What is Bitwala?
Bitwala is a payment service platform that allows simple and convenient sending and receiving of money to different parts of the World. They aim to provide a faster, cheaper and accessible blockchain-based banking services to anyone in any part of the world. Bitcoin gives way for us to have full control of our financials. Bitwala offers sending and receiving of money, loading of VISA card and paying bills with Bitcoin. Its VISA card is currently the world’s leading Bitcoin prepaid card which can be loaded with Bitcoin or Altcoins and used to purchase in-store, online or over the phone to any merchant who accepts VISA card payments.
Bitwala is built by a team of 12 people with 9 different nationalities which prove that it is global blockchain banking company. Based in Kreuzberg, Berlin, the team share the same belief that everyone should have financial freedom and Bitcoin paved the way for users to have full control of their financials.
Bitwala has made significant developments in Bitcoin and payment industry through the years. It provides Crypto-to-SEPA payment service which allowed users to send Bitcoin to any Paypal account, anywhere in the world. Users can send the cryptocurrency to any Paypal account with the use of a Paypal email address at a flat fee at 0.5% of the transacted amount. Also, users can withdraw funds from Paypal using Bitwala Prepaid Card which can be linked directly to the users Paypal account. The Crypto-to-SEPA payment service is also available with Skrill.
Bitwala also accepts Altcoins but due least demand from them, the service focuses more on Bitcoin. They mentioned in one of their blogs that they received a significant response from the altcoin community, especially from Ethereum, Monero, and Dash, during the altcoin integration. However, when it comes to the actual volume in turnover in the first two months, it did not result in the same way. Compared to Bitcoin’s turnover, altcoins did not make any significant amount to the company. This has led for Bitwala to release a statement in September 2016 on their blog about their experience with altcoins. It said:
“So here’s our experience with Altcoins: Nobody is using them! We had heard this rumor before, from other Altcoin accepting sites, like BitcoinCommodities. It takes some work to implement the option to accept them, and more work to market them. We weren’t exactly sure if it would be feasible to do so.”
The integration of altcoins is made possible by partnering with Shapeshift.io. Bitwala offers the cheapest way to use altcoins for transfers around the globe providing an economical option for the unbanked people who want to send money to the countries. Users can use altcoins in more than 35 countries using SEPA or SWIFT transfers.
Expanding in Africa
Recently this month, Bitwala announced that they will allow sending of money to African countries such as Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda for free. The new service is made possible through their partnership with M-Pesa, a mobile phone-based, money transfer, financing and micro financing company in Africa. This is an additional support to the increase in Bitcoin adoption in Africa.
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