Cryptocurrencies were designed to disrupt the existing status quo of the banking industry and to bring decentralization back to finance. Although the revolution did not happen overnight, we can see that digital assets are gradually taking on the traditional currencies. Banks are responding to the advancement of crypto by integrating it into their business models. The concept of a cryptocurrency bank is applied to all crypto-friendly banks nowadays, and it is highly likely that we will see more of them emerge in the future. Banks that accept crypto do it not only due to the popularity of Bitcoin but also because digital assets have superior qualities, especially in terms of payments.
- Cryptocurrency payments are superior to banks transfers in many ways.
- Crypto transactions are faster, cheaper, and more private.
- NOWPayments enables businesses to accept crypto as payment.
Why banks hate and love cryptocurrency
The answer to the question of why banks hate cryptocurrency is quite obvious. Banks do not like any sources of competition. Cryptocurrency is, perhaps, the only force capable of sending a substantial part of the current banking institutions off to retirement. Blockchains, the core technology of crypto, is decentralized, anonymous, and cheap to use. Banks lack all of these characteristics. As a result, cryptocurrencies constitute a powerful competitor to banks, which causes them to continuously discourage people from buying and using cryptocurrencies.
At the same time, banks actually benefit from the aforementioned characteristics of cryptocurrencies. For instance, Ripple’s cryptocurrency XRP, which was created exactly for interbank transactions, is extremely popular among financial institutions since it significantly facilitates money transfers. Moreover, some banks have their own blockchains since they understand the value of the technology. Thus, it is possible to say that banks actually love cryptocurrencies, but only when they do not interfere with their interests.
How can banks get involved in cryptocurrency?
Investment lies at the core of banks. Every financial institution needs to invest in lucrative projects to stay alive. Cryptocurrencies which are constantly demonstrating amazing value growth can offer numerous investment opportunities for banks. Moreover, banks can present their own clients with a chance to participate in crypto investment by guaranteeing them a certain annual % if they decide to share their digital assets with the bank and thus provide liquidity.
As mentioned above, cryptocurrencies possess excellent characteristics such as low transaction fees and fast speed. These features make them excellent for interbank payments. Usually, in a situation when one bank sends money to another, the transfer may take several days. Cryptocurrency transactions, on the other hand, often take less than a minute to complete, which can considerably facilitate bank-to-bank payments.
Additionally, banks can add crypto wallets to the existing accounts and give their clients a chance to send cryptocurrency to their friends or pay with it at merchants. Essentially, banks can simply make crypto a part of their payment services and facilitate crypto management for clients.
Banks also can enable customers to trade digital assets by deploying a special platform for crypto traders. Basically, banks can start competing against large crypto exchanges such as Binance by offering customers tools to trade crypto. Such a feature will certainly be in demand among crypto enthusiasts and can potentially bring a lot of profit to the bank.
Finally, banks can make use of smart contracts in order to ensure better transparency and accountability when conducting standard procedures. For instance, smart contracts can be utilized for the provision of mortgages and loans. Smart contracts are able to automate such processes and enforce contracts without the need to rely on people.
Crypto payments vs banks transactions
Speed of transactions
When comparing crypto payments and bank transfers, it is easy to see how the former beat the latter in virtually every aspect. Cryptocurrency transactions can take less than 5 seconds, while bank transfers may take days. Blockchain technology enables crypto to travel from one address to another at great speeds 24/7. The speed of bank transfers, on the other hand, is slowed due to numerous bank procedures, poor infrastructure, and limited working hours.
International transfers are a perfect example of how crypto P2P technology is able to outplay traditional banking institutions. Cryptocurrencies do not have borders and can be passed around between users living in different countries at the same high speed. International bank transfers cannot boast the same degree of efficiency.
Cost of transactions
Cryptocurrency transactions are also much cheaper than bank transfers. For example, one XRP transaction will cost users, on average, less than $0.01. Bank’s fees charged for transfers are often simply exorbitant, epically when it comes to international transactions. As a result, crypto can help people to save substantial sums of money.
Nevertheless, banks can easily negate all of the aforementioned advantages of cryptocurrencies by building better and faster infrastructure. Yet, the privacy and anonymity of blockchains are features that no crypto-friendly business banks are capable of offering. Even if banks decide to add crypto wallets, they will still know the personal details of each client and will be able to pinpoint all transactions to their respective participants. Blockchains are totally anonymous, which means that users can send crypto without exposing their private information.
How to accept crypto payments
Bitcoin crypto bank is a great concept which we all hope to see in the near future. Yet, for now, businesses that wish to accept cryptocurrencies as payment can do it using NOWPayments’ tools.
NOWPayments offers solutions such as crypto invoices, virtual Point-of-Sale terminals, and eCommerce merchant plugins compatible with various platforms such as WooCommerce and Shopify.
Charities and bloggers can use widgets, buttons, and links developed by NOWPayments to accept crypto donations.
Cryptocurrencies are quickly becoming a part of global finance, and the examples of banks developing cryptocurrency solutions only prove it. At the same time, merchants do not need banks that allow cryptocurrency payments to start offering crypto as a payment method. NOWPayments’ crypto payment gateway is all a business needs to become crypto-friendly.