Jack Dorsey’s Square continues to make waves in the cryptocurrency industry.
Earlier this week, the payments giant secured yet another crypto-related patent—this time, one that specifically registers a system for converting payments made in fiat to “non-fiat instruments.” The news was first reported earlier today by industry publication CoinDesk.
Square’s patent application puts it like this: “A method includes receiving a request for payment associated with a transaction between a first user and second user, where the request specifies a payment amount in a fiat currency and identifying an indication that the first user intends to satisfy the request for payment using a non-fiat instrument.”
In other words, users on this proposed “Cryptocurrency payment network” (as the application calls it) may pay with fiat, while recipients can choose to receive their funds in digital currency. The exchange of currencies occurs directly through the network itself, and the transacting parties do not need to take any additional steps.
The payment network would work in reverse as well, meaning someone could easily issue digital currency while requesting that a fiat payment be given to the other person. This could potentially provide another way for retail customers to use crypto to purchase goods at traditional online shops and brick-and-mortar stores.
The patent lists several advantages to the platform’s technology, including its ability to process crypto transactions in “real time.” According to the document, cryptocurrency payments—especially those involving Bitcoin—can often take a minimum of 10 minutes to confirm, whereas Square’s proposed system could potentially cut that down to seconds, making crypto transactions comparable to those of credit cards.
Of course, Square has had its sights set on crypto for some time. Just days ago, Square’s crypto arm—appropriately called Square Crypto—released its first product, a Lightning Development Kit (LDK) designed to ease the process of integrating Lightning technology into new businesses and projects. The kit comes with several tools including demo apps and language bindings for Bitcoin developers.
And Jack Dorsey, the company’s CEO, has been especially complimentary of Bitcoin over the last couple years. In early 2018, he went so far as to tell CNBC that Bitcoin could become the world’s “single” currency.