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You can now pay with Bitcoin for a U.S passport

Peninsula Visa, announced it would be accepting the world’s flagship crypto, Bitcoin as a form of payment for selected passport services

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An American based company, Peninsula Visa, that specializes in visa and passport, announced recently it would be accepting the world’s flagship crypto Bitcoin, as a form of payment for selected passport services, via using Coinbase Commerce as the secure processor for these transactions.

Evan James, Chief Operating Officer at Peninsula Visa said, “Never before has anyone been able to pay for a U.S. passport using a digital currency. We’re thrilled to be the first company in the nation offering this alternative payment method to our valued customers.

As we look forward to a post COVID world, one that we believe will be more digital than ever before, offering travelers the ability to pay via Bitcoin feels like the right move at the right time.”

  • At the time of filing this report, Bitcoin price traded at $16,328.11 with a daily trading volume of $20,049,300,522.
  • BTC price is up 2.1% in the last 24 hours. It has a circulating supply of 19 Million coins and a max supply of 21 Million coins.

The services further listed by the California based company, Peninsula Visa, for payment through Bitcoin, with additional passport and visa services to be rolled out over the next 12 months are:

  • Passport renewal
  • Name change
  • Second passport
  • Second passport renewal

Peninsula Visa — Peninsula Visa was founded in 1975 as a paper airline ticket delivery company in Silicon Valley. Since its start, it has transitioned through the constantly changing landscape of technology and international travel.

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CRYPTOCURRENCY

Cardano partners with Fortune 250 company, Dish Network

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Cardano has announced that it is partnering with a Fortune 250 company, Dish Network, a TV and wireless service provider. The announcement was made by Chris Ergen, the head of Innovation at Dish. 

Chris Ergen made this announcement at the 2021 Cardano Summit with Charles Hoskinson, the CEO of Input-Output present. Chris stated, “I am excited to announce that Dish and input-output are entering into a strategic collaboration to build blockchain services and to make blockchain a core part of our network and consumer strategy.” 

Hoskinson stated that the partnership will help integrate Dish’s telecom business into the Cardano blockchain so as to help provide digital identity services to Dish customers. He further stated, “Ultimately, the collaboration is going to be both innovative, safe and suitable for the customers and regulators of this industry.” 

The partnership aims at bringing the telecoms industry to the blockchain space. It’s the first collaboration of its kind, unlocking significant value for Dish’s customers while growing adoption for Cardano. 

Recall that Cardano just recently launched an Alonzo hard fork mainnet upgrade. The upgrade brought to the Cardano network the capability to launch smart contracts, ushering in a new era for the blockchain which puts it in direct competition with the likes of Ethereum and Solana. 

Since the launch of Smart Contracts, over 200 smart contracts have been listed on the Cardano blockchain explorer.  

Charles concluded the announcement stating, “this is the kind of deal I can imagine in a decade horizon, will involve hundreds of millions of people if not billions of people. I am deeply passionate about it because to do the things we like to do as a company, which is to bank the unbanked and connect the unconnected, makes this is a tremendous challenge.” 

Cardano’s native token is down 6.22% for the day as it currently trades $2.20 as of the time of this writing. 

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CRYPTOCURRENCY

Square to build Bitcoin hardware wallet

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Last month, Square CEO, Jack Dorsey hinted in a tweet that the company was considering creating a non-custodial hardware wallet for Bitcoin. Yesterday, he confirmed the rumours by tweeting “We’re doing it,” in a reply to Jesse Dorogusker, Square Inc.’s hardware Lead, who was announcing that the company had decided to build a hardware wallet.

Square, Inc. is an American fintech financial services and digital payments company based in San Francisco, California. The company was founded by Jack Dorsey who is also the CEO of Twitter.

Jesse Dorogusker also tweeted that the company has started assembling a team to handle the project, emphasizing the product is very much in the drawing-board stage. Nevertheless, he said Square will seek to bring a mobile-friendly, “assisted-self-custody” wallet to a global audience.

“We have decided to build a hardware wallet and service to make Bitcoin custody more mainstream. We will continue to ask and answer questions in the open. This community’s response to our thread about this project has been awesome, encouraging, generous, collaborative and inspiring,” he stated.

Square’s status as a mainstream fintech would likely inject new attention into Bitcoin custody. It has much wider name recognition than even the best-known hardware builders in the cryptocurrency industry. It has also carved out a niche in making Bitcoin accessible through its flagship product, Cash App.

What this means

With the increase in cryptocurrency-related thefts and scams, many companies have emerged to serve a growing need to protect their crypto assets. A hardware wallet provides a unique opportunity to safeguard cryptocurrency assets offline, safe from the clutches of online scammers. Hardware wallets provide a non-custodial service in such a way that you have sole control of your private keys, which in turn control your cryptocurrency and prove the funds are yours.

This innovation will help stem the increase in cryptocurrency-related theft and will help make Bitcoin custody more mainstream.

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Standard Chartered Bank plans European crypto exchange

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Standard Chartered Bank, United Kingdom’s multinational banking and financial services company, plans to launch a cryptocurrency exchange. To achieve this, the bank has partnered with Hong Kong exchange owner, BC Technology Group, to launch a platform for the U.K. and European institutional market.

The bank has long expressed interest in the cryptocurrency market and this is their way of breaking into the space. The project will be handled by Standard Chartered Ventures, the innovation arm of the bank, but no timeline has been given for the launch.

What they are saying

Alex Manson, Head of SC Ventures, in an interview with Reuters, stated, “We have a strong conviction that digital assets are here to stay and will be adopted by the institutional market as a highly relevant asset class.”

Raphael Polansky, the managing director at Boerse Stuttgart Digital Ventures GmbH, mentioned last week that demand for cryptocurrencies from traditional banks will increase over time but in the short run, they may be more reluctant and sceptical especially now that the market has been getting a lot of backlashes from regulatory authorities in various countries.

He stated, “We foresee a lot of strategic moves in the market where traditional banks will invest in crypto custodians instead of building up their own solutions.”

Standard Chartered is now one of the latest mainstream financial players to show interest in cryptocurrency trading. The bank’s longtime rival, HSBC, publicly announced that it had no interest in entering the cryptocurrency market, even as competitors seek to meet institutional and client demand for cryptocurrency-based investments.

What this means

With more traditional banks getting involved in cryptocurrencies, the notion that cryptocurrencies are speculative assets is being dispelled and the value of the crypto market is becoming clearer to investors, especially and with the global inflation rate which is expected to increase.

Standard Chartered share price is trading £505, currently up 0.52%.

 

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