A Vision for the Internet of Value

Science fiction films and television shows are packed with mouthwatering examples of futuristic technology. Warp speed travel on the USS Enterprise, Stormtroopers riding speeder bikes on the planet Endor, psychic crime prevention systems employed by PreCrime, and intelligent androids aboard the USCSS Prometheus, just to name a few.

But most of these same films also come up short when revealing the payment technology of the future. Outside of throwaway lines about credits or using rare commodities as barter, much of mainstream Sci-Fi ignores the limitless possibilities for how and why we pay for things in the future.

Of course, some of what seems like futuristic technology is already coming to pass. We can now wave a smartwatch to pay for a Coca-Cola from a vending machine or for groceries in a checkout line. Apps allow us to split a restaurant bill on the spot. Vacation resorts and cruises provide a wearable that functions as an all-in-one room key, credit card and more.

But these are device or localized payment innovations. What remains difficult today is paying in entirely new and novel ways. Paying over distance, specifically across borders and currencies, is also challenging because existing payment infrastructure is hopelessly antiquated, making long-distance payment applications slow, expensive and cumbersome.

Fortunately, the emerging Internet of Value is beginning to radically improve our payments experience. The financial counterpart to the Internet of Information, the Internet of Value is the ability for value to be exchanged as easily as information. Just as speed and access to information on the Web have expanded knowledge, so will an Internet of Value bring down the cost of financial services, speed up money transfer, and deliver access to the furthest reaches of the world. This Internet of Value will effectively democratize finance.

A Day in the Life

So beyond smartwatches and apps, what functional changes might the Internet of Value bring in the near future? Micropayments and international payments to name a few. Consider what the Internet of Value might facilitate in just one ordinary morning.

6:30 am – The alarm on your phone goes off using a custom made song. As you hear “Wake Up Sleepy Head,” a song commissioned on a lark with friends from a Swedish heavy metal band, you realize you forgot to deactivate it. A doubly painful lapse because your phone is simultaneously cataloguing the play and sending a micropayment in Swiss Francs directly to the band’s PayPal account.

7:25 am – Showered and changed, you hustle down the hallway late with no time to make a real breakfast. Grabbing the last protein bar from the cupboard, the shelf sensor for your Pantry App notes an empty space and pings your smartwatch asking if you’d like more. With a mouthful of bar, it’s easier to press confirm than reply by voice. The Pantry App sends payment in colones and a reorder notification directly to the Costa Rican company that supplies your bars. They in turn queue up a delivery by Amazon drone for after work. Based on your presets, Amazon automatically debits your delivery fee in USD.

7:55 am – On the way to airport in your auto-piloted Lyft, you tap “passing priority” on your account. The car slides into the passing lane and begins issuing micropayment offers to the cars ahead of you, asking if they’ll move out of the way. Fortunately, everyone’s in a generous mood and gladly accepts your payment so you can reach the airport on time.

8:15 am – Satisfied you’ll arrive for your flight with time to spare, you begin planning for the trip ahead. You have all the necessary paperwork and tickets for your trek visiting production locations across Europe, but you realize you forgot to line up wifi coverage. No problem. You enable country-hopping on your cellular account so that it automatically locks you into country specific wifi accounts on all your devices. As you power on your iPad and laptops, they — along with your phone and watch — will automatically connect to local providers and pay them directly in their preferred currencies for the time used from your central account.

11:37 am – Over water now, you power on the screen in the seat in front of you to complete your customs entry paperwork. A few quick swipes pre-populates the forms, and you’re prompted to renew your Global Entry EU account to speed your passage through customs. The device asks for payment and you tap your U.S.-based corporate card to the screen. The provider in Brussels instantly confirms receipt of funds in Euros and approves your application renewal.

Not only does money move as fast as information in these examples, but the Internet of Value makes it possible to instantly fund orders and send payment across currencies. These same exchanges today could take weeks for fully settled funds to arrive.

On a macro-economic level, the Internet of Value could also help drive down the cost of goods and transactions because it enables more liquidity. In today’s country-specific systems, companies and banks must tie up large sums of money in local currencies for countries in which they do business in order to facilitate transactions. An Internet of Value that eliminates the need for these accounts, suddenly frees up large sums of cash that can be more effectively put to use in the economy.

While these examples might not rise to the level of science fiction story material on their own, they are use cases for how the Internet of Value could fundamentally improve our daily lives and dramatically remake the global economy.

Of course, it will take a village to make these possibilities a reality. No one company can build the Internet of Value on its own. Just like the growth of the early web, it will require collaborations and partnerships between many entities. We’re committed to doing our part, and excited to work with device makers, financial institutions and more to realize the Internet of Value.

By working together, we can transactions easier, faster and cheaper, opening up an entirely new universe of possibilities. And by embedding these applications within automobile, wearable and other technology innovations, the Internet of Value might just make a cameo in the next Ridley Scott feature.

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Santander Launches First Mobile App for Global Payments Using Ripple’s xCurrent

Santander One Pay FX — the first Ripple-enabled mobile app for cross-border payments using xCurrent — is now available to Santander’s retail customers in the U.K.

One Pay FX gives Santander’s customers the ability to make EUR and USD payments to Euro Zone countries and the U.S, respectively. International payments made on the app reach their destination within one day, versus three to five days on average for traditional wire transfers.

With the launch of the service, Santander will become the first bank to roll out a blockchain-based international payments service to retail customers in multiple countries simultaneously.

The roll out of One Pay FX will also provide a critical service to the millions of Santander customers who depend on international payments services.

“One Pay FX uses blockchain-based technology to provide a fast, simple and secure way to transfer money internationally — offering value, transparency, and the trust and service customers expect from a bank like Santander, said Ana Botín, executive chairman of Banco Santander. “Transfers to Europe can be made on the same day and we are aiming to deliver instant transfers across several markets by the summer.”

Ripple also supports cross-border payments for Santander in Spain, Brazil and Poland

Ripple will also enable cross-border payments for Santander customers in Brazil, Spain and Poland using xCurrent. Customers in those countries will now see faster transaction times.

“Ripple’s products, including xCurrent, help financial institutions across the globe enhance their customer experience by making the global movement of money more fluid,” said Marcus Treacher, Ripple’s SVP of customer success. “With One Pay FX, Santander customers in can now send payments across borders in a fast and simple way.”

Santander is one of the largest banks in the world with over 133 million customers and nearly 14,000 retail branches. Santander plans to roll out the technology, to more countries and will eventually support instant payments.

As more financial institutions like Santander adopt and build upon Ripple solutions, we can eliminate the friction in global payments, and will be one step closer to establishing an Internet of Value —  where money moves as information does today.

To learn how to use Ripple’s solutions or to become a member RippleNet contact us.

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Ripple Invests $25 Million to Drive Innovation in Blockchain and Digital Assets

Ripple has invested $25 million in XRP to Blockchain Capital Parallel IV, LP — the first fund to accept capital calls in digital assets — and focus entirely on the development of the blockchain space.

The $150 million fund managed by Blockchain Capital will invest in entrepreneurial teams that are building businesses using blockchain technology. The investment will also provide an opportunity to identify new use cases for the XRP Ledger and Interledger Protocol.

As open source platforms, the XRP Ledger and Interledger Protocol provide an avenue for developers to work directly with the technology and build on it. While Ripple’s primary focus has been to remove friction from cross-border payments, the investment Blockchain Capital’s fund provides an opportunity to support and develop additional use cases beyond payments.

“As pioneers in the blockchain sector, we have been on the frontlines and in the trenches with our portfolio companies, like Ripple, building a new crypto ecosystem,” said Bart Stephens, co-founder and managing partner of Blockchain Capital. “There are entire verticals — such as healthcare or identity management — that could benefit from blockchain or distributed ledger technology.”

“Whether it’s using XRP, bitcoin or just the underlying blockchain technology, our goal is to find the best projects and give them the resources to be successful companies that deliver value to customers for the long term.”

As the ecosystem around blockchain continues to expand and develop, Ripple will look to support new use cases of the technology including more investments in business use cases developed by entrepreneurial teams and funds.

“Blockchain Capital is the premiere fund for any project looking to get off the ground in the blockchain space. They have a proven track record for finding and funding the projects that matter,” said Patrick Griffin, SVP of Strategic Growth at Ripple. “This is the first fund that we’ve contributed to, and it won’t be the last. We plan to be major players in shaping the future generation of blockchain or crypto companies.”

Ripple believes in supporting the XRP Ledger and Interledger Protocol and will continue to look for opportunities to support entrepreneurs, companies and funds that share this vision.

To learn more about the fund visit Blockchain Capital’s website.

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The DepositAuth and fix1513 Amendments are Now Available

The DepositAuth & fix1513 Amendments became available on the XRP Ledger in ledger sequence number 37,753,345 (2018-04-06T01:44:42Z).

  • The DepositAuth Amendment lets an account strictly reject any incoming money from transactions sent by other accounts.
  • The fix1513 Amendment fixes an issue where calculation switchovers were not implemented in the fee escalation queue.

Action Required

If you operate a rippled server, then you should upgrade to rippled version 0.90.1 immediately for service continuity.

Impact of Not Upgrading

If you operate a rippled server older than version 0.90.0, your server is amendment blocked. A server that is amendment blocked:

  • Cannot determine the validity of a ledger
  • Cannot submit or process transactions
  • Does not participate in the consensus process
  • Does not vote on future amendments
  • Could rely on potentially invalid data

If you are using rippled version 0.90.0, your server is not amendment blocked but you should upgrade to rippled version 0.90.1 or higher to get important security fixes. rippled version 0.90.0 may stop or restart unexpectedly.

For instructions on updating rippled on supported platforms, see Updating rippled on supported platforms.

For other platforms, please compile version 0.90.1 from source. See the rippled GitHub repo for instructions by platform. For instructions building rippled from source on Ubuntu Linux, see Build and Run rippled on Ubuntu.

Upcoming Features

The previously announced Checks amendment has lost the support of a majority of trusted validators and is not expected to become enabled in the immediate future.

Learn, ask questions, and discuss

Related documentation is available in the Ripple Developer Portal, including detailed example API calls and web tools for API testing.

To continue receiving updates about the rippled server, please subscribe to the Ripple Server Google Group: https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/ripple-server

Other resources:

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Schwartz and Thomas on ILP, XRP and Discovering Bitcoin on StumbleUpon

Tour de Schwartz is coming to a close this week in Asia. Highlights included: David Schwartz’s keynote at Deconomy in Seoul, where he addressed a packed house, and his participation in an exclusive, innovation-focused panel discussion hosted by the Founders Forum in Hong Kong.

Yet, some of the most revealing moments from his time in the region came during an intimate fireside chat at Slush Tokyo.

Following a workshop on Ripple’s products and the XRP Ledger, Schwartz sat down for a fireside chat with Stefan Thomas, Ripple CTO.

The two discussed how they ended up working in the cryptology space, (coincidently, they both discovered Bitcoin using the website StumbleUpon), the stories behind their unique social media handles and how they would change the development of Bitcoin if they knew what they know now.

Schwartz and Thomas also went on to talk about the importance of development using the Interledger Protocol (ILP) and the XRP Ledger, and the relative merits of proof-of-work vs. consensus. The conversation then wrapped up with the two experts addressing audience questions on the significant role of the broader XRP ecosystem, the adoption of Ripple solutions globally and how the realization of the Internet of Value (IoV) will change the world.

Check out the video of the fireside chat in full below.

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XRP Ecosystem Grows with New Listing on Uphold

Uphold — the digital wallet with debit, credit and automated clearing house capability (ACH) —  now allows users to exchange XRP with 34 different currencies, commodities and digital assets.

This listing highlights the expanding XRP ecosystem and deepening pool of liquidity available worldwide.

The Uphold platform’s U.S. users can now access XRP directly, no steps in between. They can also exchange seven digital assets, including XRP, with twenty-three fiat currency and four precious metals, and send money instantly to other members anywhere in the world.

Uphold currently does not allow for the transfer of XRP to an external wallet, but the company plans to introduce this capability to users soon.

“The XRP ecosystem is diversifying and growing rapidly,” said Miguel Vias, head of XRP markets at Ripple. “The listing of XRP on Uphold, a strong retail platform that offers customers easy access to digital assets, underscores the significant increase in interest for XRP.”

Uphold provides members with real-time transparency of digital assets

With digital asset transactions totaling more than three billion dollars to date, Uphold offers a full reserve of member funds and provides complete transparency of its transaction flows, assets and solvency directly through their website.

This high standard of transparency now applies to XRP — further increasing consumer visibility for the digital asset and a positive sign for the future of digital asset transactions.

“Uphold provides our members with the most cost-effective and transparent way to hold, send or convert money anywhere,” said J.P. Theriot, Vice Chairman of Uphold.  “Adding XRP to our available currencies is a natural and exciting step forward for our platform.”

With every new listing, the XRP ecosystem grows and diversifies, and the pool of liquidity available to users around the world becomes greater. To learn more about how Ripple sources liquidity from XRP for on-demand cross-border payments, visit our solutions page for xRapid.

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Tour de Schwartz

The one and only David Schwartz — Ripple’s chief cryptographer and one of the original architects of the XRP consensus network — is currently on tour in Asia.

He’ll be featured on panels, lead a workshop and attend meetups in the region. David is on the ground building connections with the XRP community, sharing his perspectives on the broader blockchain industry and showcasing the technology behind the XRP Ledger.

David is now in Hong Kong with additional stops in Japan and South Korea over the next two weeks. Here’s a detailed breakdown of where he’s been, where he’s going and ways to engage with him along the way:

David’s first stop this week was the Founders Forum in Hong Kong where he participated in a panel discussion with leading blockchain experts. David shared his views on how blockchain is changing financial services, security issues in blockchain protocol and Ripple’s vision for payments.

David also attended a cocktail hour for Token 2049 on Wednesday, an event where one startup literally made it rain physical tokens from the sky in what they called an “airdrop” to raise funds.

His final stop in Hong Kong was a meetup hosted by Orichal Partners, a multi-strategy digital asset investment and blockchain advisory firm in Asia.

On Tuesday, March 27th, David lands in Tokyo where he’ll attend Slush Tokyo’s Opening Night alongside Chief Technology Officer Stefan Thomas and the rest of the Ripple team. Ripple is co-hosting the night with the Slush Tokyo team, and David will be mingling with attendees during the event.

Following a keynote speech by Stefan on the morning of Wednesday March 28th, David will lead a workshop on Ripple’s solutions, the performance of the XRP Ledger and how XRP will contribute to a future Internet of Value.

His final stop is Seoul for Deconomy, April 2-3rd, where David will be among several featured, industry leaders to speak live on stage, including Vitalik Buterin and Roger Ver.

We’re excited to follow David’s appearances over the coming weeks, and we’ll bring you the best highlights from Tour de Schwartz via Twitter. Follow us @Ripple and David at @JoelKatz.

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Ripple and Its Executives Proud to Support America’s Public Schools with $29 Million XRP Donation to DonorsChoose.org

Every Rippler, from the executive team to our newest hires, started their careers in one place — the classroom. It’s in this pivotal setting that children’s dreams are forged and legacies begin.

Take, for example, Ripple’s mission to establish an Internet of Value: a world where money can move like information. In part, it’s the teachers we encounter in our formative years that enable us to pursue ambitious goals like this.

We’re thrilled to announce that Ripple and its executive team are giving back to America’s teachers with a $29 million dollar donation in XRP to DonorsChoose.org. Through DonorsChoose.org, teachers can easily create classroom project requests that support their students’ needs, and donors are able to give to the projects that inspire them.

Our donation fulfilled every request listed on the nonprofit’s website yesterday. Today, nearly 30,000 public school teachers in every state and approximately one million students are receiving books, school supplies, technology, field trips, and other resources vital for learning through DonorsChoose.org.

You can join us by contributing to the new projects that teachers are already creating on DonorsChoose.org. As part of the #BestSchoolDay campaign, you can give to teachers and students within your community, where you grew up or just because they inspire you.

As a company, we’re focused on removing the friction from cross-border payments to promote more inclusion and accessibility within the global economy. DonorsChoose.org applies the same principles of inclusion and accessibility to education.

We’re proud to be working with DonorsChoose.org to nurture the next generation of leaders at public schools across America.

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Ripple CEO at Money20/20 Asia: A New Payments System for the Digital Age

It was standing room only inside the Money20/20 Asia fireside chat “A New Payments System for the Digital Age” — as Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse shared the stage with panel chair Faisal Khan — and outlined his vision for the future of Ripple, XRP and the Internet of Value.

Seats filled quickly in the lead up to the event as the room buzzed with conference goers waiting for Garlinghouse to take the stage.

Prior to Garlinghouse’s appearance, Dilip Ratha the World Bank’s lead economist for migration and remittances, spoke about worldwide remittance trends and provided some insightful takeaways about the future of their costs.

Ratha stated that a critical sustainable development goal of the World Bank is to lower the cost of remittances globally from 7 percent to 3 percent by 2030. When Garlinghouse took the stage, he immediately connected these statistics back to Ripple’s goal of establishing an Internet of Value.

“If we haven’t lowered the cost of remittance payments by 300 basis points by 2030 as a business, we’ve have failed,” said Garlinghouse. “If we’re successful, we’re not talking about 300 basis points. We’re talking about 30 basis points for the cost of remittance payments.”

The statement itself is bold, and the potential positive impacts of lowering remittance payment costs so significantly could be exponential for the global economy. In Garlinghouse’s vision of the future, he’s hopeful a remittance payment of 200 dollars would cost 60 cents rather than 14 dollars on average today.

If Ripple’s Internet of Value is established in this same timeline, not only would the cost of a cross-border payment drop dramatically, but in theory so would the time it takes money to move country-to-country. In this vision the time it takes would be instant.

The conversation then addressed the need for the continued adoption of Ripple solutions by the payments and financial industry to remove friction from global payments.

This fact led Garlinghouse to a critical point: Digital assets could work together with financial institutions rather than disrupt them. He argued that, “global payments and banking won’t be changed from the outside; they will be changed from within.”

Khan then asked Garlinghouse how Ripple’s xCurrent solution compared to the SWIFT system used historically by financial institutions to settle cross-border payments. Garlinghouse did not hold back on why blockchain-powered solutions are superior.

“SWIFT’s published error rate is six percent,” said Garlinghouse. “Imagine if six percent of your emails didn’t go through without additional human intervention.”

Audience questions that were submitted online also made their way on stage. Garlinghouse was asked to address criticisms of Ripple and XRP. The first focused on the digital asset volatility and whether that would prevent widespread adoption for cross-border payments.

“We’re talking about three seconds of volatility risk when using XRP for cross-border payments,” Garlinghouse countered. “The reality is you’re exposed to more volatility when doing a traditional transfer with fiat currencies, and that takes several days.” Garlinghouse was referring to when financial institutions use xRapid for cross-border payments

“The reality is we’re working with decentralized technology,” stated Garlinghouse. “If Ripple goes away, and I really hope it doesn’t, the XRP Ledger will continue to exist.”

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Introducing the Ripple and XRP Video Series

The establishment of an Internet of Value — where money can move like information —  will be the ultimate culmination of Ripple’s story.

It’s a story we’re writing every day using blockchain powered solutions that changes how money moves around the world.

Financial institutions are increasingly looking to be a part of this journey, from the recent announcement of 61 banks in Japan who will use Ripple’s technology in a mobile payments app, to the six financial institutions who are piloting the use of XRP in their cross-border payment flows through xRapid.

Today, we’re excited to  release the “Ripple and XRP” video series to highlight how Ripple got started, what inspired the notion of the internet of value, Ripple’s product vision and roadmap and how XRP stands out as being the best digital asset for payments.

The seven-part series features Chris Larsen, Brad Garlinghouse, David Schwartz, Stefan Thomas and Asheesh Birla. We’re excited to share our story with you.

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