The payment processing start-up, Pinn has topped the retail segment of the recently concluded Plug and Play accelerator cohort demo day. Founded by Will Summerlin and Nick Auriana with Kyle Crews as a lead engineer, the company enables bitcoin and fiat payments for merchants. Pinn’s unique point of sale system doesn’t require smartphone or wallet for making payments.
According to the company’s description, Pinn is a retail payment and authentication system built around the Internet of things. It uses a proprietary proximity technology to enable a single point of action payment process. In order to pay over a Pinn payment network, one has to just key in their unique PIN into the Pinn POS terminal.
Even though Pinn was not the only bitcoin and Blockchain based start-up in the Plug and Play cohort, it was the only one to include bitcoin in the retail segment. In order to use Pinn, the customer has to be registered on the platform. Once registered, he/she can link his bank account, credit card or bitcoin wallet to his/her Pinn account. The account will be connected to the user’s mobile device and a unique Pin number will be assigned to the user. While at the counter, the proximity technologies used in Pinn locates and confirms the proximity of the registered device in the vicinity to enable transactions over the Pinn POS. Currently the Pinn POS runs on an Android powered tablet.
Apple’s iBeacon Bluetooth Low energy POS technology is also one of the proximity technologies used by Pinn. The fiat currency transactions on Pinn include ACH (Automated Clearing House) transactions and direct debit transfers.
Pinn offers a single window for merchants to accept both fiat currency and bitcoins. In spite of increasing bitcoin usage, payments with fiat currency is still in domination. With Pinn, merchants don’t have to use multiple POS applications for fiat currency and bitcoins. It will also help in Bitcoin adoption, as every merchant with Pinn POS can accept bitcoin payments by default. It will also be an attractive option for tourist attractions as foreign tourists will be able to pay for goods in bitcoin instead of fiat currency, thereby avoiding unnecessary forex charges which is usually applicable while paying with or exchanging foreign currency.