Amazon follows MiKandi’s footsteps, launches virtual currency

Amazon CoinsAmazon announced today its own virtual currency system called Amazon Coins. In true Amazon fashion, the company is going big by giving away “tens of millions of dollars” when the virtual currency launches in May. Amazon Coins can be used to buy apps, on in-app purchases, and games on the Kindle Fire. The coins will be available in the US only at first and will not be available for subscriptions. Customers who do not wish to buy apps with Amazon Coins can still purchase outright with credit cards.

We love virtual currency

MiKandi is happy to welcome Amazon to the virtual currency world. When we were rebuilding our app store 2 years ago, we thought long and hard about how to tackle payments. Being a tech company that sells adult content, many services were restricted. From newsletters to payment options, our usual course of action was to build it ourselves. On top of that, at the time it was very hard for developers to make money in the Android Market compared to iTunes. Something wasn’t working and we were dead set of figuring out what that was.

We came to the conclusion that we had to think about this problem differently. The question we found ourselves asking, often, is: How do you build an app store that exceeds the current options and really resonates with consumers? We looked to the gaming industry for leadership and discovered that consumers understand and accept points-based systems with rewards and purchases. From an app store’s point of view, virtual currency makes it easy to provide customers with outstanding customer service. Download an app you really don’t like? We can simply refund your MiKandi Gold for you to spend on something you do. No hassle, no delay. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. That, coupled with our industry leading customer service, has led to our remarkable chargeback rates, something that has plagued the adult industry since the advent of online purchases. Our chargeback rates are so low, we’d hazard a guess that it would make non-virtual currency supported app stores raise their eyebrows and stroke their chins.

Imitation is the best form of flattery

We have to ask, “What took you so long, Amazon?” When MiKandi launched MiKandi Gold, our virtual currency system for paid apps back in 2010, we were the first virtual currency powered mobile app store. A few months later, we launched full support of KandiBilling to Android developers, our in-app billing API, 1 day before Google Android. There’s something to be said for small teams- we move fast. Our mommies taught us to share our software, Amazon. Next time, ask us and we’ll let you play with our toys.

Seriously.

Galaxy S II: “The Next Big Thing”

And by the way, it’s only a penny on Amazon.

Happy Thanksgiving!!

MiKandi interview with GeekWire.com

This week, MiKandi co-founders Jesse Adams and Jennifer McEwen had a conversation with GeekWire.com about our app market, the iBoobs controversy, pornography and Apple, the launch of the Amazon Appstore, AT&T’s acquisitions of TMobile and what we think that means for AT&T Android customers.

Below are some highlights:

Q: Most of the stores ban adult apps, including the new Amazon Appstore. It’s an interesting philosophical discussion. Is it a good thing or a bad thing that the major platforms restrict pornography?

Adams: The great thing about Android is that even if Amazon doesn’t want to sell adult content, the Android Marketplace doesn’t want to sell it, at least the platform allows third-party stores to sell more adult experiences. That’s the big difference. Your phone is very personal. It’s going to be the way most adults connect to the world, over any other device very soon. Even if the other app stores start to offer it, developers really choose app stores as partners, not just as an app store operator. There’s other things they’re looking for more than just being able to sell adult content — partners that will promote and market the apps, and not just treat it as a back alleyway store like adult novelty shops were for a very long time.

Q: You were the focus of a veiled comment from Steve Jobs — he referred to the fact that on Android there is even a porn app store. That was not a good thing in his mind. Was his comment a good or bad thing for you?

McEwen: Oh, that was an awesome thing. We got 10,000 downloads of our app store in 12 hours that day. It was amazing. We couldn’t believe our luck. Also, it made us a conversation starter for the argument between an open OS and a closed OS. We’re the extreme testament of what you can do, and the freedom that you get. We are actually very proud to be part of that.

Mosey on over to GeekWire.com for the full article.

Introducing the world’s first app MARKET for adults

Last week, Apple hit yours truly with a cease and desist over our use of the term App Store. And just this week, Apple hit Amazon suit over their use of the term “Appstore” (too close to “app” space “store” for Apple’s tastes). Amazon gave Apple the proverbial finger and launched the Amazon Appstore this week any way.

Our pockets aren’t as deep as Amazon’s (although you can help us out with that by using your MiKandi Gold to buy some apps), so today we’re introducing you to MiKandi- the world’s first app market for adults.

Microsoft is currently challenging Apple’s trademark of the term. While  it’s not worth it for us to fight Apple’s legal team over this by ourselves, perhaps we can file an amicus brief to Microsoft’s case.

Microsoft, Amazon- you know how to reach us. ;)

Hollatcha app market!

Link Love: Android activations, Stern gets on the Android train, and more

Who is Eric J? – Phandroid

Over 300,000 Android phones are being activated each day – Gizmodo

Amazon Web Services attains Level 1 PCI compliance – TMCnet.com

Top 10 fastest-rising queries of 2010 - Tech Crunch

Howard Stern re-ups with Sirius XM, finally coming to Android app – Android Central