41% of Surveyed Crypto Investors are Newbies
41% of Surveyed Crypto Investors are Newbies 101
Source: AdobeStock/Pormezz

As many as 41.4% of cryptocurrency investors are crypto newbies, and 60% of them declare they have invested between USD 2,500 and USD 5,000 in crypto, according to the results of a recent survey by alternative investment firm Invictus Capital.

“Today’s investor resembles a 35-year-old German engineer named Günther. He derives his crypto investing information from YouTube, because he values learning how to generate high returns on his investment more than the idealism of cutting out the middleman,” the company said in the survey’s summary.

They are referring to the finding that the country with the highest percentage of surveyed alternative investors was Germany, at 14.1%, followed by the US and Spain, with 7.7% and 6.8%, respectively. The UK and Turkey were ranked fourth, both at 4.8%.

Furthermore, the survey indicates crypto investing is dominated by those aged 31-45, with 41.8%, while respondents aged 25 and below represent 25.1% of the total. Investors aged 25 to 30 hold a 22.9% share, while those aged 45 and above represent only 10.2% of the total.

The survey collected answers from some 3,473 respondents spread across a total of 60 countries. Ofir Sever, a PR spokesperson for Invictus Capital, told Cryptonews.com that the survey’s focus was to determine the modern investor profile, media consumption habits, crypto investing sources, as well as investing habits. The survey was carried out online last February and March, and it targeted investors.

Data was sourced from respondents with access to high-speed Internet, with a significant share of responses from the European Union’s member states and Asian countries, according to the spokesperson. Mobile users provided 94% of the responses, with desktop and tablet users generating a further 5.5% and 0.5%, respectively.

The average sum invested in crypto is reported to be USD 2,500 – USD 5,000, with 60% of those surveyed marking this option. 40% also reported investing USD 100 – USD 2,500, while more than 30% of the respondents have also made investments under USD 100.

With regards to the respondents’ professional profiles, engineers lead the way, at 12.5%, followed by tradesmen and lawyers, both at 9.6%, and finance professionals with 8.6%. Among the listed professions, IT is at the bottom of the list, with 1.6%.

The survey’s summary further stated that:

  • 68% said high returns remain a motivation;
  • 54% see crypto investing as a method to future proof their money;
  • 25% invest to mitigate dealing with middle men;
  • 50% noted high fees on exchanges, quality, and volume on exchanges as the biggest challenges they faced.

And speaking of exchanges, 69% of surveyed investors listed Binance as their exchange of choice, followed by Coinbase with 42.6%, and Kraken with 13%.

74% of the surveyed individuals chose YouTube as their preferred social channel.

Meanwhile, almost 40% percent of respondents said that they invest on a weekly basis, 34.3% said they invest monthly, and 7.7% said they invest once a year, Invictus Capital concluded.

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Learn more:

9% of Surveyed US Teens Claim to Have Traded in Crypto

50% of Inexperienced Investors to Hold Bitcoin Less Than a Year – Survey

18% of Asked Americans Bought Crypto, Most Know Only Bitcoin – Survey

Young Investors Drive Increased Aussie Bitcoin & Crypto Investments

Investors Still Prefer Stocks To Bitcoin, But BTC Wins Over Gold – Survey

More Professionals Trust Crypto Than Want To Get Paid In It – Survey

Crypto is Here to Stay, But There is a Twist, Survey Shows

SnackMagic picks up $15M to expand from build-your-own snack boxes into a wider gifting marketplace

The office shut-down at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic last year spurred huge investment in digital transformation and a wave of tech companies helping with that, but there were some distinct losers in the shift, too — specifically those whose business models were predicated on serving the very offices that disappeared overnight. Today, one of the companies that had to make an immediate pivot to keep itself afloat is announcing a round of funding, after finding itself not just growing at a clip, but making a profit, as well.

SnackMagic, a build-your-own snack box service, has raised $15 million in a Series A round of funding led by Craft Ventures, with Luxor Capital also participating.

(Both investors have an interesting track record in the food-on-demand space: Most recently, Luxor co-led a $528 million round in Glovo in Spain, while Craft backs/has backed the likes of Cloud Kitchens, Postmates and many more).

The funding comes on the back of a strong year for the company, which hit a $20 million revenue run rate in eight months and turned profitable in December 2020.

Founder and CEO Shaunak Amin said in an interview that the plan will be to use the funding both to continue growing SnackMagic’s existing business, as well as extend into other kinds of gifting categories. Currently, you can ship snacks anywhere in the world, but the customizable boxes — recipients are gifted an amount that they can spend, and they choose what they want in the box themselves from SnackMagic’s menu, or one that a business has created and branded as a subset of that — are only available in locations in North America, serviced by SnackMagic’s primary warehouse. Other locations are given options of pre-packed boxes of snacks right now, but the plan is to slowly extend its pick-and-mix model to more geographies, starting with the U.K.

Alongside this, the company plans to continue widening the categories of items that people can gift each other beyond chocolates, chips, hot sauces and other fun food items, into areas like alcohol, meal kits, and non-food items. There’s also scope for expanding to more use cases into areas like corporate gifting, marketing and consumer services, and analytics coming out of its sales.

Amin calls the data that SnackMagic is amassing about customer interest in different brands and products “the hidden gem” of the platform.

“It’s one of the most interesting things,” he said. Brands that want to add their items to the wider pool of products — which today numbers between 700 and 800 items — also get access to a dashboard where they monitor what’s selling, how much stock is left of their own items, and so on. “One thing that is very opaque [in the CPG world] is good data.”

For many of the bigger companies that lack their own direct sales channels, it’s a significantly richer data set than what they typically get from selling items in the average brick and mortar store, or from a bigger online retailer like Amazon. “All these bigger brands like Pepsi and Kellogg not only want to know this about their own products more but also about the brands they are trying to buy,” Amin said. Several of them, he added, have approached his company to partner and invest, so I guess we should watch this space.

SnackMagic’s success comes from a somewhat unintended, unlikely beginning, and it’s a testament to the power of compelling, yet extensible technology that can be scaled and repurposed if necessary. In its case, there is personalization technology, logistics management, product inventory and accounting, and lots of data analytics involved.

The company started out as Stadium, a lunch delivery service in New York City that was leveraging the fact that when co-workers ordered lunch or dinner together for the office — say around a team-building event or a late-night working session, or just for a regular work day — oftentimes they found that people all hankered for different things to eat.

In many cases, people typically make separate orders for the different items, but that also means if you are ordering to all eat together, things would not arrive at the same time; if it’s being expensed, it’s more complicated on that front too; and if you’re thinking about carbon footprints, it might also mean a lot less efficiency on that front too.

Stadium’s solution was a platform that provided access to multiple restaurants’ menus, and people could pick from all of them for a single order. The business had been operating for six years and was really starting to take off.

“We were quite well known in the city, and we had plans to expand, and we were on track for March 2020 being our best month ever,” Amin said. Then, Covid-19 hit. “There was no one left in the office,” he said. Revenue disappeared overnight, since the idea of delivering many items to one place instantly stopped being a need.

Amin said that they took a look at the platform they had built to pick many options (and many different costs, and the accounting that came with that) and thought about how to use that for a different end. It turned out that even with people working remotely, companies wanted to give props to their workers, either just to say hello and thanks, or around a specific team event, in the form of food and treats — all the more so since the supply of snacks you typically come across in so many office canteens and kitchens were no longer there for workers to tap.

It’s interesting, but perhaps also unsurprising, that one of the by-products of our new way of working has been the rise of more services that cater (no pun intended) to people working in more decentralised ways, and that companies exploring how to improve rewarding people in those environments are also seeing a bump.

Just yesterday, we wrote about a company called Alyce raising $30 million for its corporate gifting platform that is also based on personalization — using AI to help understand the interests of the recipient to make better choices of items that a person might want to receive.

Alyce is taking a somewhat different approach to SnackMagic: it’s not holding any products itself, and there is no warehouse but rather a platform that links up buyers with those providing products. And Alyce’s initial audience is different, too: instead of internal employees (the first, but not final, focus for SnackMagic) it is targeting corporate gifting, or presents that sales and marketing people might send to prospects or current clients as a please and thank you gesture.

But you can also see how and where the two might meet in the middle — and compete not just with each other, but the many other online retailers, Amazon and otherwise, plus the consumer goods companies themselves looking for ways of diversifying business by extending beyond the B2C channel.

“We don’t worry about Amazon. We just get better,” Amin said when I asked him about whether he worried that SnackMagic was too easy to replicate. “It might be tough anyway,” he added, since “others might have the snacks but picking and packing and doing individual customization is very different from regular e-commerce. It’s really more like scalable gifting.”

Investors are impressed with the quick turnaround and identification of a market opportunity, and how it quickly retooled its tech to make it fit for purpose.

“SnackMagic’s immediate success was due to an excellent combination of timing, innovative thinking and world-class execution,” said Bryan Rosenblatt, principal investor at Craft Ventures, in a statement. “As companies embrace the future of a flexible workplace, SnackMagic is not just a snack box delivery platform but a company culture builder.”

The city of Jackson is shaping up to be Tennessee’s cryptocurrency hub
the-city-of-jackson-is-shaping-up-to-be-tennessees-cryptocurrency-hub

The city of Jackson is shaping up to be Tennessee’s cryptocurrency hub. In the coming weeks, Mayor Scott Conger will form a blockchain task force to explore how to adapt the novel asset class.

Following Miami’s example, Jackson mayor Scott Conger plans to integrate cryptocurrencies into his city

Conger told that his plan is to encourage the use of cryptocurrency by incorporating it into the city:

“The plans are very simple right now. We want to encourage the use of cryptocurrency. I want to get people with a much greater knowledge of blockchain, than myself, in the room to discuss how we can incorporate cryptocurrency into our city.”

In 2020, Tennessee state representative Dennis Powers introduced a bill that calls for an in-depth study of blockchain technology, focusing on its use cases in banking, payments, lending, and other industries.

Jackson is the eighth largest city in Tennessee, but the rest of the state might be tempted to follow its lead due to exploding cryptocurrency adoption. Last week, the Bobby Hotel, one of the most popular hotels in Nashville, added cryptocurrency payments, a first for the state capital.

Conger says that he is taking pointers from Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who is determined to refashion the South Florida city as the world’s biggest Bitcoin hub.

In February, city commissioners voted to explore Suarez’s proposal to pay municipal employees in Bitcoin and invest a portion of the treasury into the cryptocurrency. Should they proceed with the audacious plan, Miami would easily become the most crypto-forward city in the U.S.

In a March interview, Suarez also mentioned that he wanted to turn Miami into a Bitcoin mining hub, offsetting China’s dominance in the industry. Meanwhile, crypto exchange FTX recently scored a deal to rename Miami Heat’s AmericanAirlines Arena to FTX Arena.

USD 3 Trillion Corporation State Street Goes Crypto
USD 3 Trillion Corporation State Street Goes Crypto 101
Source: Adobe/Lubo Ivanko

US-based financial giant State Street aims to enter the crypto trading market in the middle of this year.

State Street’s trading platform Currenex, that was reportedly put for sale last year, partnered with London-based Puremarkets Ltd (Pure Digital) in order to develop a wholesale, multi-custodial digital currency trading platform, Puremarkets said today, adding that the partners “intend to further explore the digital currency trading space.”

“Pure Digital will be a fully automated, high throughput [over-the-counter] market for digital assets and cryptocurrencies with physical delivery and bank custody,” the company said.

According to them, institutional participants will trade on the platform utilizing bilateral credit enabling efficient capital utilization and control for all trading participants.

“The Pure Digital trading platform will be the first of its kind, offering a wholesale interbank market for Tier 1 investment banks to trade bitcoin and other digital assets. Pure Digital is in discussions with several other Tier 1 investment banks to use the platform, which will provide a high throughput OTC market for digital assets and cryptocurrencies with physical delivery and bank custody,” Norway’s digital asset-focused company Arcane Cryptosaid in a separate announcement. They indirectly own a 37.5% stake in Puremarkets.

At the end of 2020, State Street had USD 3.47trn in assets under management or 11% more than a year ago. However, their revenue dropped by 4%, to 2.9bn, and net income decreased by 5%, to USD 537m.

“While State Street rose to the challenges in 2020, we are laser-focused on fee revenue growth and expense management to continue to make progress in 2021 towards our medium-term targets. We are confident in the trajectory of our business and will continue to drive innovation, automation and productivity to achieve these goals,” Ron O’Hanley, Chairman and CEO of State Street, said.

CEX.IO Launches Crypto Savings Account Service With up to 20% APY

CEX.IO, a leading international cryptocurrency exchange, launches its Savings service as the newest solution in the fast-growing Earn ecosystem. Available in 171 countries, CEX.IO Savings offers users up to 20% Annual Percentage Yield (APY) on 19 different digital assets with the flexibility to move funds in and out of their accounts without any restrictions.

Similarly to savings accounts in the traditional finance industry, CEX.IO Savings offers users a way to generate a passive return on the digital assets they hold. However, unlike a savings account, the international exchange’s Savings product allows customers to add capital or withdraw their funds at any time without fees, expiration dates, or the requirement to lock their holdings for extended periods.

Currently, CEX.IO Savings users can earn interest between 2% and 20% APY on 19 different cryptocurrencies, including multiple stablecoins and DeFi tokens. However, the company is soon expanding its list of supported digital assets.

Users can earn interest in their cryptocurrencies in two ways within CEX.IO Savings. While Flexible Savings provides customers access to their funds any time they need, Locked Savings is for those who are planning to hold their digital assets for a longer time period. While users have to lock their assets until the expiration date, they can utilize this savings type to achieve higher returns with fixed interest rates. On the other hand, the APY for Flexible Savings is fixed on a daily basis. It is reviewed every 24 hours and will respond to the market conditions based on supply and demand.

CEX.IO launched its Savings service as part of the greater Earn ecosystem, which is centered around crypto users seeking to generate an extra income on their digital asset holdings. As the first solution in the Earn suite, CEX.IO launched Staking in 2020, a service that allows customers to earn rewards for locking up their tokens and maintaining the blockchain networks of cryptocurrency projects utilizing the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus mechanism. One of the USPs of CEX.IO Staking is that CEX.IO takes on all the complexities of staking node management and technical integrations.

This allows CEX.IO Staking to guarantee fast capital withdrawals for our users to the extent that users can even place limit orders on our exchange with the assets they staked. This unique feature allows our users to keep generating a passive return on their staked asset while waiting for the price to increase up to the level when they would like to exit from their position.

Founded in 2013, CEX.IO is an international cryptocurrency exchange that offers a wide range of digital asset solutions to over 4 million customers. With a fast-growing ecosystem of innovative products, the London-based company serves all participants of the cryptocurrency market – from retail traders to institutional investors. With a robust, enterprise-grade service, CEX.IO’s multi-functional digital asset solutions feature cutting-edge security while being regulated in multiple jurisdictions, including the United States, Gibraltar, and Cyprus.

In July 2020 and February 2021, CryptoCompare ranked CEX.IO among the top 10 cryptocurrency exchanges worldwide in its Exchange Benchmark Rating. In both reports, the London-based company secured an A grade as well as the third spot in terms of security.

“The way the crypto market was developing in 2020 and 2021 provided digital asset holders a good deal of new options to earn. Staking, lending, and yield farming – to name a few. During the times we have spent in the DeFi sector, we noticed a demand among our users to earn passive income while holding crypto assets. For that reason, we decided to launch CEX.IO Earn, a new service within CEX.IO ecosystem allowing crypto owners to profit by contributing to the blockchain industry. After rolling out Staking and seeing the hugely positive market response, we are now launching Savings. With our new product, customers can earn interest after the coins they contributed on the platform while having the flexibility to withdraw their funds or increase their holdings to achieve better returns at any time,” Konstantin Anissimov, Executive Director at CEX.IO, stated.

GAMEE Token (GMEE) to Launch on Uniswap on 8 April 2021; Public Presale Sold Out in 7 Minutes; Concluded 2.2M USD Private Presale

7 April 2021 – Hong Kong –Animoca Brands and its subsidiary GAMEE announced that the GAMEE Token (GMEE) will launch on Uniswap on 8 April 2021 at 9 a.m. (UTC) at an opening price of 0.0888 USD, paired with ether (ETH), USD Coin (USDC), REVV, TOWER, and Lympo (LYM).

GAMEE held a public presale of GMEE on 2 April 2021 that sold out within 7 minutes. GAMEE has also concluded a 2.2 Million USD private presale of the GAMEE Tokens, with key investors including Metakovan from Metapurse (who recently bought Beeple’s “The First 5000 Days” at auction for 69.3 Million USD), OKEx’s Block Dream Fund, Mind Fund, Genesis Block, Smile Tech, Summit 33, Longling Capital, AKG Ventures, Everest Ventures, and other prominent angel investors.

Uniswap

GMEE is an ERC-20 fungible utility token designed to recognize and reward the efforts of players and to drive engagement on GAMEE’s social casual gaming platform. GMEE tokens have a variety of utility: they will serve as player rewards earned within GAMEE games, they will be used to pay for entry fees in special events, and they will have governance functions, including allowing token holders to vote on GAMEE roadmaps, game deployment, and the distribution of prize and rewards pools.

The supply of GMEE is fixed at 3,180,000,000 with all tokens minted at one time (contract address). More information on GMEE is available in the lightpaper.

Official launch on Uniswap on 8 April 2021

GMEE will be paired with ETH, USDC, REVV, TOWER, and LYM on Uniswap starting on 8 April 2021 at 9 a.m. (UTC). The opening price at launch is set to 0.0888 USD per GMEE. These GAMEE Tokens will be supplied by the GMEE Liquidity Pool (tokenomics and release schedule can be seen at this Medium post).

Successful GAMEE Tokens presale

On 2 April 2021, GAMEE held its first public presale of GMEE, hosted on the web site of its sister project REVV at https://revvmotorsport.com. 800 vouchers were available for this sale representing a total 5,000,000 GMEE. All vouchers were sold out within 7 minutes.

Vouchers will be redeemable for GMEE starting on 8 July 2021, three months after the token launch. The vouchers themselves are not locked and owners can now trade them without restriction on any secondary markets such as OpenSea. More information about the first public presale of the GAMEE Token can be found at the official Medium post.

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About GAMEE

GAMEE, a subsidiary of Animoca Brands, is a high-engagement hyper-casual gaming platform where users complete game missions, compete in tournaments and earn prizes for their activity. GAMEE was founded in 2015 in the Czech Republic and now has 25 million registered users. Start playing at https://www.gamee.com.

About Animoca Brands

Animoca Brands is a leader in the field of digital entertainment, specializing in blockchain, gamification, and artificial intelligence technologies to develop and publish a broad portfolio of products including the REVV token and SAND token; original games including The Sandbox, Crazy Kings, and Crazy Defense Heroes; and products utilizing popular intellectual properties including Formula 1®, Marvel, WWE, Power Rangers, MotoGP™, and Doraemon. Animoca Brands’ portfolio of blockchain investments and partnerships includes Lucid Sight, Dapper Labs (creators of CryptoKitties and NBA Top Shot), WAX, Harmony, and Decentraland. Subsidiaries include The Sandbox, Quidd, Gamee, nWay, and Lympo. For more information visit www.animocabrands.com or get updates by following Animoca Brands on Facebook or Twitter.

PayPal CEO Says Bitcoin Could Be a Chinese Financial Weapon Against the U.S.

PayPal CEO Peter Thiel loves Bitcoin but hates it when China mines or uses it.

In a virtual event organized by the Richard Nixon Foundation, Peter Thiel explained that Bitcoin could be used by China as a weapon in the non-conventional war against the United States, taking advantage of its characteristics to counteract the hegemonic power of the dollar.

“Even though I’m sort of a pro-crypto, pro-Bitcoin maximalist person, I do wonder whether at this point Bitcoin should also be thought in part of as a Chinese financial weapon against the U.S.”

The World vs. The United States

Peter Thiel explained that Bitcoin threatens the very idea of fiat money but is especially dangerous to the U.S. dollar and called on U.S. strategists to take Bitcoin-related developments more seriously when studying the international geopolitical landscape.

However, Bitcoin hodlers are not the only ones who might take offense at being called a weapon of the Chinese communist party. According to the CEO of PayPal, the existence of the Euro itseld¿f is also a weapon of China in its conspiracy to destroy the power of the United States to control some critical aspects of the world economy:

“From China’s point of view, they don’t like the U.S. having this reserve currency, because it gives us a lot of leverage over things like the oil supply chain and things like that. They don’t want the Renminbi to become a reserve currency because then you have to open your capital account and do all sorts of things they really don’t want to do. I think the Euro you could think it is in part a Chinese weapon against the dollar”.

Regarding DECP, the digital currency that China is developing, Peter Thiel believes it cannot be compared to a cryptocurrency and called it a “totalitarian measuring device.”

The Global Tech Race According to The CEO of Paypal

Thiel’s words do not seem very harmonious with the patriotism he so proudly showed when attacking China. Several countries are developing their own digital currencies. Even the United States is beginning to advance the idea of creating a digital dollar with very similar characteristics to those of the Chinese money.

The CEO of PayPal is not concerned about China’s potential to innovate and create but rather about its power to copy things. In response to Michael Pompeo, he explained that China had not made many advances concerning blockchain technology. Still, if China reaches a position of parity with the United States from a technological point of view, the West would lose its advantage as a world geopolitical dominator.

Thiel regretted that Silicon Valley did not see China as an adversary. He pointed to Apple as a company that is a real structural problem for having “real synergies with China.” Google and Facebook were also mentioned by Thiel, who noted that they were friendly to the dreaded Chinese adversary.

Paypal has played a key role in the recent bullish trend of Bitcoin and the increase in cryptocurrency adoption.

Bitcoin price before and after Paypal supported it. Image: Tradingview

As reported by Cryptopotato, PayPal recently enabled service to purchase, store and process cryptocurrency payments for US customers, with prospects to release their support to other countries later in the year.

Hopefully, this massive boost to Bitcoin adoption will not be seen by regulators as a support for China’s crypto plans in the years ahead.

Mark Cuban Praises Ethereum and Keeps Buying Bitcoin
Mark Cuban Praises Ethereum and Keeps Buying Bitcoin 101
Mark Cuban. Source: a video screenshot, Youtube, TMZSports

The Bitcoin (BTC) vs. Ethereum (ETH) debate just became even more complicated thanks to American billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban. He keeps praising ETH as more superior to BTC, but stores much more of his wealth in this most popular cryptocurrency than ETH, aims to buy more BTC, and doesn’t plan to sell it.

In March, he said that ETH is “the closest we have to a true currency,” and now he’s talking about ETH as a store of value alternative as it has “a lot more built-in utility in its organic and native form.”

“Because people are using ETH to buy NFTs, to do more things, and because smart contracts just make it a little bit simpler to do development. And because we’re looking at hopefully a shorter-term evolution to ETH 2.0, […] I think you’ll see there’s more reason to buy ETH right now beyond just being a store of value – but it doesn’t exclude, you know, being a store of value to buy ETH,” the Dallas Mavericks owner said during the recent Unchained podcast.

He added that with Ethereum improvement proposal (EIP) 1559, “everything changes and what happens going forward is going to really impact how people perceive it specifically as a store of value.” Once the proof-of-stake is reached, bringing forth a much higher number of transactions per second, there will be a massive change in the environment, he said, resulting in a reason for some to use ETH as a store of value over BTC.

“I think the applications leveraging smart contracts and extensions on Ethereum will dwarf Bitcoin. Bitcoin will be a store of value but because it has to be done using miners, you can’t just switch to proof-of-stake with Bitcoin,” Cuban said.

Meanwhile, any asset that is looking for appreciation has to be sold with narratives, said Cuban. While gold’s narrative has historically been a hedge against inflation, it has never been that hedge, he argued. Gold’s not actually needed, but the narrative that it’s precious helps build its value.

“And bitcoin kind of is the same way,” he said. There is no correlation between the actions of the US Federal Reserve and the price of BTC, but it’s a “great narrative,” he said. “All assets could go up in price with inflation, and bitcoin could be one of them […] but so could the cost of bananas.”

That said, as a “bitcoin believer as a store of value,” he’ll “make an exception” – he plans to buy new BTC, not spend his existing coins, and use that to buy a Tesla.

Also, recently he said that his crypto portfolio consists of 60% bitcoin, 30% ethereum, and 10% of other cryptoassets.

Reserve currency and global tide

Meanwhile, Senior Commodity Strategist at Bloomberg Intelligence, Mike McGlone, argues that BTC has a better chance to become a reserve currency than ETH. Per a Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index April report,

“It appears the narrative has tilted toward allocating a small portion of assets toward the crypto vs. the risks of missing out on the potential for bitcoin becoming the global benchmark digital asset. Adoption of the benchmark crypto as a global reserve asset has crossed the mainstream threshold, as we see it, and the market tide is rising.”

McGlone said that BTC is replacing gold suddenly rather than gradually and this process is likely to accelerate, “underpinning its price for the foreseeable future and magnifying the dollar’s dominance as the reserve currency.”

Bitcoin fills the need for a digital reserve-asset in a low-yield world, he said. Companies like Visa, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley have “embraced the digitalization of money, buoying the process of bitcoin replacing gold as the global digital-reserve asset,” said the strategist.

Most indicators show a shifting global tide that favors bitcoin as a reserve asset, McGlone concluded.

However, despite this tide, ETH keeps outperforming BTC in the crypto market.

At 15:41 UTC, BTC, with a market capitalization of more than USD 1trn, trades at USD 56,572 and is up by 676% in a year, while ETH (market capitalization – USD 239bn) trades at USD 1,992 and is up by 1,074%.

Signal Turns Into Noise With MobileCoin Integration
Signal Turns Into Noise With MobileCoin Integration 101
Source: Adobe/natanaelginting

Private messaging app Signal, which is also popular among crypto users, announced they’re launching payments using MobileCoin (MOB). But then things turned sour.

Per the April 6 announcement, this is a beta feature in Signal Beta, available to the United Kingdom folks for testing and feedback purposes. They plan to expand the beta following more feedback.

Privacy-focused payments network MobileCoin, which uses the Stellar (XLM) Consensus Protocol (SCP) to synchronize a ledger, is the first payments protocol for which Signal added support, enabling a MobileCoin wallet to be linked to the messaging app in order to send/receive funds, monitor balance, and review transaction history. It’s currently possible to convert to/from the MOB token on crypto derivatives exchange FTX, with other exchanges coming soon, they added.

Signal does not have access to a user’s balance, full transaction history, or funds, they claimed, while users can transfer their funds “at any time” if they want to change services. Per Business of Apps data, Signal had 40m users in January this year.

But the reaction to this rollout wasn’t entirely positive. Some claimed that Signal is “dabbling in shitcoin pump,” and others added that Signal “has alienated all Bitcoiners” with this move.

just setting up my twttr

— jack (@jack)

Other criticism includes comments that Signal creator Moxie Marlinspike is using Signal to pump his MOB bag. Marlinspike has also been a technical adviser for MobileCoin.

However, he told WIRED that neither he nor Signal own any MOB tokens.

In 2018, the project announced a fundraising round led by Binance Labs for USD 30m denominated in ethereum and bitcoin. Per TechChrunch, the payments network recently raised USD 11.35m in funding across two rounds from Future Ventures and General Catalyst.

Furthermore, Marlinspike is listed as Chief Technology Officer in the MobileCoin whitepaper.

And speaking of the whitepaper, developer Tadge Dryja said that he found a MobileCoin whitepaper, which is reportedly just a copy of the ‘Zero to Monero’ paper with a few changes.

Others made similar allegations, such as Riccardo Spagni, the former lead maintainer of Monero.

just setting up my twttr

— jack (@jack)

BlockTower Capital founder Ari Paul, however, commented that MobileCoin is not a fork of Monero, and that Spagni’s claims can’t be used as proof to the contrary as he’s “an altcoin [developer] criticizing competition.”

This was a part of a longer technical discussion and disagreement over the project’s specifics.

Per Marlinspike himself, “Signal chose to integrate MobileCoin because it has the most seamless user experience on mobile devices, requiring little storage space on the phone and needing only seconds for transactions to be confirmed.”

The market situation caught the eye of analysts and traders, including Eric Wall, the Chief Investment Officer of the crypto hedge fund outfit Arcane Assets, who likened MobileCoin to an inedible footlong sandwich filled with a bunch of random ingredients.

just setting up my twttr

— jack (@jack)

At 14:32 UTC, MOB trades at USD 40 and is down by 38% in a day, erasing almost all its weekly gains. The price is still up by 648% in a month.