Businesses Can Now Accept USDC Payments Using Apple Pay
Stablecoin issuer Circle is adding support for USDC payments on Apple Pay. The feature will allow crypto-centric businesses to effortlessly interact with customers who use traditional payment methods.
USDC Payments Using Apple Pay
Circle has announced that merchants who accept payments in the company’s USDC stablecoin can now do so using Apple Pay. The stablecoin issuer will integrate Apple Pay into its Circle Payments Solutions protocol which allows registered businesses to transact using cryptocurrencies. According to Circle, users with Apple devices will be able to make safe and secure payments for products and services through the Safari browser or in apps using their Apple ID.
With Apple Pay integration, the crypto firm intends to bring customers who don’t transact using cryptocurrencies into the sphere. Traditional businesses can also take advantage of this feature by moving towards adopting crypto for retail payments. Crypto service providers like NFT marketplaces, exchanges, wallets, games, and cross-border payments platforms can interact effortlessly with a wider range of customers using USDC checkout on Apple Pay. Businesses can also leverage the stablecoin’s blockchain-agnostic feature to make payments across eight different blockchains.
To enable Apple Pay support, eligible businesses need to first create a Circle Account and an Apple Developer Account. Then they need to connect the developer account to Circle Payments Solution through API integration. Merchants can then test the feature on a sandbox before integration. At Converge22, an annual developer conference held by Circle, the company announced that it will allow merchants to accept payments in USDC, Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), and Polygon (MATIC). The company also revealed that it will integrate USDC into five additional blockchains by the end of Q1 2023.
Circle has partnered with digital payment platforms Checkout.com, MoneyGram, Stripe, and WorldPay to help merchants integrate USDC payments for retail transactions. With 43.9 billion tokens currently in circulation, USDC is the world’s second-largest stablecoin by market cap.
Earlier this year, investment giants BlackRock, Fidelity, Fin Capital, and Marshall Wace conducted a funding round to invest $400 million in the company. BlackRock also entered into a strategic partnership with Circle to become its primary asset manager. As part of the agreement, BlackRock created the Circle Reserve Fund (USDXX), to which the crypto company will deposit its USDC reserves. The stablecoin is backed by $44.1 billion in cash and U.S. government treasury bonds. The circle will also be the sole investor in the BlackRock-managed fund, which invests 99.5% of its total assets in cash, Treasury bills, and notes. The New York-based bank BNY Mellon, which is the custodian of Circle’s cash reserves, will act as custodian for the fund.
Since last year, U.S policymakers have been working on a bill that will require stablecoin issuers operating in the country to hold their reserves in cash or government-issued treasury bonds. Circle’s move was in anticipation of the law and is expected to generate more revenue for the company. The stablecoin issuer has forecasted returns of $438 million from its reserves this year, and $2.2 billion for next year. Circle has already begun moving its reserves to the USDXX fund and expects to complete the transfer by the end of 2023.
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