Signing up for Xinja was a mixed bag. I started thinking it was going to be a waitlist, like the others. Then found out that Xinja had launched a product, which is exciting. Then realised it was a going to be a waitlist after all.
The Xinja landing page opens with the message: How money should be. They go on to make it quite clear that they are not a bank yet but are on that journey.
Beyond that bit, there’s actually very little information on the homepage about what Xinja is planning to do. Unlike the Douugh landing page, which had clear information around their features, Xinja spends the bulk of their time trying to be cool.
Amusingly enough, it’s looking like Xinja would not agree with anything I had to say about neobanks trying to be cool.
Xinja will be a prepaid card
The product page talks about Xinja’s launch plans – which include an app, obviously, and a prepaid card. The value of the prepaid card is that it doesn’t charge international transaction fees, currency conversion fees or ATM withdrawl fees. While this sounds great, it’s nothing more than anybody else and at this point is really the bare minimum.
Light on features but a great travel card
There’s a high-level list of features that includes tracking your expenses and being able to split bills but that’s about all that we have in terms of how Xinja plans to change our lives.
What they are definitely solving for though is the travel use-case. Unlike other pre-loaded debit travel cards, Xinja will be able to connect with Google Pay. This means I wouldn’t have to even carry the card around and can restrict spends to the travel budget. And with (as advertised) immediate top-ups, you can transfer money across should you need it in a pinch.
So while other neobanks are starting with actual bank accounts, Xinja’s taken the MVP approach and is getting their product into user’s hands as quickly as possible. This way, users can get used to the app before Xinja even becomes a bank. I like the approach of user-testing their product so that when they become a bank and go public, their app would be well-tested.
Xinja: No Android app
There is no good conceivable reason to not launch both apps together but here we are.
The signup process for the Android waitlist was clean and simple with just one spot of laziness. Apparently you can sign up for Xinja even if you were born yesterday.
I guess I’m going to have to wait a week to get my hands on the Xinja card. And then I have no idea how long more before I can use it because Xinja is putting Android users second to Apple.
What a great start for Australia’s first neobank product.