Forkpay.net has just released its first browser extension, making it extremely easy for anyone to make payments with altcoins anywhere Bitcoin is accepted.
But take a deeper look at the new startup and what’s going on around it, and you will see that Forkpay has a lot more to offer. Indeed, Forkpay could very well become one of the stepping stones needed for cryptocurrencies and blockchain based tokens to achieve global adoption.
Altcoins improve on Bitcoin and add features to what is still the King of Crypto. For example, BitcoinDark and Dash offer anonymity features. Litecoin is the best-known fork, with faster block times than Bitcoin and a different mining algorithm (scrypt), just like DOGE. By contrast, Nxt uses PoS and offers, besides a payment system using its monetary unit NXT, a whole financial ecosystem of features.
Still, no coin has yet reached anywhere near the degree of adoption that Bitcoin has. Even though Bitcoin is based on old and (arguably) no longer bold code and the growth of both the Bitcoin blockchain and difficulty of mining has meant more centralisation in the Bitcoin network, Bitcoin’s dominant network effect means that it continues to reign supreme (at least for the time being).
There are already lots of places in which to spend Bitcoin. From small private retailers, like ititch.com (anonymous domain registration and hosting), to larger ventures like Gyft, Overstock, Amazon and Virgin Galactic. They all see the potential of blockchain-based currencies and regard themselves as first movers in the developing cryptocurrency-fuelled economy.
So, if you want your own particular altcoin accepted in stores, you have to get out there and start knocking on doors.
At least, that is, up till now.
Pay bills with altcoins
With the Forkpay plugin, which is available as a Chrome extension, and soon to be released for Firefox, you can now visit any online merchant that accepts Bitcoin and pay for goods with your favorite altcoin, starting with LiteCoin, PeerCoin, DOGE, NXT, BitcoinDark, and Dash.
UPDATE: The Forkpay Firefox plugin is now awaiting approval from the Firefox webstore. As soon as it is available, the Forkpay ICO at NXT asset exchange will be complete, and the project will be officially launched.
ForkPay.net is very easy to use: When the extension is installed, every time a Bitcoin address is shown on a site, you will see a Fork logo next to it. To pay with alts, you simply click the fork, choose your coin from the dropdown menu, and make the payment. Forkpay.net converts your altcoins on the fly, and you don’t have to go through any registration process.
Forkpay.net wants to become “the most versatile payment solution for cryptocurrency merchants”, so this is just the beginning. The Lithuanian-based startup has further plans in the pipeline, which are in the process of being coded even as I write this.
Crypto currency volatility
There are several players already in the crypto merchant solution field, but where Forkpay.net stands out from the rest is by bringing a BTC > altcoin exchange to the merchant sites (using Coinomat Instant Crypto Exchange’s API), so altcoin users can buy goods, even if the merchant doesn’t accept their altcoin. It’s certainly a problem solver. But will it be enough on its own to enable Forkpay.net to take a significant market share and succeed as a business?
The current volatile monetary value of Bit- and alt-coins is one of the most significant factors preventing wider adoption; many people, understandably, are hesitant to use a unit of monetary value as a means of payment which they cannot depend upon to be as least as good at storing value as their fiat money.
The price of BTC goes up, goes down, and it goes up again – or further down, and because its market cap changes rapidly, investors move in and out of the market, and yes, speculators also try to make huge profits on exchanges, by running pump and dump schemes.
The race is therefore on to solve the riddle: How to create pegged or ‘stable’ cryptocurrencies?
Front-runners include the Nxt platform which, via its Monetary System, now supports the creation of peggable currencies, albeit none have yet been created so it’s not yet known how successful this solution will be in practice.
Another solution provided by the Nxt platform is the Nxt Asset Exchange where you’ll find fiat-pegged assets like CoinoUSD, CoinoEUR, as well as YAN-pegged assets.
Other cryptocurrencies are also in the race to reach the same goal. One of the truly exciting projects still in the pipeline is PAX, a fully decentralized way to peg crypto to anything, which is currently being developed, along with other supporting features, by SuperNET + BitcoinDark lead developer: jl777.
But how hard would it be in practice to integrate such solutions with ForkPay?
Coming up: Fiat pegged crypto
I asked the people behind Coinomat, the crypto exchange responsible for the API that Forkpay uses, and who also happen to be the issuer of CoinoUSD and CoinoEUR on the Nxt AE. Their answer was clear and to the point.
We’ll do it very soon, also MS [Nxt Monetary System coins] will be integrated.
Now, as already mentioned, Forkpay makes it extremely easy for anyone who owns and wants to spend altcoins anywhere Bitcoin is accepted. A fine business idea, and it sure works like a breeze. But… Will this ever become a truly useful service for the everyday consumer who doesn’t mine altcoins, or who doesn’t just happen to hold a bag of DOGE, BitcoinDark or NXT crypto 2.0 tokens?
It seems so.
Couple the upcoming fiat pegged crypto integration with a nice looking and easy to use browser extension, then look at the roadmap from Forkpay. The browser extension is live, operational and its marketing has only just started. Forkpay’s further development plan includes:
- release of Firefox plug-ins;
- a cash-back program for plug-in user;
- server-side plug-ins for merchants;
- ‘reverse’ plugin solution, where merchants can get paid in fiat and receive crypto; and also being worked on,
- paying credit card bills with Forkpay in crypto.
To give you an idea of what the future may hold, let’s see what’s already possible with the solutions we have now. In the not too distant future, these services will most likely be integrated as a self-contained solution by some smart developer or visionary business. We’re still in the early days of the blockchain revolution, so everything will eventually end up being much easier to use. But here’s an approach you can use now:
A 3 step plan to saving money
Exchange USD to CoinoUSD, or EUR to CoinoEUR. It’s easy. Your fiat money will not lose value as the Coino assets are pegged to the fiat value.
You earn interest (0.06% daily at the moment, which is 24% per year) just by holding your Coino assets in your safe and personal Nxt wallet. Now that’s a quite a bit more than my bank offers me and no doubt what yours offers you. No registration required and you can withdraw to any VISA/Mastercard whenever you want.
This is the blockchain 2.0 which secures all your fiat pegged assets as well as, of course, your NXT (the Nxt platform’s monetary unit). This is your money. You own it. Absolutely. Moreover, being secured by Nxt’s decentralized network, it’s 100% safe. By contrast, when you deposit ‘your money’ in a bank account you are by law deemed to be lending that money to the bank. You are in effect, an unsecured creditor of the bank and ‘your money’ is therefore not safe.
You can send or receive any amount of assets, NXT or Nxt MS coins for a fee of 1 NXT. This currently equals €0.01, the amount and destination don’t matter. In comparison, according to the World Bank, sending remittances around the world using the banking system costs an average of 7.37 percent of the amount sent. All in all, cross-border transactions are expected to reach $608 billion in 2015. Now that’s a lot of fees to save.
With your funds in the Nxt blockchain, you can also use all the core and 3rd party features in the Nxt network. The decentralized global p2p marketplace. Issue tokens. Invest in promising real world ventures on AE. Play games. Upload data. Torrents. Build a business, crowdfund it. Keep assets, Bitcoin, altcoins and your investments right there in the same wallet, using Nxt Multigateway features.
Go shopping. Pay with NXT (or any of the other integrated altcoins).
Buy goods anywhere Bitcoin is accepted, using the browser extension.
If you’re a merchant, use Forkpay to set up your merchant crypto payment solution.
Cashback? It’s coming.
Direct payments with your fiat-pegged crypto assets (USD/EUR/etc). Very soon.
Why? Forkpay’s exchange rate does not exceed 3%. With Paypal the standard rate for receiving payments for goods and services is 3.9% + fixed fee, and for payments across borders, it’s up to 5.99% + a fixed fee.
Forkpay.net ICO on Nxt AE
You can share profits with Forkpay by participating in their ICO currently taking place on the Nxt AE.
Nxtforum ANN thread: https://nxtforum.org/assets-board/(pre-ann)-forkpay-net/
Forkpay.net is going to follow the standard start-up cycle. This first asset issue is the seed stage investment. Forkpay.net is going to approach venture funds for a second round investment or buy-out in future at which stage asset holders will be able to make an exit or exchange the assets for the ‘real’ equity. This is going to be an experiment with classical seed stage investment made on the Nxt platform.
Forkpay’s revenue model is based on transaction fees. 50% of the profits will be paid out to shareholders.
Asset ID: 4244599378927106120
Total assets sold at ICO: 3 million. ICO asset price: 1 NXT
To learn more about how to use the Nxt Asset Exchange, read this AE tutorial.
This article is for general information and news purposes only. It does not take into account readers’ personal circumstances or investment objectives. As with any investment, readers should carry out their own due diligence research before making (or refraining from making) any investment decision.