Bakkt, the crypto exchange owned by Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), announced that its virtual crypto card is now compatible with Google Pay wallets. The new functionality will allow US cardholders to use their Android mobile devices to make purchases in store and online using the crypto held in their wallet.
Bakkt debit card works just the same as any other bank card, except it isn’t linked to a mobile banking app, but a crypto wallet.
With Bakkt cards, crypto users can instantly convert their virtual coins into fiat currency, which is then loaded onto the card and can be spent anywhere Visa debit is accepted around the world. Customers can also use the card issued by Sutton Bank online for purchases and to withdraw cash from ATMs.
Instead of selling their crypto and waiting for a bank transfer, crypto users can tap their Bakkt Card, which also supports Apple Pay, to pay for their purchases.
“This partnership is a testament to Bakkt’s strong position in the digital asset marketplace, to empower consumers to enjoy their digital assets in a real-time, secure, reliable manner. Additionally, partnering with Google Cloud will enable us to continue to build a best-in-class, innovative platform that can undoubtedly scale to meet the needs of millions of users,” said Gavin Michael, Bakkt CEO.
On top of Pay integration, the ICE-owned crypto startup has also expanded this alliance to use cloud services provided by Google Cloud. The collaboration supports Bakkt’s plans to set up an analytics platform with artificial intelligence, machine learning (ML), and geolocation functionality.
Additionally, the move aims to enable Bakkt to market its solutions to retailers and merchants as it seeks to expand loyalty redemption options in the United States.
“Google Cloud has been at the forefront of accelerating digital commerce, powering many retailers and merchants. We are proud to help Bakkt accelerate and scale the availability of their innovative solutions, powered by our technologies,” added Kirsten Kliphouse, Google Cloud President of North America.
Specially issued crypto cards are becoming the norm that is quite popular since they allow users to cash out their digital assets and spend them at thousands of credit card-accepting merchants worldwide. These cards resolve one of the greatest drawbacks of cryptocurrencies, which is the inability to use them in everyday life with the same ease as traditional currencies.
Bakkt’s integration comes shortly after Google revamped the app to expand Google Pay’s offerings beyond digital peer-to-peer transactions, joining a list of big tech companies that continue to edge further into personal financial services.
The brand new version now offers built-in budgeting tools and financial insights with visual spending tools and easy ways to manage spending. It also gives the search behemoth more data about its users as people flock toward digital banking during the pandemic. Google payment solutions compete with services like Venmo (owned by PayPal), Apple Pay, and Square’s Cash App.