PayPal has finally enabled crypto payments for millions of merchants allowing users to checkout with crypto. The payments giant also has big plans ahead for NFTs.
On Thursday, November 18, online payments giant PayPal Holdings Inc (NASDAQ: PYPL) finally unveiled an update to its PayPal app dedicated to crypto users on its platform. Using the app, users can now buy, sell, and hold digital assets along with checking out with millions of merchants on the platform.
PayPal entered the crypto market by launching its trading facility last year in November 2020. The company received a massive response although the initial launch focused only on the US market.
Since then PayPal has been expanding its crypto services by including more stakeholders. With the recent update, PayPal also brings merchants on its platform much closer to the crypto ecosystem. thus, users will now be able to select crypto at the checkout on “eligible purchases”.
As of now, PayPal is offering support for four cryptocurrencies on its platform. This includes Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). However, PayPal has some prerequisites for users to use cryptocurrencies as payments.
Users need to fill up the W9-tax form in advance on the app. Besides, cryptocurrencies will be automatically available as payment options as long as users can pay in full. Before paying it to the merchant, PayPal will convert the crypto amount into USD or any other currency.
With Crypto Payments PayPal Catering to the Massive Market Demand
PayPal jumped into the crypto business last year citing major market demand. Its crypto business quickly gathered momentum as it already has a massive user bank worldwide. In the subsequent quarterly reports, crypto trading also contributed a sizeable part of PayPal’s revenue.
In a recent podcast, Jose Fernandez, Paypal’s senior vice president and general manager of blockchain, crypto, and digital currencies, said that venturing into the crypto business was part of strong demand from both consumers and merchants.
He further added:
“We thought that it was part of our responsibility to help in making this asset class more accessible to the public.”
Besides, Fernandez also rejected the rumors about PayPal planning to release its own stablecoin. He thinks that the sector isn’t quite evolved to support large value and small volume transactions. The executive added that most stablecoins in the market are useful for trading or DeFi. Although these are good use cases, PayPal is looking for stablecoins secure for payments. Fernandez said, “we have not seen a stablecoin out there that is purpose-built for payments.”
One of the biggest areas where PayPal has shown interest is NFTs. The popularity of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) has skyrocketed this year in 2021. However, buying an NFT is not a seamless process that PayPal seeks to solve. He added:
“The experience of buying an NFT today is the number of hoops that you need to go through… That goes to the protection side as well. So that is something that is definitely on the early adopter side, is not yet a mainstream experience for a curious but not sophisticated user. “We definitely have a role to play on how do we enable a seamless payment experience for NFT… many of our merchants and partners, especially in the media sector are asking for that.”