Signal: Regulatory scrutiny in the United States may most likely prove problematic.
It’s been clear for some time that WhatsApp has been taking the world by storm, and their latest update is a huge step forward. You can now send money to people through their service in already-enabled markets, and Meta has just started testing the service in the US. Signal has been working on introducing a payments feature for a while & this year, they’ve been testing it with the UK before rolling it out to other countries, today we learned that the payment feature has automatically been added to contacts without notification. It now can be done using their cryptocurrency called MobileCoin.
Earlier last year Elon Musk suggested tweeted that people use the encrypted messaging app Signal.
Use Signal— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 7, 2021
As reported by Wired, users of Elon Musk’s favorite app Signal can now send and receive crypto payments directly in the app. This option has reportedly been available since November, with no publicity. Once you tap your profile photo and select “Payments” the app will give you the option to either buy more MobileCoin with fiat or load up by sending it from your existing crypto wallet. You can load money by tapping on “Add funds” and the app will generate your unique MobileCoin wallet. This feature is still in Beta.
Signal started P2P Cryptocurrency
It seems that MobileCoin is being treated as a way to work ethically, which the developer claims are to discourage people from using fiat or more popular crypto assets.
Most coins, like Bitcoin and Ethereum, have public ledgers that show details of transactions. By looking up an address you can see the current balance and all the recent transactions it’s made. Signal, on the other hand, has publicly accessible records and takes steps to defeat tracing. To the point where even they don’t know how much money you have loaded in the app. If you were looking for an environmentally friendly way to use blockchain technology, this might be for you. The system uses proof-of-stake instead of proof-of-work, so you’re not contributing to climate change like with other options.
One problem with this payment system is that it can’t be loaded through regular processors. Banks and card providers might see it as a competitor and actually push to block Signal from their platforms, even if it’s used only for P2P payments. As of now, to get funds in and out of the app you’ll have to first buy or sell the cryptocurrency for other major currencies, then send it to or from Bitfinex or FIX. You can’t purchase cryptocurrency on any of these websites in the US.
The only slight drawback with private cryptocurrencies is that they might be putting Signal in jeopardy of breaching US federal laws. Overall, the government has lawful policies in place that regulate how crypto companies collect and report information. For instance, legislation mandates all businesses operating with cryptocurrencies provide the IRS with certain data on users to collect taxes. No matter what you think about taxes being inevitable, Benjamin Franklin once wisely said “nothing is certain but death & taxes”
Usage of Signal should pick up following its loosening restrictions into more markets. The majority of Signal’s biggest markets are expected to participate in the process, as navigation through regulatory requirements should be much smoother now.
Disclaimer: The above references an opinion and is for information purposes only. It is not intended to be investment advice. Seek a duly licensed professional for investment advice.