How Web 3.0 is Transforming Cross-Border Payments: Unlocking Speed, Affordability and Reliability
New technologies like blockchain and AI are revolutionising the internet and the way we handle international transfers — read on to learn how Web 3.0 is transforming the global payments landscape.
What is Web 3.0?
To understand Web 3.0, we should first look at Web 2.0, the previous generation of the internet. It refers to the interactive web that emerged in the mid-2000s, which enabled users to interact with websites, rather than just viewing them passively. Web 2.0 includes cloud computing, streaming media, web applications, social networking sites and user generated content, such as Facebook and Twitter.
Web 3.0 is “the putative next generation of the web’s technical, legal, and payments infrastructure—including blockchain, smart contracts and cryptocurrencies.” - Bennett Institute for Public Policy at the University of Cambridge
Web 3.0 is the latest evolution of the internet, and includes a range of innovative technologies such as DLT and AI:
• DLT refers to Distributed ledgers, blockchain and smart contracts. It includes the infrastructure and processes that allow simultaneous access, validation, and record updating across a networked database. DLT is the underlying tech that blockchains are created from. The infrastructure allows users to view any changes and who made them. It also reduces the need to audit data and is secure, providing access only to those that need it.
• AI refers to processes and algorithms that can simulate human intelligence, including mimicking cognitive functions such as perception, learning and problem solving. Machine learning (ML) is a subset of AI.
Web 3.0 and payments
Lately, there has been greater adoption of Web 3.0 technologies to change the way we handle cross-border payments. The current traditional payment methods are known for being expensive, slow, and opaque. But now, blockchain-based payment networks like Stellar and Ripple are becoming dependable alternatives that provide quicker, cheaper, and secure cross-border payment options.
A significant benefit of blockchain-based payment networks is the ability to make transactions without the need for intermediaries. This eliminates the need for multiple currency conversions, which can be a significant source of additional fees, costs, and delays in today's traditional payment systems. Read our article on how to calculate the True Cost of Payments.
Blockchain technology also creates a transparent and secure ledger that logs all transactions, decreasing the risk of fraudulent activity and improving the overall transparency of the payment process.
Emerging Blockchain payment networks
A blockchain-based (XLM) payment network that is making a name for itself is Stellar. Stellar’s consistent popularity has elevated its market capitalization to $6 billion. Cross-border payments in different currencies can be made at low transaction fees through Stellar. It can process up to 4,000 transactions per second, ensuring cross-border payments can be made effectively and cheaply, especially in areas where traditional banking services are not easily accessible.
Another blockchain-based payment network that is gaining popularity for cross-border payments is Ripple. To facilitate cross-border payments between different fiat currencies, Ripple employs its native cryptocurrency, XRP. Ripple’s primary focus is to offer a seamless payment experience. Ripple ensures this by connecting all stakeholders, including banks, payment providers, and digital asset exchanges. Ripple also offers fast transaction speed and lower transaction charges. Its platform can cater to as many as 1,500 transactions per second.
Mastercard has created its own blockchain-based platform called Mastercard Blockchain, which is intended to make payments secure and transparent. The platform helps to speed up settlement times and lower costs. Mastercard's experience in the payments industry, combined with its brand and broad reach, could help to promote the use of cross-border payment solutions based on blockchain technology.
The Fragmentation Problem
One of the key challenges in the cross-border payment space is the fragmentation of DLT solutions based on regional coverage, target customers, and currencies supported. This fragmentation can leads to higher implementation and operational costs and longer processing times, as different payment networks and currencies may require different integrations, processes, and partnerships to execute payments. To overcome this challenge, we need to look for solutions that aggregate these networks and are able to provide them to business users through a simple interface, or to institutions via a single API.
The Benefits of the Aggregation Model and AI orchestration
An aggregator, like DANIEL, aims to bring the best of Web 3.0 to cross-border payments, leveraging the multitude of DLT payment networks and AI.
DANIEL will be uniquely positioned to address the challenges of fragmented blockchain-based payment solutions by providing a unified platform leveraging these multiple blockchain payment networks. This allows for more efficient and cost-effective international payments, as businesses and consumers can access a wider range of payment options without incurring the cost and complexity to integrate with multiple competing networks. By combining the footprint of these networks, DANIEL can also provide better global coverage than a single network, enabling next-generation payment solutions to more destinations.
To orchestrate the payments in this complex environment, DANIEL has developed proprietary AI-powered payment routing (patent application currently with USPTO) to identify the most efficient routes for international payments, considering factors such as exchange rates, transaction fees, liquidity, availability, locations, currencies, limits, and payment processing times. This optimises the payment speed and reliability as well as minimises transaction costs.
DANIEL is well-positioned to drive the widespread adoption of Web 3.0 cross-border payments.
Web 3.0 technologies offer the building blocks for innovative payment solutions. DANIEL is harnessing these technologies to build a better cross-border payment platform so that businesses and financial institutions can take advantage of faster, more transparent, and more affordable global payments.
Thanks to Web 3.0, cross-border payments can now be faster, cheaper, and more reliable than ever before — unlocking the potential of a truly global economy.