Bitcoin wallet Coinbase is updating its iOS and Android apps so that users can link their bank accounts to the app and buy and sell Bitcoin more easily. The startup also wants to give users free bits.
When you create a new account on Coinbase, it will now automatically send you 100 bits (or roughly $0.02 according to recent Bitcoin prices).
The app is also allowing users in the U.S. and certain jurisdictions in Europe to connect their bank account to the app so they can buy Bitcoin instantly.
Android users got some more detailed updates, like the ability to link your Google contacts to the app. The Coinbase app now supports older Android devices going back as far as Gingerbread.
Today’s update is really geared at getting users to transact Bitcoin more. Giving users money to play with, however little, encourages them to spend it or send it to a friend. Most people with Bitcoin hold onto it, because of its high value. That doesn’t help the Bitcoin ecosystem and also incites price fluctuation. It’s an issue that plagues the industry at large, and until more people start using Bitcoin, it’s one that isn’t going away anytime soon.