PayPal Users Now Can Start Cryptocurrency Transactions

PayPal has taken down its waitlist for cryptocurrency services, and now officially allows eligible customers to buy and sell Bitcoin and other virtual coins using their online wallets.

PayPal CEO Daniel Schulman said earlier this month that only 10% of PayPal clients have access to the cryptocurrency services and use it for retail purchases with the company’s 26 million merchants. He added that the waiting list for the new offering was two or three times bigger than the company initially anticipated.

Schulman, who previously said that he owns bitcoins, promised to provide more US users with crypto access in the next few weeks, as well as internationally to its over 300 million users, in the first half of 2021. PayPal also plans to roll out these features to its mobile payment service app Venmo in select international markets.

Early birds will be able to buy, hold and sell four cryptocurrencies initially featuring Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin.

To launch the feature at US retailers which accept PayPal, the payment giant had teamed up with Paxos Trust Company, a regulated provider of cryptocurrency products and services.

Other rivals already offer cryptocurrencies

As the mainstream payment industry has woken to cryptocurrency its related industry, PayPal has finally been forced to take note. Until recently, PayPal’s stance on the entire ecosystem was that they are much more pro blockchain but not fully vested in the cryptocurrency side of things.

These ambitions, however, took a blow after PayPal was the first company to pull out of the coalition of companies involved in a Facebook-led cryptocurrency initiative, Libra Association.

At the time, PayPal did not give a reason for leaving the project, but shortly after there were a few pieces of evidence to suggest that the payment giant is showing interest in getting involved in cryptocurrency.

A prime, and recent example of PayPal’s involvement in the space was the firm’s investment in cryptocurrency compliance and risk management platform TRM Labs. PayPal also filed many related patents including one to speed up bitcoin transaction processing times through a faster cryptocurrency payment system.

PayPal is also competing with its rivals such as Revolut and Square’s Cash app, on the digital assets front which the latter was one of its early adopters.

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