Amazon Just Made Its Own Currency, Amazon Coins

Amazon has announced a new way for Kindle Fire users to buy stuff: Amazon Coins are a virtual currency that will come out in May and work for all app and in-app purchases on the Kindle Fire.

Amazon Coins will function exactly the same as real money, and developers will still get their standard cut. Amazon thinks it will help drive more business, but the idea is limited to the US and select European countries where the Kindle Fire is officially available. It could prove to be a convenient addition that allows users to set up a Coins purse without allowing access to another payment method.

And since Amazon will obviously never stop accepting real money -- unlike virtual currency merchants like Xbox Live -- you don't have quite the locked-in headache here either. [Yahoo]