- Sri Shivananda has spoken out that cryptocurrencies need to show more utility and benefits over traditional currencies.
- People invest in cryptocurrencies, more often as a store of value, much rather than a means of payment, until cryptocurrencies prove that they can be more than that.
- Shivananda was noted saying at The Economic Times Global Business Summit that there needed to be some use case infrastructure for cryptocurrencies.
Sri Shivananda, CTO of the online payment network giant, PayPal, has spoken out that cryptocurrencies need to show more utility and benefits over traditional currencies and other forms of digital payment to become successful in a country like India.
He believes that even though crypto was intended with very real use cases as a more effective replacement over money, it has, over its lifetime, gradually become more of a digital asset than a typical currency.
People invest in cryptocurrencies, more often as a store of value, much rather than a means of payment, until cryptocurrencies prove that they can be more than that. Provide more advantages over other forms of payment, and it will be a while before it takes off.
The Supreme Court of India had only recently taken down the cryptocurrency ban that the Reserve Bank of India has imposed, preventing banks from dealing in transactional activities with firms working in cryptocurrencies.
After strong community protest against the actions of the RBI, the Supreme Court lifted the ban, calling it a barrier to technological innovation and that any concern about cryptocurrencies should rather be enacted by regulating it rather than a blanket ban. Some recent reports also seem to suggest that the RBI stands to appeal the order of the court in the coming months.
Shivananda was noted saying at The Economic Times Global Business Summit that there needed to be some use case infrastructure for cryptocurrencies. Once “business starts following consumers,” they begin to feel like there’s some incentive to be using cryptocurrencies, and adoption rates will increase.
PayPal themselves were part of Facebook’s Libra venture but dropped out recently, stating concerns of the stablecoin not actually serving its core purpose in the near term future.
The goal for Libra was to bring financial services and money to the lower classes of the population who didn’t have access through it under traditional legal terms, but as the project grew, it seemed more so that this wouldn’t be the case in the near term.
India also possesses a very successful digital payment system called the Unified Payments Interface (UPI). This already has strong, widespread adoption across the country due to its easy accessibility and strong, versatile network for bank-to-bank money transfers.
For cryptocurrencies to succeed in India, they will also have to prove to be better than UPI, by showing better benefits and faster transaction rates, while being equally accessible and more secure.