has announced that they're creating a new virtual currency, Amazon Coins, for their customers to buy apps and make in-app purchases. The Verge has a great article looking at potential reasons why Amazon wants to get into the digital minting business. These reasons range from mundane (other game developers have their own currencies and it's a financially smart decision for them) to the disturbing ("proprietary currencies have lots of advantages for their issuers, especially when the issuer is attempting to build a proprietary economy"). We'll find out more when Amazon launches Amazon Coins in May, but I urge you to read The Verge piece, which includes a reference to "standalone virtual currencies such as Flooz and Beenz," which "flopped miserably." Flooz and Beenz!