With A Troubled Past, Are Cryptocurrency Cards Worth the Risk to Push Adoption?
Crypto debit cards were looked at as the next big move for broader crypto adoption and involvement of mainstream players like Visa in the issuance of a card that brought confidence to the industry. While the crypto debit card arena paints a rosy picture for a broader crypto use and adoption, the reality has been far from it.
In 2020 itself, the Wirecard scandal rocked the crypto world, given the firm promised real a breakthrough in the crypto debit card arena. However, the bizarre turn of events this June shattered all those hopes. The firm in June applied for insolvency over $2.1 billion missing from their accounts, which they later claimed never existed. Markus Braun, the former CEO of the firm, was accused of market manipulation.
While Wirecard’s fall came in as a shock, it was not the first firm to venture into the crypto debit card arena and fail. Back in 2018, WaveCrest, a worldwide digital payment solutions provider and a VISA member was asked to call back all the VISA prepaid cards that have been issued Visa later revealed that WaveCrest was not following the Visa’s membership regulations.
The Future of Crypto Debit Cards
The key players of the traditional market, i.e., VISA and Mastercard have both shown interest in expanding its reach and technology it offers. Recently Visa wrote a blog post titled Advancing our approach to the digital currency, where the firm expressed its desire to team up with various blockchain players and offer its customer base with a wide variety of technologies. The firm also expressed its desire to create a bridge between Visa’s network of 61 million global merchants and cryptocurrencies.
Mastercard, another prominent player in the debit/credit card industry, has expanded its current crypto program to help different payment solution firms to offer crypto payment cards. The firm recently partnered with Wirex to allow the firm to issue a digital payment card on its network.
Apart from these two mainstream players, even Paypal, which earlier made it clear that they won’t be offering any form of crypto service, has finally decided to join the digital asset bandwagon like many other naysayers. The payment processing giant has partnered with Venmo to offer a Bitcoin purchase option to its 265 million customers across the globe.
Apart from these mainstream traditional players looking to offer crypto payment card services, even major crypto players like Binance has announced its payment card called Binance card.
Looking at the interest of mainstream players along with mainstream crypto players, the crypto industry could see a surge of crypto card providers shortly.