Without an aggressive marketing strategy, fintech giant PayPal is quietly and continuously making its way deeper into the cryptocurrency space, rolling out features and forging key partnerships to advance its digital asset strategy.
This week, PayPal launched new cryptocurrency onboarding and exiting for its U.S. customers — a noteworthy step for the country, especially since many crypto companies are working to support fiat-to-crypto conversions since the SEC A controversial crackdown on the industry began.
Traditional asset manager Franklin Templeton has also deepened its ties to the cryptocurrency ecosystem. The company has filed for a spot Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded fund (ETF) in the United States, joining a long list of major investment firms seeking approval for Bitcoin investment products, including BlackRock, Fidelity ) and companies such as WisdomTree.
With new players joining the digital asset world every day, it’s clear that cryptocurrencies are becoming more mainstream, even in the face of a long-term bearish market.
This week’s Crypto Biz looks at PayPal’s crypto gateway, Franklin Templeton’s BTC ETF filing, Coinbase’s Lightning Network integration, and Meta’s plans for a new artificial intelligence model.
PayPal allows US users to sell cryptocurrencies through MetaMask wallet
PayPal continues to expand its digital asset services, integrating new ways to sell cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. The payments giant launched a new entrance and exit for Web3 payments on September 11, allowing U.S. users to convert cryptocurrencies into dollars directly from their wallets and into their PayPal balance. Exit functionality is available for wallets, decentralized applications, and non-fungible token markets, and is live on MetaMask. The latest launch comes shortly after PayPal partnered with hardware wallet company Ledger to offer a new on-ramp integration in August 2023, allowing verified users in the United States to purchase Bitcoin, Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Litecoin (LTC) directly on Ledger hardware wallets.
Franklin Templeton files for spot Bitcoin ETF
Asset management company Franklin Templeton applied to the U.S. SEC on September 12 to launch a spot Bitcoin ETF. Prior to the release of the S-1 registration statement, the SEC on August 31 deferred a decision on spot ETF applications of WisdomTree, Valkyrie, Fidelity, VanEck, Bitwise, and Invesco, and on August 29 the court ruled that the SEC must consider Grayscale’s conversion Apply. BTC futures ETF becomes spot ETF. According to the application, the fund will be structured as a trust. Coinbase will host BTC, and BNY Mellon will serve as cash custodian and manager. Franklin Templeton manages $1.5 trillion in assets.
Meta is building an AI model to rival OpenAI’s most powerful systems
Social media giant Meta is developing a new artificial intelligence (AI) model that will rival the most advanced versions of OpenAI. According to WSJ sources, the new model will be “several times more powerful” than the Llama 2 model Meta released earlier this year. Llama was trained with 70 billion parameters, and although OpenAI has not yet released the parameters for its GPT-4, it is estimated to have about 1.5 trillion parameters. Meta’s new system will be open source, allowing other companies to build artificial intelligence tools to generate advanced text, analytics and other types of output. The company has also been building the data centers needed to create such advanced systems, as well as buying more of Nvidia’s H100 semiconductor chips.
Coinbase to integrate Bitcoin Lightning Network: CEO Brian Armstrong
Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has confirmed its decision to integrate Layer 2 payment protocol Lightning Network (LN) as users seek faster and cheaper Bitcoin transactions. Until recently, major cryptocurrency exchanges including Coinbase and Binance had no intention of adopting Layer-2 solutions because many community members believed that LN integration would provide less incentive for exchange revenue. Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong asked the crypto community to be patient during the integration process. LN was created to help solve Bitcoin’s scalability issues and compete with projects promising faster and cheaper transactions. The decision comes a month after Coinbase protocol expert Viktor Bunin began investigating the feasibility of Lightning Network integration.
We’re working on how best to add lightning. It’s not easy, but I think it’s worth doing. I fully support the development of Bitcoin payments.
Not sure why you think we ignore Bitcoin – we attract more people than probably any company in the world.
Let’s build it… https://t.co/9dFGYd6XZt
— Brian Armstrong️ (@brian_armstrong) August 2, 2023
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