The popular online payment services provider, PayPal, has announced on Monday that it will be offering U.K.-based customers the option to buy, hold, and even sell cryptocurrencies with its already-instated crypto feature starting this week.
This exciting announcement from PayPal will see its crypto product’s first international expansion after launching its crypto purchase feature in the U.S. in October 2020, which was followed by the PayPal crypto checkout service launched in April this year, also in the United States.
Now, U.K. customers too will have the option to purchase one of four cryptocurrencies on PayPal’s platform. The crypto options will be available on both PayPal’s website, as well as the PayPal app, with Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, and Ethereum on the menu.
PayPal has revealed that this new crypto service will be available to U.K. users starting from this week, and eligible customers will be able to access the option through a new cryptocurrency tab within the next few weeks.
The cryptocurrency feature allows U.K. users to buy or sell the accepted cryptos with as little as £1. PayPal customers will also be able to track the cryptocurrency prices in real-time, and educational material on the website relating to these coins and the crypto market will be included.
It is not yet clear whether or not PayPal will allow U.K. customers to settle payments using cryptocurrencies via the crypto checkout service, or when this feature will be available outside of the United States.
If the crypto checkout service were to become available in the U.K., merchants will receive their payments settled in fiat money, as the checkout service converts the cryptocurrency into fiat before checkout, meaning merchants won’t have to take the risk of the crypto price volatility upon themselves.
PayPal has mentioned that no transaction fees will be applied for customers using cryptocurrency for checkout, which could certainly attract many PayPal customers to make use of the new option, and could also introduce new potential users to digital currencies.
PayPal’s step-by-step move into the crypto space had also seen a partnership formed with Coinbase earlier this year, allowing American Coinbase customers the option to buy cryptocurrency on the Coinbase platform using PayPal as a payment method.
PayPal believes its infiltration into the new asset class would encourage the global use of digital currencies and that the new crypto service could address concerns around the volatility related to cryptocurrencies by settling transactions in fiat cash.
PayPal is relying on Paxos, which is a New York-based digital currency company, to assist with the crypto purchase option, and PayPal says it has communicated with all relevant regulators in the U.K. to launch the service successfully.
We are committed to continue working closely with regulators in the UK, and around the world, to offer our support— and meaningfully contribute to shaping the role digital currencies will play in the future of global finance and commerce,” said Jose Fernandez da Ponte, vice president and general manager for blockchain, crypto and digital currencies at PayPal.
Over the past year, the adoption of cryptocurrencies for the use of everyday purchases by individuals has grown by almost 880% according to crypto analysts, and the expansion of PayPal’s crypto service into the U.K. will certainly aid the growing acceptance of cryptos among merchants as well as online consumers, especially if other payment providers follow suit.