The Libra revolution started the second Facebook unveiled the project last June, and it has not only impacted the industry directly, but also, it has inspired other big companies to consider similar projects. Despite its current issues with lawmakers and financial watchdogs, Libra is serving as a model for other firms to develop functional digital currencies.

According to a recent patent filing, American stores chain Walmart may be looking to come up with its own crypto project, in the form of a dollar-backed cryptocurrency in the same mold as Facebook’s ballyhooed Libra coin.

“System and Method for Digital Currency via Blockchain”

With the calendar turning to August, most precisely on the 1st, a patent filing under the number 20190236564 was published by the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office.) The document is named “System and Method for Digital Currency via Blockchain.”

The document explains a method for: “Generating one digital currency unit by tying the one digital currency unit to a regular currency; storing information of the one digital currency unit into a block of a blockchain; buying or paying the one digital currency unit.”

Additionally, Walmart states that the proposed digital currency product can offer a low-fee place (or zero fee, for that matter) to store value, and that people can easily redeem and convert it to store cash in specific retailers, stores, and partners. According to the filing, the accounts could be interest-bearing.

Several Scenarios Being Considered

The filing also says that there is the possibility that the digital asset can be developed with the ability to be spent just about anywhere: in that case, there would be USD backing to facilitate deposits and withdrawals. Another scenario has the coin tied to other digital assets, and not to fiat money.

Walmart proposes its digital currency project as an alternative to low-income households that can find banking and other financial services’ prices extremely steep. They could have, according to the filing, “an alternative way to handle wealth at an institution that can supply the majority of their day-to-day financial and product needs.”

The prominent retail store is very ambitious in its project: the “Blockchain-protected digital currency” could even rival traditional banks because it would eliminate the need for credit and debit cards, two of the most widely used financial products of today.

A Pre-approved Biometric Credit

Regarding that, the patent states that “the digital currency may act as a pre-approved biometric […] credit. A person is the ‘credit card’ to their own digital value bank, “which would be a very convenient scenario for people looking to manage their finances in a more direct way.

Walmart is already picturing its cryptocurrency as a part of a broader system, powered by the blockchain technology and acting like a full-fledged ecosystem. The company is forecasting the creation and development of an “open-platform value exchange for purchases and for crowdsource work.”

That way, users would be able to acquire goods and products for themselves and for others, as well. They could use the platform to hire a handyman, or a technician, for example.

Libra, despite its current struggle to earn the green light from regulators around the world, has a similar objective in mind: offering a low-cost value transfer network in an ecosystem powered by its own digital currency.

By Andres Chavez


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