Adoption has been the kryptonite of cryptocurrency since Bitcoin’s inception.
Difficult to access and even more difficult to understand for the uninitiated, critics of crypto’s lingering complexities contend that the advent of digital currencies are the equivalent of smartphones in the hands of cavemen a few thousand years ago.
Simplifying and streamlining the adoption and usage of coins and tokens that generate more memes than transactions hasn’t been easy. But efforts are underway to make it easier. The key to making it work? Crypto needs to be so easy to use that users don’t even realize they’re using it.
This concept has long been a fantasy of crypto enthusiasts. But could this vision soon become reality? As it turns out, a forthcoming cryptocurrency wallet could very well be the Holy Grail of crypto wallets and the first to see a Facebook-caliber wave of worldwide adoption. So who’s behind it?
It’s not Amazon. Or Microsoft. Certainly not Apple. Samsung? No, again.
The unnamed wallet, casually dubbed “V3” by crypto Twitter, is being released by a company almost nobody outside of crypto-centric social media communities have heard of.
Meet Telcoin Pte. Ltd. A crypto company that appears to shun the spotlight that other companies in the space crave like a diabetic needing insulin, Telcoin has been working on its vision for the future of fintech since 2017. If it’s true that good things take time, Telcoin is about to release a game-changer for cryptocurrency wallets.
Telcoin’s schtick is remittances. A blockchain-powered financial technology platform, Telcoin says it “connects with telecom and mobile money platforms globally” to facilitate crypto-supported cross-border fiat transfers. 99.99% of people have no idea what that lingo means. But here’s what ordinary people do know — people in one country sometimes have to send money to friends and family in another country. Using services like Western Union, cash is sent to and from individuals everywhere on the globe every single day.
According to data from the GSMA, there are more than 1 billion active mobile money accounts today in 95 countries. In total, that abouts to a worldwide remittance market valued in the hundreds of billions of dollars.
Telcoin, a “compliance-first” company, is leveraging the power of blockchain technology to infuse crypto into the remittance process, making remittances faster (via mobile) and cheaper to send. Telcoin’s fees are pegged at around 2.5%. The average remittance fee of competitors is over 7%. For the type of remittance customer Telcoin is targeting, this significantly reduced remittance fee is practically a financial miracle.
Despite being the new kid on the crypto block, Telcoin’s three year journey to bringing a live product to market has been lined with an impressive track record of earning government licenses and authorizations to operate in places out of reach to most others in the space. In February of 2021, Telcoin officially opened for business, launching fiat transfers between Canada and the Philippines.
The service, which is available on Telcoin’s iOS and Android applications, “aims to be the most affordable and convenient option for offshore Filipinos to send money to friends and family back home,” Telcoin says.
Making it possible to pull off their foray into remittances is Telcoin’s partnership with Gcash. Unlike Telcoin, which entered 2021 with no name brand recognition, Gcash is one of the world’s leading mobile money platforms.
With 33 million customers, Gcash instantly made Telcoin a force to be reckoned with in the remittance market.
Telcoin’s partner list doesn’t stop with Gcash. All together, Telcoin’s partners reach hundreds of millions of people in every corner of the globe. And soon, Telcoin says it will be open for business in all of these places.
That brings us to “V3,” Telcoin’s forthcoming free wallet upgrade that is expected to introduce a wide range of coveted features, DeFi services, and other capabilities that could make the Telcoin offering the only crypto wallet most consumers will ever need.
With competitive forces presumably watching Telcoin’s every move, it’s no surprise that few details have been explicitly disclosed, but the breadcrumbs shared are enough to paint an adequate and impressive picture of what’s to come.
V3 – the third version of their mobile wallet — is expected to simplify contactless payments for consumers while also serving as a hub for ERC-20 token storage, and making it easy to swap crypto tokens for fiat in local currencies — something that could make V3 the proverbial Holy Grail of crypto wallets.
“Telcoin V3 is the culmination of three years of research and development, organization building, and business development,” Telcoin said in an April 16th press release about the progress of V3. “The next generation of the Telcoin Platform stack is architected to fully harness the power of DeFi and the reach of telecoms to bring fast and affordable, user-owned financial products to every mobile network subscriber in the world.”
Telcoin has partnerships with mobile operators and mobile money partners that haven’t yet been disclosed but are expected to come after more services and corridors are opened this quarter and next.
“V3 introduces two formative, compliant, user-owned financial products designed to operate at a fraction of the cost of traditional services, which execute automatically via smart contracts rather than intermediaries — and where active Telcoin users capture fees typically awarded exclusively to financial institutions,” Telcoin revealed in the release, promising to share further details before V3 ships.
For a company awkwardly famous for not trying to make itself famous, it’s apparent that something has changed for Telcoin. Namely, it’s momentum. As the Bitcoin bull market rages and all eyes are on crypto, Telcoin finds itself on the front lines of the battle for adoption. And some think V3 will be the silver bullet that solves problems that have long impeded the dream of everyday crypto usage in places where such a reality seemed impossible just a short time ago.
“We are incredibly excited to be at this exact place and time in history, at the forefront of what we believe is a movement that will revolutionize financial services and empower billions of people,” the company says.
For now, Telcoin is leaving us with far more questions than answers. But when the answers finally come, the barriers to entry in crypto could be significantly lessened.
Fergus Murray is the lead editor for Business News Ledger. Fergus has been working as a freelance journalist for nearly a decade having published stories in the New York Times, The Plain Dealer, The Daily Mail and many others. Fergus is based in Detroit and covers issues affecting his city and New York State. When he is not busy writing, Fergus enjoys jogging.