Payment apps are on the rise as cash fades from use, opening a place in the payments space for cryptocurrency.

The usage of payment apps such as Venmo, PayPal, Zelle, and others is on the rise, particularly among members of younger generations, who frequently use them for peer-to-peer payments instead of cash. These apps provide the experience of using a banking service for purchases while allowing for easy payments between individuals. Zelle alone, launched mid-2017, has already processed over 320 million transactions in a little over a year, underscoring the growing popularity of these services as cash becomes more and more rarely used. This does, however, come at the cost of user control over funds at all times, as well as privacy, when paying via third-party service with identification requirements.

Cryptocurrency as the last option for cash’s privacy and user control

The increasing push towards a cashless society has left a void for fans of cash’s full user control, privacy, and instant frictionless nature. Cryptocurrency has the potential to fill this void. A hallmark of cryptocurrency’s decentralized nature is a user’s absolute control over their funds so long as they hold their own private keys, meaning that, like cash, transactions can be made without use of a third party, and without the ability to be blocked. Also like cash, cryptocurrency is private in that it is not necessarily tied to any physical identity, but rather to cryptographic keys that could be under the control of anyone. While most cryptocurrencies have easily traceable transactions, tying them to identities may be more difficult, and several projects focus on offering advanced privacy features.

Financial privacy for consumer payment solutions has increasingly become important. A purchase tracking data deal between Google and Mastercard, as well as Venmo’s default setting of exposing transaction history publicly, underscore the need for private transaction solutions. Several cryptocurrencies obfuscate transactions so as to make them more difficult to trace, however most fail to deliver a smooth user experience suitable for everyday transactions.

Dash’s focus on besting payment apps

Dash remains focused on providing the best payment experience possible in a completely decentralized manner. In addition to the usual hallmarks of cryptocurrency (pseudonymity and complete user control over funds), Dash offers several additional benefits, including instant settlement with InstantSend functionality and untraceable transactions with PrivateSend, more closely approximating a digital cash experience than its contemporaries. Additionally, the upcoming Evolution platform scheduled for release late this year will include features further approximating a payment app-like experience such as blockchain usernames, providing a superior user experience without sacrificing privacy or control over funds.