As people have become more comfortable with cryptos, crypto issuers are capitalizing on that trust by expanding their offerings. This includes offering debit cards, which are staples of traditional banks.
Observers agree that crypto issuers who offer debit cards increase the popularity and usage of cryptocurrencies worldwide. Given the volatile nature of cryptos, anything that provides a sense of financial normalcy can make the space more palatable.
As the space grows, offerings like debit cards are expected to rise.
Here, we’ll discuss crypto debit cards and how they are game changers for the financial industry as a whole.
Crypto Debit Card Flexibility
When crypto investors and traders are asked what attracted them to the space, many point to it being a deregulated space. They point to being enamored with the space’s peer-to-peer cash system, which is void of government oversight. While governments all over the world have tried to handicap the space with laws and regulations, their efforts have not throttled the space’s growth.
Part of the reason stems from crypto issuers upping their antes when it comes to their offerings like debit cards. When Bitcoin, debuted, there were few places where holders could make purchases. Crypto debit cards have provided a means for these holders to spend their cryptos with ease. Among the benefits are being able to make purchases online and withdrawing money from ATMs. These debit cards can even be tethered to your e-wallet, further facilitating online purchases.
Crypto Issuer META 1 Makes Debit Card Moves
META 1 stepped up to the plate to offer its own debit card. Its META EXCHANGE, which will include the use of non-bank debit cards. The team at META 1 is boasts that its card will provide “immediate” liquidity for major currencies.
Called the META CARD, META 1’s debit card will available to META EXCHANGE and META Investment Bank account holders.
META 1 met its goals of creating a way for account holders to exchange cryptocurrencies for U.S. dollars and or euros in real-time to make non-crypto purchases. Account holders will also have access to a secure application for their smartphones that provides real-time use of funds in a dynamic fiat/crypto multicurrency economy.
Its META 1 card offering will also include high security features, such as biometric finger print authorization. Also, the card number rotates after each purchase.
Of particular interest is how META 1’s “Know Your Customer” (KYC) efforts established another layer of security. It takes pride in its debit card having a higher-than-industry norm when it comes to no KYC required withdrawal limits.
Simply, the META team calls its card as being built for the Free Human.
Overcoming Challenges and Earning Respect
META 1’s efforts are examples crypto players passionate about provide Humans with the luxuries of banking without the myriad fees and discerning costs that come with traditional banking. That’s one reason its team joined others in offering its own debit card.
Marie Tatibouet, chief marketing officer at Gate.io, points out that crypto debit cards have been around for years. However, it wasn’t until the 2017 ICO craze that they really started taking off. Since then, however, there have been plenty of scandals and insolvencies in the space. This includes Wirecard’s insolvency in 2020 year and Visa ordering WaveCrest to close all prepaid cards in 2018 due to ‘non-compliance.’”
“A major challenge for crypto to overcome is being integrated into our daily lives, crypto debit cards appear to be the solution. The main hurdle for crypto debit cards is regulatory compliance, both with companies like Visa and Mastercard, and governments in the countries they wish to operate in. As countries like El Salvador pave way for crypto adoption and set regulations, these challenges should be relatively easy to overcome.”
In a move that was bound to happen, crypto debit cards are finally being acknowledged by traditional finance industry folks.
Take for example Mastercard. In early 2021, the network acknowledged in a press release:
“Whatever your opinions on cryptocurrencies — from a dyed-in-wool fanatic to utter skeptic — the fact remains that these digital assets are becoming a more important part of the payments world.”
The network is seeing users increasingly take advantage of crypto cards to access these assets and convert them to traditional currencies for spending. To be clear, this data is not of any individuals — it’s anonymized and in aggregate — but the trend is unmistakable.
With its newfound acknowledgement of cryptos as a growing force, Mastercard wants a piece of the crypto pie. It’s preparing for the future of cryptos and payments, by beginning to support “select” cryptos directly to its network.
While it states that it will be “very thoughtful” about which assets it supports “based on our principles for digital currencies,” crypto players should be careful. For example, Mastercard add that its so-called principal focus “consumer protections and compliance.”
Is that code for laws and regulations?
With so many advantages and advanced security measures, we expect that many countries will soon implement Blockchain technology into their monetary systems. The great benefit of having this card is that you can spend your cryptocurrencies even if you are in some country with a lack of support for Blockchain ATMs and exchanges.
Steven Kalifowitz, Crypto.com’s chief marketing officer at Crypto.com stated to U.S. News that most traditional banks were established a century or more before the internet. Crypto card issuers, however, are modern firms built on digital platforms. That makes them stand out, and even be more attractive, than traditional bands.
Kalifowitz also told U.S. News:
“Tight regulatory frameworks ensure their security. (The cards’) embracement from major global payments processors like Visa ensure users can pay almost anywhere.”
As crypto players like META 1 become increasingly more financially savvy and gain the confidence to go up against traditional financial institutions, expect to see more offering like crypto debit cards.
The idea of treating consumers with respect first and not as simply money makers, META 1’s debit card offering is important.
If nothing else, its efforts is just one of many that are mitigating the naysayers and earning the respect of many.