

MintChip tries to lure users with great deals such $2 credit for registering an account, 20% cash back on all purchases (up to total value of $50,) and the possibility to win MintChip cash prizes for using the app.

MintChip transactions are encrypted and processed instantaneously, requiring no third-party processing or settlement, as it requires that to top up the MintChip account, so the money has already been cleared before you walk toward the cash register to pay with MintChip.

The QR-code based digital wallet is currently available at the following Liberty Village locations:

– Brazenhead
– Bugigattolo Kitchen
– Ciao Europa Café
– For the Love of Cake
– Freshii
– Home Hardware
– Joker Cafe
– Liberty Village Rotisserie
– Merci mon Ami
– Nutrition House
– Raaw Japanese Sushi
– Smooth Wax Bar
– Suzanne Gardner Flowers

Implementing Apple Pay for a credit card or debit card is much simpler and paying with the iPhone maker’s mobile wallet is more seamless. Apple Pay has better privacy too, as the company doesn’t know what you’re buying and merchants don’t get your information.

While MintChip sounds like a good idea for free person-to-person transfers, it definitely is more complex to setup and use versus Apple Pay.

What do you think? Will you use this QR-code based payment or Apple Pay if you leave your wallet at home?

Technology enthusiast, rocker, biker and writer of iPhoneinCanada.ca. Follow me on Twitter or contact me via email: istvan@iphoneincanada.ca