Apple recently changed their policy on virtual currency and the resulting impact is already being felt with the release of the first new Bitcoin enabled app called Coin Pocket. You can use this app to transfer currency and accomplish several other basic tasks related to Bitcoin.
I have never been a fan of Bitcoin but that is because for a long time I didn’t understand how to use it and I couldn’t imagine that the value was going to increase at the rate it did. While I still have my doubts, it seems that for the time being it is reaching more stable territory, and it has proven itself enough that Apple is willing to relax its fairly tight policy on its inclusion in apps.
Coin Pocket isn’t alone as a new app, with another called eGifter which allows you to use Bitcoin to purchase gift cards from over 200 different companies. None of these services are brand-new, but they are brand-new to iOS under the new developer policy. Native apps certainly have an advantage over previous workarounds such as web app solutions coded with HTML5. They can more easily access core iPhone features such as the camera, which can be useful for scanning QR codes, using notifications, and increased interface functionality.
It’s hard to say what the future holds for Bitcoin, but for now it seems that Apple has indeed opened the door for virtual currency in iOS and we can expect more apps to be released or re-released in the coming months. Perhaps the bigger question is whether or not you will jump on the Bitcoin bandwagon now that there are more app options popping up. I’m still in the maybe category.