How KIN works and where to buy it
Kik is a popular mobile messaging app and social media platform that can be used on iPhone and Android devices. Kin is the name of the app's affiliated cryptocurrency foundation and KIN is the token itself.
The currency was released following a September 2017 ICO which raised almost US$100 million. With the use of KIN in the Kik app designed to drive mainstream adoption, the goal is for KIN to become the main unit of account for a new digital economy.
If you want to know how to buy KIN tokens, keep reading.
Where to buy KIN in Australia
KIN can be purchased on these cryptocurrency exchanges:
How to buy KIN: A step-by-step guide
If you want to buy KIN tokens, you'll need to follow a few simple steps.
Step 1. Register for an account with an exchange that lists KIN
Compare the exchanges that list KIN in one or more currency pairs and choose the platform that meets your needs. You can then sign up for an account by providing your email address and creating a password, while some platforms will also require your personal details and proof of ID before allowing you to trade.
Remember to also enable 2-factor authentication on your account to provide extra security for your funds.
Step 2. Deposit funds into your account
There's currently no way to buy KIN tokens directly with Australian dollars, so you'll need to purchase your tokens using another cryptocurrency. Ether (ETH) and bitcoin (BTC) are the two currencies most commonly listed alongside KIN in trading pairs, so we'll use them for this example.
To transfer the funds into your account, look for the "Deposit" link from your crypto exchange dashboard and copy the relevant wallet address.
Step 3. Buy KIN
The final step is to navigate to the "Exchange" or "Markets" section on your chosen platform and search for the pair you want to trade, for example KIN/ETH. In the "Buy" box that appears, enter the amount you want to spend or the amount of KIN you want to buy. Remember to review the full details of the transaction, including the total cost, before clicking "Buy KIN".
How to sell KIN
If you want to sell your KIN tokens, the process for doing so is quite similar to that outlined in step 3. From the trading page on your exchange, look for the "Sell" box and specify the details of your transaction. Take a moment to review the specifics of the transaction before clicking "Buy KIN".
It's also worth pointing out that KIN is only listed in a limited range of currency pairs, so it may not be possible to directly exchange KIN for the currency you want.
Which wallets can I use to hold KIN?
KIN is an ERC20 token on the Ethereum network, so you'll need to find a wallet compatible with these types of tokens. For example, you can hold KIN in MyEtherWallet by adding it as a custom token. You can then link that wallet to a Ledger Nano S hardware wallet for extra-secure offline storage.
To add a custom token, follow these steps.
- First, check whether KIN is already available, as it may have been added recently. If so, you don’t need to go through these steps.
- On the “Send Ether & Tokens” page of MyEtherWallet, you’ll see a button labelled “Add Custom Tokens”. It’s in the “Token Balances” box. Click on that “Add Custom Tokens” button.
- You’ll now need to input an address, a symbol and a decimal. These will indicate the token that you want to add to your wallet. Go to https://ethplorer.io/ to find these.
- At ethplorer, search for the name of the token in the search bar. Add the listed address, symbol and decimal to the fields in MyEtherWallet.
- Where’s the address? The address is at the top of the page. It’s the long string of numbers and letters below the token name. It’s also in “Contract” under the Contract Information section.
- Where’s the symbol? This is just the currency symbol. It’s in the token information section.
- Where’s the decimal? The decimal is also in the token information section, labelled as “Decimals.” It will be a number from 1-18.
How does KIN work?
KIN is a general-purpose cryptocurrency for use in Kik’s everyday digital services. You might use KIN to tip someone that posts a joke, to buy pizza with an in-app pizzabot or simply send it to someone as a birthday present.
Or you might use it to amplify your own messages to reach a wider audience, to access or create VIP groups, reveal premium content or anything else you can think of.
According to the Kin Ecosystem Foundation, the currency is “designed specifically to bring people together in a new shared economy and will serve as the foundation for a decentralised ecosystem of digital services”. Kik is the first app to accept KIN, with the KIN wallet natively integrated into Kik.
What to consider before buying KIN
Cryptocurrencies are complicated and highly volatile, so it's important to develop an in-depth understanding of the factors that affect their value before you buy. If you're thinking of purchasing any KIN, make sure you consider the following:
- Supply. The total KIN supply limit is 10 trillion coins, so it's worth considering what effect this large amount of tokens may have on demand. At the time of writing (May 2018) the circulating supply of tokens was 756,097,560,976 KIN.
- 1 trillion - Distributed to users in the ICO.
- 3 trillion - Distributed to Kik, in equal quarterly instalments over 2.5 years (10 quarters).
- 6 trillion - Held by a smart contract that releases 20% of the remainder each year for perpetuity.
- KIN Rewards Engine. KIN tokens will be distributed as a daily reward to developers and digital services through the KIN Rewards Engine. This engine uses an algorithm designed to calculate a user's contribution to the overall ecosystem.
- User base. One of the major obstacles facing all cryptocurrencies is the ability to achieve widespread adoption. In its whitepaper, Kik claims 57% of which are in the 13-24 age bracket. By tapping into an active user base, KIN has the advantage of marketing to an engaged audience.
- Kik points. From 2014 to 2016 before the launch of KIN, Kik ran a test to find out whether its customers would use tokens on the platform. Kik tokens weren't blockchain-based and couldn't be traded outside the app, but by the conclusion of the experiment, up to two million Kik token transactions were taking place per day.
- Stellar fork. In May 2018, Kin announced plans to fork Stellar and create its own blockchain. The result will be a hybrid, multi-blockchain approach that will see KIN run on Ethereum and also on its own Stellar fork.
- Whitepaper. Want to know more about the KIN cryptocurrency and how it works? Check out the whitepaper.