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Global Payment Systems Stuck in Past, Says Ex-PayPal Chief in Recent Talk

David Marcus, ex-PayPal executive, points to Bitcoin's Lightning network as a solution for outdated global payment systems.

Fri, 15 Sep 2023, 10:44 am UTC

Sending an email or text today is instantaneous, yet worldwide money transfers remain painfully antiquated, notes David Marcus, former president of PayPal. On September 11, while speaking to CNBC, Marcus expressed his optimism about the potential of Bitcoin's Lightning network to streamline global financial transactions.

Marcus stressed the contrast between the ease of modern communication and the complexities of international monetary transfers. He likened the process of sending funds to someone abroad, who doesn't use the same financial app, to the outdated practice of sending a fax.

The lack of a global standard for online money transfers complicates the process further. Sending money to a non-U.S. resident, for instance, means acquiring their bank details and physically going to a bank. This tedious procedure would cost around $50 for an international transaction. If initiated post Friday evening, the entire process gets delayed even further.

Throwing light on the vision of Lightspark, the Bitcoin Lightning-focused payment platform he co-founded in May 2022, Marcus stated that their primary objective is to address this outdated system by harnessing the Bitcoin Lightning network. However, he clarified that he doesn't see the network as a medium for day-to-day purchases.

Marcus explained that he believes Bitcoin will not evolve into a currency used for everyday shopping. Instead, its main function will be for international transactions, such as when someone sends U.S. dollars and the recipient receives it in Japanese Yen or Euros.

Highlighting the combination of Bitcoin’s foundational structure and the immediacy of Lightning’s payment system, Marcus expressed confidence in offering quick settlements with minimal costs.

As the world races toward digital communication, global financial transactions need a revamp, and Bitcoin's Lightning network might just be the catalyst.

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