How an app called Strike managed to utilize bitcoin for cross-border remittances, free of charge. The eccentric founder and CEO of electronic payments company Zap has shattered the currency buy-to-sell gap put by banks.
Jack Maller, founder and CEO of electronic payments company Zap, announced something truly revolutionary. With an app called Strike, it can make remittances in one second, even in another country, even in a different currency!
How did they do it? Using bitcoin technology and lighting network!
Too good to be true?
Well, It looks incredible to us, too, but Jack showed off in a video.
What does it look like? He’s in Chicago, USA, and he’s sending a series of $10 remittances every 5 seconds directly to a company developer in Ireland. Who receives euros! Live. On the zoom screen!
But the good news doesn’t end here.
None of the traders are charged the conversion cost to another currency. How do they do it? Because of the movement of dollars in euros is done through bitcoin!
Who is Jack Maller?
We begin with the assurance that yes, he’s the one you see in the photo. 25-year-old Jack may dress like a rapper and not as the typical CEO of a multinational company, but he’s not some ordinary CEO.
Maller bought his first bitcoin in 2013, when its price was below $100. It was love at first sight. From the very first moment, he believed that this kind of monetary system would cause an economic revolution.
When you’re in love, you’re inspired by the object of your desire. You have every incentive to perform miracles. So is Jack. He created an app called Zap in 2017 to help the family cannabis business.
Through Zap, they offered every customer who paid with bitcoin a 10% discount. The idea immediately found a response, as those who bought cannabis prefer to avoid payments from traditional banks.
The app began to attract attention when Jack appeared in a YouTube video of his stepmother paying him 10 cents through Zap to take out the trash. Many offered him money to buy the patent, but Jack refused to sell it.
A year ago it released a new, improved app called Strike, which achieves the immediate conversion of dollars into bitcoin and vice versa. So as long as someone receives their salary, they immediately convert it into bitcoin! It automatically sends the money to the Zap Lightning wallet.
Things Getting Serious
And we come to the point where we understand that things are getting serious. In the spring of 2020, Zap partnered with Visa by integrating Visa Direct to make payments faster in the Strike app.
This way you will be able to have no euros (or dollars or sterling). Only have bitcoin. And yet, even pay for your coffee in euro, as bitcoin is automatically and instantly converted, at zero cost!
The first Strike card will be available in the US in the first quarter of 2021, followed by the EU and the UK.
READ ALSO: How Will Bitcoin Be Used in 5 Years
The Evolution of the Lightning Network
Jack Maller managed to evolve the lightning network, a second-layer application for bitcoin, that you can trade directly, within a second, at virtually zero cost.
With Lightning Network you can create a payment channel with someone else. For example, we’re doing a private channel between me and John.
John sends me 0.01 bitcoin today, 0.02 tomorrow, and 0.02 the day after tomorrow. Total 0.05 bitcoin in 3 transactions.
The next transaction is to send him 0.4 bitcoin. So we have a total of 4 transactions, from which it appears that I have received a total of 0.05 bitcoin and I have returned 0.4 to Dimitris. All this is written on our own private channel, but not on the blockchain.
When we want to end transactions between us and close the channel, we transfer the result to the blockchain.
Yes, but without the security of the blockchain how is the reliability of transactions ensured? The Lightning Network has a built-in fraud protection mechanism. If for some reason I try not to pay John, then he will receive all the guarantees I have paid in advance by creating the channel, which is greater than the amount I owe. The penalty exists to discourage participants from trying to cheat.
Strike in the U.S. seems to be a great success. In the first half of beta publishing, they already have a 5-digit number of registered users and trade millions per month, according to the company’s announcements.
In addition, strike experimentally operates in El Salvador, where the banking network is small and access difficult.
Of course we do not know if there is a flaw in the application, if it can withstand a large volume of transactions or if any other problem occurs. But what we do know is that if what Jack claims is true, it’s going to be a revolution. And not just for foreign remittances.
With this application, we will be able to have a savings account in bitcoin, not in euros or pesos, or dollars. We will be able to do our daily shopping with our bitcoin, as they will be converted directly into the local currency. Without the shopkeeper being charged the percentage he currently pays to Visa or his bank