Bakkt Inks Deal with Google Use Cryptocurrency for Real Time Transactions
This partnership will focus on the over-all crypto and online payment sector in the US
Google and US-based crypto marketplace Bakkt have entered into a fresh partnership. The two companies announcrd the deal on Sunday, October 10. As part of this agreement, nearly 10 million Bakkt users will be able to link their virtual Visa debit cards with Google Pay and purchase goods and services online, using cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Once the Bakkt cards are linked to Google’s payment services, cryptocurrencies will get converted into the government-backed fiat currency seamlessly whenever making payments.
Earlier this year, Bakkt released its own Visa Debit Card to enable crypto-based transactions for its users. With this card’s integration with Google Pay, when a Bakkt user pays for something via cryptocurrency, the monetary value associated with the good or service will be converted into fiat for the transaction.
As per Gavin Michael, the CEO of Bakkt, the partnership with Google Pay will allow people to “enjoy their digital assets in a real-time, secure, reliable manner”.
As part of the partnership, Bakkt will also be using the Google Cloud as its could services provider to wire its services to crypto-associated retailers and merchants around the US.
This new crypto-supporting deal in the US comes at a time, the country is exploring ways to explore the world of virtual currencies.
Earlier last week, US-based theatre chain AMC added Dogecoin to the list of cryptocurrencies that it was accepting as a payment method alongside Bitcoin and Ether.
In a recent report, the Bank of America (BofA) also said that the industries backed and based on cryptocurrencies have witnessed a major global explosion, making the space “too large to ignore”.
Andrew Yang, former US-presidential hopeful, tweeted that he has backed Bitcoin, as he announced the launch of his new political outfit, the Forward Party. While tweeting with American businessman Jeff Booth, Yang said that he is a big supporter of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general. This statement from Yang comes months after he promised to transform New York City into a Bitcoin hub if he was elected the mayor. As of now, the US Federal Reserve is known to be looking at creating an official digital dollar.
Yang took to Twitter earlier this week to express his pro-crypto opinions after Booth asked him what the Forward Party planned on doing around cryptocurrencies.
This is not the first time however, that Yang has opened up about having the US explore the globally budding cryptocurrency space.
In November 2019, the former Democratic Party politician had posted a detailed blog on how he would draft frameworks to use and regulate cryptocurrencies on a national level. Yang, at the time, was making a base for his Presidential campaign.
“Other countries, which are ahead of us on regulation, are leading in this new marketplace and dictating the rules that we’ll need to follow once we catch up,” Yang had noted, while highlighting that the number of crypto scams in the US were escalating due to lack of regulations.
In 2020, Yang allowed supporters to send donations for his Presidential campaign in Bitcoin and Ethereum — the world’s most and second most-valued cryptocurrencies respectively.
The climate around cryptocurrencies seems to have been warming up in recent times. Like Yang, several cryptocurrency enthusiasts, have spoken up in favour of this decentralised financing protocol.
Earlier this month, the Bank of America published a report that acknowledged that the industries backed and based on cryptocurrencies have witnessed a major global explosion, making the space “too large to ignore”.
As per the research, nearly 221 million people have traded in cryptocurrencies in recent times — indicating a steady growth of the sector. Mergers and acquisitions in the crypto space also spiked from $940 million (roughly Rs. 7,025 crores) in 2020 to $4.2 billion (Rs. 31,390 crores) in 2021.
Last month, Jerome Powell, the Chairperson of US’ Federal Reserve said that the central bank has no intensions of banning the crypto sector
The Miami city of the US also recently released its first native digital currency called the MiamiCoin.
Earlier this year, the central American country of El Salvador legalised Bitcoin as a legal tender alongside the US Dollar and became the first nation to do so.
Bitcoin is taking the charm off gold. In a note to investors, JP Morgan, the leading American investment banking company, said that Bitcoin is appearing to be a better hedge against inflation than gold. Bitcoin supporters have long tried to assert that the cryptocurrency promises better and quicker returns than gold and many people prefer it as a store of value. Both these features are usually associated with gold. Critics, however, say Bitcoin is extremely volatile and there’s no guarantee that it will always exhibit a growth trajectory.
Yet, Bitcoin price has surpassed the $50,000 (roughly Rs. 37.56 lakhs) mark for the third time this year. While this shows Bitcoin’s vulnerability to rise and fall in quick succession, it also makes the case that investing in it may eventually pay off.
“Institutional investors appear to be returning to Bitcoin, perhaps seeing it as a better inflation hedge than gold,” JP Morgan’s note reportedly read. Commenting on the company’s observation, Fortune magazine said that the note “comes as no surprise” for those who have been closely following Bitcoin’s performance this year.
Bitcoin has seen high volatility this year. In February, it surpassed the $50,000 mark for the first time and then reached an all-time high of about $64,000 (Rs. 48.08 lakhs) in April. That bull run was cut short by a massive cryptocurrency market crash in May and Bitcoin lost all its gains this year, hitting a trading value of below $30,000 (Rs. 22.53 lakhs). It took some time to emerge out of that slumber and by July it was again trading around $40,000 (Rs. 30.05 lakhs). In August, Bitcoin again breached the $50,000 mark but lost the gains. A month later, it hit the milestone for the third time. Bitcoin was trading at $54,719 (Rs. 41.11 lakhs) Saturday afternoon.
JP Morgan believes this third rally is fuelled by “the reemergence of inflation concerns among investors” and they are trying to use Bitcoin as a hedge against it.