Kindle Fire owners in the US have had 500 new Amazon Coins - worth a total of $5 - deposited into their accounts today to mark the launch of the virtual currency for purchasing apps, games and in-app items.
Amazon says that its new currency is an easy way for Kindle fire users to purchase apps and in-app items, while for developers it's another opportunity to drive traffic and downloads.
Customers can get discounts of up to $10 for purchasing Coins in bulk and Amazon Appstore developers earn their standard 70% revenue share on purchases using the currency, which is to the US dollar, with one Coin equivalent to one US cent.
Mike George, VP, apps and games, Amazon, says: "We will continue to add more ways to earn and spend Coins on a wider range of content and activities - today is Day One for Coins."
In June last year, Facebook ditched its Credits virtual currency platform in favour of a system which allows developers to be paid in a local currency of their choosing.
Facebook said the roll-out of Credits had slowed uptake of gaming applications, requiring users to switch in and out of multiple currency options - from US dollars, to Credits and back again to in-game currencies - and adding new layers of friction to the monetisation of developer applications.