Set to take a large slice of the 49 billion dollar market.
Solana Pay is a set of decentralized payment standards and protocols for merchants that allow them to directly accept and make payments in dollar digital currency, such as USD Coin ($USDC), at points of sale and online.
Solana Pay makes it possible to conduct almost instant settlement at almost zero cost of payments from participating sellers.
opening access to more than $4 billion currently in circulation on the Solana blockchain, and more than $49 billion across the entire digital asset market as of February 1, 2022.
The first payments were already made using Solana Pay: a cappuccino was bought at Bliss Coffee Cafe, and a latte was paid for at Red Giant Coffee. A few days after the launch, Solana Pay attracted more than 300 potential customers, most of them small and medium-sized enterprises. Solana Pay uses all the advantages of the Solana blockchain, which means that in addition to high transaction speed and low fees, it is also carbon neutral and provide privacy.
Now Solana Pay is supported by FTX, Phantom and Slope wallets. In the future, they plan to add Solflare, Crypto Please and Glow. The infrastructure partners are Cirlce, Citcon, checkout.com.
Ecommerce integrates with crypto
Many digital startups use platforms like WordPress or Shopify for their web presence and online sales. In our article on MVP apps we highlighted the use cases and potential of these products for entrepreneurs starting a business, and a lot of money can be made. Shopify, for example, have a total gross merchandise volume of over $40 billion and make enough sales for Shopify to cream off $151m per year in revenue.
If you’re starting an ecommerce site, you’ll have to deal with payment methods and you will need to make sure you’re giving your audience the right options to choose from.
VISA teams up with crypto
According to a recent Visa report, crypto payments are no longer a curiosity. As a result of 3 months of work with cryptocurrency services, customers made payments worth $2.5 billion, which is 70% of the total volume for 2021.
Consumers see the usefulness of a Visa card connected to an account on a cryptocurrency platform because “it gives them the opportunity to use funds to pay for purchases, allows them to manage expenses, and everything is paid immediately and without problems,” says Visa CFO Vasant Prabhu.
Visa is currently working with more than 60 crypto companies. And they are even preparing to launch their own consulting center to help clients take their first steps in the cryptocurrency market.
Apple Pay Integrates Crypto
This February, Apple introduced the Tap to Pay feature, which turns the device into a terminal for contactless payments. Users can pay using contactless credit and debit cards and other digital wallets “with a simple touch to their iPhone — no additional equipment or payment terminal is required.”
This means that customers using Coinbase Card, CryptoCom Visa Card or similar payment cards can use their cryptocurrency assets to make payments via Tap to Pay.
This spring the first payment platform offering this service will be Stripe, as well as the e-commerce site Shopify Point of Sale . A feature will be added to the iPhone that will allow sellers to accept cryptocurrency payments. By the time of launch, it will be available only in the USA, on iPhone XS and older models.
Samsung Integrates with Crypto
Without going far away from the giants of mobile services and devices, let’s also recall Samsung, which recently announced Samsung Wallet, which will be integrated into the new Galaxy S22 Ultra smartphone.
The wallet is a secure storage, and it was designed to provide users with access to a “set of digital products” that include driver’s licenses, ID cards, digital house keys and also cryptocurrencies. Samsung Wallet will work on its own payment platform Samsung Pay.
Security will be provided by the Samsung Knox Vault platform, which encrypts confidential information and blockchain keys, and also stores them separately from the main operating system of the phone.
Binance and Ftx Integrate Pay Cards
The leading crypto exchanges are not far behind. In 2022, Binance, which aspires to become the leader of the Ukrainian crypto market, plans to issue a payment cryptocurrency card in Ukraine. The balance on it will be in cryptocurrencies, fiat is not required.
At the time of the transaction, the amount is automatically converted from crypto to fiat. Representatives of the local Binance division say that local laws do not prohibit payments in cryptocurrencies if payment assets are converted into fiat.
FTX announced the release of a VISA debit card. This is how the card will work: the cryptocurrency on the FTX balance will be automatically converted to the required amount at the time of payment. So, theY will be spent crypto not fiat. The card is not available yet, but you can join the waiting list.
The Previous Best Payment Platforms:
Stripe vs Paypal vs Square vs Braintree
Let's compare what we currently use: Stripe, Paypal, Square, and Braintree to see what each do and how they do it. It's easy to see which might be better for different kinds of businesses. And, where Solana pay, might fit in.
The key areas we’ll compare are:
- Features – what do they offer and what can’t they do?
- Pricing – where can we find those small gains which make a difference at scale?
- Ease of use – can a regular person integrate it into their business, or is a developer needed?
But first, let’s look at some of the different use cases for these payment platforms to contextualize our investigation.
As a general rule let's say the fees for these platforms are ~4%, all things included. This means that for any $100 transaction, the cost of any sale using fiat as an exchange. Is roughly $4.
The Old Guard - Quick review!
An excellent option for a brand new digital startup. Stripe helps you establish the business and grow it.
It accepts the major credit cards and debit cards while also accepting some more obscure forms of payment like: AliPay, Android Pay, Apple Pay, Bitcoin, ACH.
Stripe charge no monthly fee for their service, instead taking a transaction fee of 2.9% + $0.30.
The lack of a set monthly fee means you won’t be losing money if you’re not selling, and this flexible model seems to be becoming increasingly prevalent across providers.
When it comes to international sales, however,
Stripe charges a 2% conversion fee per transaction.
One of the higher rates for currency conversion.
A useful addition to have on your site. It’s 12% of the US market’s preferred payment method. Doesn’t excel in any category, though.
Paypal provides a very streamlined and frictionless payment experience.
Simply enter your email and password and you’re able to make a purchase.
This removes having to get your card out and fiddle around tapping in digits, and it also provides a level of security – knowing that you’re not entering your card information into a website you don’t know.
Paypal has three different tiers of pricing, depending on what you’re looking for from the product.
The first tier is based around adding a portal to your website through HTML. This sends your customer into Paypal’s window to complete the transaction.
For this portal, there is no monthly cost and a variable transaction rate depending on your monthly volume;
ranging from 3.4% + $0.30 for monthly revenues below $1500, to 1.9% + $0.30 for revenue between $15,000 and $55,000.
Above that, they recommend a custom quote.
If you’re a small business with both online and offline sales, Square is made for you. They offer a good loans package to companies looking to expand. Be wary of the high transaction rates when your revenue increases.
This option is a little different to the rest. While Square perform most of the same services as Stripe or Braintree, the real unique selling point of Square is their point of sale (POS) system.
Square sends you a card reader on signing up (contactless readers come at a fee) and provides you with the software you need to manage an offline store. Yes, that’s right, people still use physical shops!
This allows for all your sales, both online and off, to navigate through the same payment platform; making it easier to track and manage your company’s performance. Square accepts all the normal credit and debit cards you would expect
Square’s pricing depends on how you’re paying. There are no monthly fees, but you’ll find transaction costs that aren’t as flexible at scale as other providers.
For contactless payments, you’re looking at a transaction fee of 2.75% with chip and pin at 3.5% + $0.15. Online payments are 2.9% + $0.30, which is a fairly standard starting point.
Enterprise customers should navigate here. It provides all the payment services of Stripe while also delivering Paypal and low currency conversion rates. Probably not the option for non-techies.
Braintree is very much a Stripe competitor.
First, Braintree bought Venmo, then Paypal bought Braintree. Being owned by Paypal, which is in turn owned by Ebay, has helped catapult Braintree into larger and larger market shares.
Revolut vs Wise: Which is better in 2022?
Ever since their respective launch in 2011 and 2015, Wise and Revolut are both striving to make it easier for people to send and receive money abroad, offering both personal and business accounts to their customers.
They can save you a lot of time and money, and they offer a variety of other cool features as well. They are established, trusted, and adding new features and benefits all the time. A good start to unbanking yourself and becoming a global citizen sending and receiving "money" in many currencies (even crypto).
If transparent fees, more available currencies and no extra fees on the weekends are important for you—just give Wise a go! You can open a free account in minutes.
Traditionally, if you wanted to make an international money transfer, you had to go through your bank – and pay hefty bank transfer fees for sending money abroad.
Revolut and Wise were both established to provide a solution to this problem, and they work by allowing users all over the world to send and receive money in most currencies and at any time of the day or night—offering great alternatives to regular bank accounts.
As you can see, both Revolut and Wise use the mid-market exchange rate.
Revolut also charges a fee outside exchange hours, which can range between 0.5% - 2.0%.²
This can be a potential dealbreaker if you don’t like such limitations.
With Wise, you’ll always pay the mid-market rate and a small, transparent fee – doesn’t matter which currency you’d like to use and when.
The Future Guard - Solana Pay
Launches Into Crowded Digital Payments Space
Solana has launched a Solana Pay service as it tries to compete with the big boys in the realm of payment apps, but is the network up to the task?
On Feb. 1, Solana Labs announced the launch of Solana Pay in a joint collaboration Circle, Checkout.com, Citcon, Phantom, FTX, and Slope.
The announcement stated that the premise behind the new service is that the actual payment and its underlying technology “goes from being a necessary service utility to true peer-to-peer communication channel between the merchant and consumer.”
The app will allow users to send stablecoins such as USDC from their crypto wallets directly into a merchant’s account, where they are settled almost instantly with very low transaction fees: 0.00025 Sol, and as quick as sending an email, with no third party in the middle.
The next phase of its development will enable the merchants to send crypto assets back to the consumers, “which will open up new capabilities in commerce not possible before,” according to Sheraz Shere, head of payments for Solana Labs.
Shere previously worked at American Express and Google, helping to launch Wallet and Google Pay.
“Solana Pay transforms outdated one-way transaction models into powerful, two-way merchant-to-consumer relationships, giving brands and retailers a direct channel to surprise and delight their customers in new ways,” said Sheraz Shere, head of payments at Solana Labs, Cointelegraph reported.
Citcon, a leading mobile wallet payment processing and integration company, plans to add Solana Pay to its offering, making it easy for merchants to accept U.S. digital dollars across commerce channels, including online and physical stores.
“Our merchants want to be where their customers are — Solana Pay provides a simple integration to existing check-out flows that will provide our merchants and their customers with a great way to transact in digital dollars for everyday purchase,” said Citcon CEO Chuck Huang.
Solana Pay: payments as fast as sending an email
“Introducing Solana Pay, a decentralized, secure, and open-source payments protocol for the next generation of merchant payments. Launching today, Solana Pay makes it easy for merchants worldwide to accept digital dollars like USDC, and any other Solana SPL Token, for a fraction of a penny and without any intermediaries”.
Essentially, Solana Pay allows a customer to make a payment for a product by scanning the QR code from the merchant’s point of sale, performing a transaction as quick as sending an email and at almost zero cost, while also starting to earn high-yielding interest.
And in fact, immediately after the payment, the customer receives two tokens in his wallet: an NFT of his purchased product to use in the metaverse he wants, and an authenticated NFT receipt that gives him access to the online community of lovers of that verified product.
Solana’s new app accepts USDC and other digital assets. In this regard, Jeremy Allaire, CEO of Circle, had shared his tweet:
“Instant merchant focused payment experience with USDC on Solana, with Solana Pay, an open toolkit for any to enable USDC payments that settle in less than a second with a transaction cost of less than a cent”.
Hence the challenge to PayPal, which includes a 3.49% fee plus a flat fee for its checkout. Moreover, with PayPal, merchants have to wait for transactions to be settled through the bank.
With Solana Pay, on the other hand, there is no middleman and transactions are carried out at a cost of less than a cent.
PayPal eyeing Solana to Scale Payment Network
The payments giant – PayPal is reported to be looking into Solana to scale the payments network. Solana developers conclude that the Solana blockchain network has some room for improvement.
And it could be improved to become four times faster and efficient than its current form.
During the Solana Breakpoint conference held in Lisbon. SOL developers announced that the Solana blockchain is just starting to upgrade just like Ethereum and Bitcoin. SOL’s utility is boosted and profited by the Metaverse and DeFi ecosystems based on the Solana network.
The latest episode of the famous podcast ‘Unchained Podcast’ revealed some surprising things about PayPal. The Senior VP of PayPal, Jose Fernandez da Ponte told that the company have been keeping an eye on the cryptocurrencies like Solana, Polkadot, Ethereum and even Algorand.
The payments giant is said to be persistently observing the L-1 and L-2 platforms to scale the payments.
“I’m sure that if you ask me after six weeks, I could give you four or five different names. This is how exciting it is.”– Jose Fernandez da Ponte, Senior VP (PayPal)
The Co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko of Solana token also opened up at the Conference, stating:
“In realistic terms, Solan is about four times slower than what it should be. The speed of light halfway around the world is about 110 milliseconds. Of Course, it is going to take a lot of sweat and blood and tears to get there. In theory that all could be the limit of how fast the network can work.”
According to the reports, Solana was indeed the most highly volatile than ever from Sept at 87.8%. Majorly a spike in the volatility is perhaps suggestive on an SOL price rail. Decentralized exchanges lock the majority of the total value of the Solana network. Last week the Reddit co-founded announced to invest $100M Solana in Social Media Projects.
The total value of the Solana network is $12.4 Billion.
The Solana Network Is Greener Than Google: Report
According to a Solana report, one transaction on the project’s blockchain requires less energy than two Google searches.
Solana has emerged as a viable alternative to a host of blockchains. In fact, the network is not only efficient when it comes to conducting transactions but is also greener than web browsing giant Google, at least according to a recent report.
At a time when the carbon footprint of Proof-of-Work (PoW) based assets has come under scanner, Solana’s latest Energy Use Report for November 2021 demonstrates a brand new trend taking shape that pushes towards a greener crypto sphere.
Solana Vows Reduce Carbon Footprint
Meanwhile, leaders around the world are bickering about global efforts to minimize carbon emissions. For the cryptocurrency sector, the Solana Foundation appears to be keen on working towards carbon neutrality.
As such, the organization has vowed to reduce the SOL ecosystem’s environmental effects even further. Its plans for the remainder of 2021 include the introduction of a program to assist in making Solana’s validator network carbon neutral and offset the footprint of the ecosystem.
In addition to these steps, the foundation also revealed that it would release reports on the project’s energy stats periodically. In a nutshell, Solana appears as the faster and less energy-hungry alternative to Ethereum, which has been riddled with high gas fees and an electricity bill that burns a big hole in the pocket. The race is now towards merging efficiency and eco-friendly tech.
However, Solana is not the only one that is putting tremendous effort into going green. From prominent blockchain firm Ripple to Avalanche and Neon Labs, several platforms are working towards becoming energy-efficient.
The future is already here.