Strike CEO Jack Mallers has defended the company against accusations it hadn’t delivered on its promised Bitcoin Lightning Network roadmap.
Mallers recently clarified at the Bitcoin Miami 2023 conference that Strike had not promised live fiat on and off ramps.
Strike CEO Says No On and Off Ramps Yet
Twitter user fiatjaf criticized Strike for offering a “dumb” custodial wallet with no access to the banking system. They also criticized the Strike wallet’s limited use in USD transfers.
Mallers said that the firm wants to offer banking access, but has so far only found a favorable regulatory environment in El Salvador.
“What is not live today is all of our on and offramps.”
He added that Strike would activate its Send Globally remittance service in more countries.
Strike’s Send Globally allows verified Striker users to transfer money between the U.S. and several countries including Ghana, Kenya, and Vietnam.
Strike converts the sender’s source currency into Bitcoin which overseas partners receive over the Lightning Network.
Bitcoin’s Lightning network is a so-called layer-two solution that offers dramatically higher transaction throughput than the base layer. The sender and recipient exchange small payments through channels.
A Strike partner converts the Bitcoin into a local currency the recipient can use.
According to Mallers, Strike aims to use its expanded Send Globally service and on and off ramps to compete with Binance.
“We don’t just want [Strike] to be a Lightning wallet.”
Strike previously announced that it would roll out Send Globally in 65 countries.
Bitcoin Payments Progress But More Work is Needed
Mallers’ defense comes on the 13th anniversary of the so-called Bitcoin Pizza Day. Software developer Laszlo Hanyecz paid 10,000 Bitcoin (BTC) to buy two pizzas that became the first items paid for using the oldest crypto.
Mallers believes, 10 years later, there is a market for frictionless Tether and Bitcoin services in crypto payments. The firm’s early foray into payments helped creators earn Bitcoin tips from Twitter fans. The service has since been discontinued.
Bitcoin bull Michael Saylor recently incorporated Bitcoin’s Lightning Network into his corporate email address. The Lightning Address Protocol allows senders to use a recipient‘s email address to send funds.
Payment processors can use stablecoins or cash to settle Bitcoin payments. Stablecoins are cryptocurrencies pegged to the value of a fiat currency like the U.S. dollar.
Popular settlement stablecoins include Tether and USDC. Stablecoins protect merchants accepting Bitcoin from the cryptocurrency’s volatility.
The world’s largest crypto exchange Binance recently started using the Lightning Network to clear its Bitcoin transaction payment backlog.
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