Could cryptocurrencies really start to break into the world’s economy as a mainstream payment method?
So far, the notion of any cryptos becoming a mainstream currency has been played down with no concrete signs pointing towards the possibility of crypts becoming an accepted currency in retail stores. However, if you were a betting man or women, then you would certainly not be wrong to put your money down on a wager that gives odds on cryptocurrencies hitting the mainstream retail markets before 2025.
Recent reports within the crypto sphere are showing positive signs that are pointing towards making cryptos a mainstream method of payment thanks to Japan’s Ripple based MoneyTap app, Switzerland’s new crypto licensing, MasterCard’s search for blockchain specialists, Revolut’s cryptocurrency push, Pundi X PoS in Venezuela, and now a company in Brazil known as Cielo could be about to make the very first push to PoS (Point-of-Sales) systems that are configured to accept crypto payments.
Although not the first sign of a positive move towards mainstream cryptocurrency payments becoming a reality, Cielo could be yet another company to bring cryptos into a country as a mainstream method of payment within the ‘offline’ retail sector.
Here is a breakdown of those involved in the development of cryptocurrencies and their push for mainstream financial recognition:
Cielo is the operator behind the biggest payment processing system in Brazil. The system processes VISA, MasterCard, and other payments. Now the company has released its intentions to add support for Bitcoin (BTC). This follows a recent release of a PoS system by a startup known as Pundi X in Venezuela that allows citizens to make crypto payments in all Traki department stores in the country.
This means that Bitcoin holders will be able to make payments using Bitcoin at any PoS that uses the Cielo system by using their smartphone app. The Pos machines will be able to generate a unique QR code specifically for the purchase of goods, and accordingly Cielo customers will be able to use their smartphone app to scan the code that will automatically deduct their BTC balance.
One stipulation to this process is that customers are said to need to hold their BTC currency with either Criptohub or Uzzo, which are both partners of Cielo, and therefore the company will also increase its partners’ already dominant hold on the Brazilian BTC wallet community.
The PoS system is not so much as an ‘if’ and more of a ‘when’ will it be released? Cielo’s partner banks are already down with the operation as Paulo Caffarelli, the president of Cielo, has already stated that partner banks have already given their support to the project. In particular, he mentioned Bradesco according to a report on br.cointelegraph.com.
Right now, users can already use the PoS system for BTC payments. On top of this, there has been a release date announced for October that will mark the introduction of an app by Cielo that does not require a PoS system for payments. That means that even those that do not have to have an account with Banco Inter can use the app to make crypto payments opening the doors to a crypto market in Brazil that is available to the entire population.
We already know about Ripple’s MoneyTap app in Japan as we have mentioned this system regularly in an earlier report. We actually brought it up in the MasterCard Could Be Entering The Cryptocurrency Market report just a couple of weeks ago. In the same report we also mentioned the Revolut card that has been making waves within the crypto sphere.
The report mentions MoneyTap and its new blockchain-based technology that has revolutionized the Japanese financial market. However, as you have probably noticed from the title, the main focus was on MasterCard’s intentions to possibly release a crypto payment system. MasterCard is the largest global payment processor in the world and appears to be making positive steps into the cryptocurrency market.
It is speculation at the moment as the news was published off the back of some investigative journalism that spotted MasterCard are advertising to fill job positions that require blockchain experts and the fact that the company has been actively involved in blockchain patents.
On top of this, Revolut has been very active within the crypto marketplace. The company has released products that reward its members with cryptocurrencies and even offers its own crypto exchange services. The Revolut membership comes in several packages from free to paid subscriptions that appeal to those that travel. The idea is to reduce currency exchange costs and bank charges associated with foreign transactions when using fiat currencies.
Adding together Revolut, MasterCard, and Ripple’s MoneyTap, and we have three big-name companies already looking to get on top of what is the undeniable push for mainstream financial crypto acceptance.
Furthermore, these are companies that do not take huge risks and rather they make educated decisions based on millions of dollars spent on research, and so it would be reasonable to assume that the result of their research shows a future for cryptocurrencies in the mainstream financial market.
Of course, there are still some negatives such as the fact that Japan’s 5th largest bank has pulled out Ripple’s Money Tap is not great news, but Japanese companies have a history for pulling out of deals that are not business-related and rather decisions made based on CEO relationships. That does not mean to say that Japanese citizens are going to denounce MoneyTap because when you look at the app's benefits, you have to say that the Japanese bank in question is going to be the loser in the long run.
We could argue that Ripple has already achieved this in Japan with its MoneyTap app and that Cielo is one step behind. However, Ripple has only hinted that its system could be used for crypto payments, but not confirmed this. Currently, Ripple has it is set up purely for Japanese Yen fiat payments only.
The only relation MoneyTap has to a ‘POS system that accepts crypto’ is that the network behind it has been designed using blockchain technology.
It is still reasonable to assume that MoneyTap can be upgraded to accept cryptocurrency in the future simply because it has been built using Ripple’s ecosystem. This would make perfect sense as the whole idea was to build a system for the future, and Cryptos are potentially the future!
We can still draw similarities between Cielo and MoneyTap as both will use QR codes for payments, which is another new development that is becoming popular within the PoS spectrum.
Reports of banks in Switzerland being given license to trade using BTC were recently released, which is a positive sign. The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority has allowed two main players, namely Sygnum AG and SEBA Crypto AG, to continue with their pro-blockchain approaches to the future development of the Swiss financial market.
In short, both MoneyTap and MasterCard give more fuel towards the belief that cryptocurrencies will become mainstream payment options in the near future.
Add Switzerland’s latest licensing and Cielo’s new PoS system and we have enough ammunition to safely say that if there were odds out there on cryptocurrencies becoming mainstream on a global basis, then putting a wager down on this statement becoming reality would be a long term bet that sees you gain a decent return on your investment. As far as safe bets go, this is probably one of the safest you could make!
The evidence is clearly there for all to see, and we have barely scratched the surface as there are plenty of other arguments out there, we can make that support the emergence of cryptos, especially BTC, as mainstream financial currencies. The huge rise of crypto-based online casinos, Thailand’s move to support cryptocurrencies, and the fact that US and Asian cryptocurrency custodial services are opening up almost on a monthly basis.
Admittedly, there are those that can provide plenty of arguments against the support of the opinion that cryptocurrencies will become mainstream. However, when you look at the sheer number of countries and companies that are getting involved in the prospect of cryptocurrencies becoming mainstream, you have to take a stance and ignore the pessimists and focus on the optimists because history has taught us that the latter have usually come out on top.
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