Circle recently released its first native apps for both iOS and Android. These apps will act as critical companion to the web service that was launched several weeks ago, allowing customers to use native apps to make payments, send and request money, and instantly deposit and convert money between dollars and bitcoin.
Circle’s mobile apps focus on the core tasks in using digital money and provides the following features:
- Sending and requesting money using your phone’s Contact’s email addresses and Bitcoin addresses.
- Performing in-person transactions using QR Codes
- Instantly converting between dollars and bitcoin using linked bank accounts and cards.
Circle has focused highly on smartphone-specific features for enhancing the security of the digital payments, including leveraging Multi-Factor Authentication, using app-specific PIN Codes for quick access, and new OS-specific features like TouchID to make payments.
Circle is particularly looking forward to Android as a promising platform, both because of its feature completeness, and also because Android is becoming an important platform for finance on a worldwide basis. Low-cost Android phones are coming to markets like India, Indonesia, and Africa, where the vast majority of users don’t have bank accounts, and where digital currency services could become a critical new utility. While the initial release of the new apps is U.S. only, Circle’s apps would be available in more markets, languages and currencies later.
Circle has also tapped new features in the iPhone and iOS, such as TouchID, which can be used for securing the use of Circle. Other new aspects include use of new inter-app APIs, which enables the use of 1Password with Circle, for enhanced password security.