With services like CoinBase and the plain old blockchain, money transmission couldn’t be easier. You can send money around the world in less than a minute. You can cut out expensive services like Western Union, Money Orders, and thankfully less reliable services like Paypal.
The problem is that normal-and-non-technical people either don’t trust Bitcoin or don’t want to be bothered with learning what it is. As a result, it IS complicated for the normal consumer. Services are quickly realizing that for wide spread usage they need to make it even easier than it actually is now.
A conversation I was having this morning led to an idea of how this could be easier and keep the nerd-speak out of the conversation, while also allowing a regular consumer to use the blockchain without even knowing or needing to know.
If there was a way to allow a user to never exchange their coins to Bitcoin, but still use the Bitcoin network to securely transmit their money, then a lot of problems could be solved while keeping the relative costs associated with money transmission very low.
This could (relatively) easily be done by having a backend process that takes the USD, exchanges it to BTC, transmits the currency to the other side, and then exchanges it out or keeps it in BTC according to that user’s preference. Maybe the receiving user just gets a Paypal style email to go log into their secure account and choose how they want their money. Transmission could be done for 1% and it would guarantee that the money was sent and received, fairly quickly.
It turns out Stellar is doing this right now. They have built a new altcoin that will be able to be bought and sold like so many others, but they are using their blockchain to send the money securely and exchange it out to whatever pairs you want on either end. It’s an amazing idea that has the potential to completely revolutionize both the money transmission market and to help bring in millions of users to cryptocurrency. I wish them well and I hope it does what they (and I) think it can do.
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