A cryptocurrency whose normative destiny remains uncertain is ready for prime time.
On Monday, Ripple launched a new financial product based on XRP, the most important cryptocurrency in the world by market capitalization alongside Bitcoin and Ethereum. The service, called "XRapid", is designed to allow finance companies and other organizations to make faster and cheaper international payments.
The launch of the product comes at a time when the legal status of XRP hangs in limbo. Unlike Ethereum, which members of the US Securities and Exchange Commission in June indicated that they do not qualify as securities under the US Securities Act, the classification of XRP remains an open question.
Brad Garlinghouse, CEO of Ripple, was excited about the launch of XRapid at his company's Swell event in San Francisco on Monday. "The industry must mature and be less dependent on speculative trading and more dependent on solving real problems for real customers," he said Fortuna.
"We talked about how Ripple intends to do it and now we have more and more evidence in pudding," added Garlinghouse. "It's a big deal for Ripple, it's a big problem for the XRP community, and it's a big problem for cryptography."
Ripple has signed three financial companies as customers for the XRP-based product. They are MercuryFX, a payment service provider based in the United Kingdom; Cuallix, a money transfer company with operations in the United States, Mexico and Hong Kong; and Catalyst Corporate Credit Union Union, a finance company serving over 1,400 credit unions throughout the United States.
Alistair Constance, CEO of MercuryFX, said Fortuna who was persuaded to join XRapid's first client group after performing two product trials in the last two years. The pilots involved sending a few thousand dollars in small denominations to a charity in Mexico.
Constance said that to send $ 1,000 through the status quo method, represented by the SWIFT international payments network, it would take 2 to 3 days to settle and cost between $ 40 and $ 75 on average. With XRapid, MercuryFX was able to to make payments in two minutes at the cost of "not even a couple of cents," he said.
"The economy speaks for itself," said Constance.
If regulators consider XRP to be a security, the ruling could hinder the adoption of cryptocurrency and lead to penalties for companies involved in the sale. Ripple, formerly known as OpenCoin, the creator of XRP, has billions of dollars of XRP locked up in the effort that he regularly sells to finance his operations and other initiatives, such as a recent $ 100 million donation to a company liability program social.