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More than 1,000 blockchain-based apps have launched their own digital currencies or “tokens” – for example, Ether which allows users to commit transactions on the Ethereum blockchain, or Filecoin for storing and retrieving data. The explosion in digital currencies poses an age-old challenge for consumers: The currencies they hold aren’t necessarily the ones they need to use.
For the blockchain economy to run as smoothly as the web, users need the ability to convert between any app-issued currency on demand, as easily as they can load a web page. Bancor, the open-source protocol for automated token conversions, has informed that it is taking a step closer to this reality with the release of the Bancor Wallet, providing instant on-chain conversion between nearly 100 cryptocurrencies, with more added daily.
The Bancor Wallet allows users to purchase tokens with any major credit or debit card and instantly convert them to any token in the Bancor Network, including heavily-traded coins like Ether and EOS. In-wallet conversions are made against smart contracts, rather than by matching buyers and sellers, giving users transparent and efficient pricing without the spreads and fees that traditionally profit matchmakers.
Blockchain apps in their early stages and those with niche user bases often struggle to facilitate easy buying and selling of their tokens on mainstream exchanges, restricting the adoption and usability of their networks and services. The Bancor Protocol makes tokens always available for buying and selling directly from within the wallet, giving users continuous access to any blockchain-based project, regardless of how frequently its token is traded on exchanges.
In the new Internet of value, where anyone can create a currency, digital wallets are becoming the browsers which allow users to navigate the emerging world of decentralized apps. To be useful, users need seamless and secure interfaces to blockchain-based products as well as on-demand conversion between the tokens that power them,” said Galia Benartzi, Co-founder of Bancor.
Money is changing, and digital wallets must be as dynamic as the currencies they hold,” Benartzi added. “Imagine if your coffee shop loyalty points were accepted at any cash register in the world, or your airline miles could buy cellular minutes with the click of a button. The ability to buy anything, with anything, has long been the promise of digital currencies. Bancor’s new wallet aims to deliver on that promise by offering continuous access to crypto tokens and instant convertibility between virtual assets, unlocking enormous purchasing power for consumers.
While the current onramp to blockchain is littered with clunky interfaces, disconnected user experiences and costly hacks, Bancor is optimistic about the next generation of digital wallets paving the way to widespread adoption of dapps. Over 100 blockchain apps, each with its own digital currency, have announced integration with the Bancor Network, while many of the industry’s most popular tokens, including ETH, EOS, DAI (MakerDao) and BNB (Binance), are already live and instantly convertible in the Bancor Wallet.
Conversion volume on Bancor climbed to nearly $40 million per week this year, up from $3 million per week in November. With the release of the Bancor Wallet, users are now also able to purchase Ether, convertible for any integrated token on the Bancor Network, using major credit or debit cards.
Prominent tech companies, financial service providers and retailers have historically struggled to launch digital wallets that gain mainstream adoption. One could argue that solutions like ApplePay, Google Wallet, ChasePay and ConnectC faltered because waving a phone at a register is hardly more convenient than swiping a card.
The real innovation behind digital wallets isn’t mobility, it is the progression towards a world where millions of virtual assets — from loyalty points to user-generated tokens — are instantly interchangeable and thus ubiquitous, despite their respective growth cycles,” Benartzi concluded. “By allowing anyone to utilize any coin at anytime, crypto wallets hold the promise of bringing blockchain adoption to the consumer forefront, much as Internet browsers did for web apps.