Coinone, a South Korea-based cryptocurrency exchange, has officially launched a blockchain-based remittance app called Cross, the first of its kind in the country.
The remittance app utilizes Ripple’s enterprise solution xCurrent, allowing for faster and cheaper cross-border payments.
On Monday, Ripple announced that Coinone would offer the new payment service via Coinone Transfer, the South Korea exchange’s payments subsidiary.
According to the announcement, the application is now available to the public after being under development for the last several months and will provide invaluable service to the unbanked or underbanked public.
According to Coinone Transfer, Cross enables immigrant workers and other users to transfer funds across international borders, be it from South Korea to Thailand and the Philippines or vice versa.
Ripple has claimed that its advanced RippleNet technology gives Cross an edge over other remittance platforms in the Asian country, primarily because the app will “not rely on traditional banking rails.”
Coinone Transfer will utilize services at Thailand’s Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) and Philippines’ Cebuana Lhuillier to allow customers to move funds.
Additionally, Cross users will have the opportunity to transfer money directly to another user in Thailand via PromptPay, a MasterCard-powered payment app.
The South Korea exchange has also promised prospective users that they will the app easy-to-use as well as enjoy low fees. The Cross team claims on their website that the app’s system makes completing cross-border transactions “as easy as making bank deposits.”
On top of that, users will benefit from “bulletproof security” as well as only pay 1% fee on all transactions.
According to Ripple, this remittance app comes at the right time, as the cross-border remittance market keeps growing in the region.
Statistically, Thai and Filipino immigrants constitute the two largest groups of immigrant workers in South Korea, and the combined 2017 remittances stood at $17 billion.
The figures for 2018 are expected to be much higher than these, given an increase in both the population of immigrants and the funds sent into or out of the two countries.
Estimates in local media outlets reported this August that there were about 1.74 million immigrants in South Korea, while a 2017 Immigration Service Statistics report putting the number of Thailand immigrants at 153,000, and that of the Philippines at 58,000 people.
Coinone exchange, via its subsidiary Coinone Transfer, announced that it would be tapping into Ripple’s xCurrent in May this year.
Coinone CEO Wonhee Shin said at the time that utilizing the xCurrent platform would allow it to deploy a product that gave its users access to payment services that were both cheap and completed in real-time.
Ripple’s xCurrent service has attracted a number of banks and financial service providers; with BBVA, Banco Santander, SBI Ripple Asia, and U.S giant PNC Bank some of the high profile users that plan to leverage the solution to offer cross-border payments.
In November 2018, Ripple released an update to its xCurrent product, that among other things, allowed users to use the new xCurrent 4.0 to access on-demand liquidity using xRapid.
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