Coinbase has announced on its website that its users can use the platform to send money internationally for free, using XRP and USDC.
Initially, the XRP community thought that this might have been an April Fools prank by Coinbase. However, the page seems to have been updated 4 days ago, which makes the prank scenario highly unlikely (but not entirely impossible).
According to the announcement, users can send money internationally by sending XRP or USDC to other Coinbase accounts for free, globally. After that, the recipient can convert the digital assets into local currency. This means that this is not xRapid. This is just an easy way to send money internationally, but the users have to complete the process. Its just a wallet to wallet transfer and the sender/recipient takes care of the fiat transactions. The fact that XRP was chosen however speaks volumes.
These are the countries that Coinbase users can complete digital currency conversions:
If Coinbase does not support the local currency, recipients need to transfer their XRP or USDC to an exchange that supports exchanges from XRP or USDC to local currency.
These are the exchanges that users can trade USDC:
Last time we checked, XRP can be traded against 48 fiat currencies across 200 exchanges. You can review the full list here.
There’s zero fee for sending to other Coinbase users and a nominal on-chain network fee for sending outside of Coinbase. Purchases and sales of XRP are subject to a Coinbase fee.
Moreover, all Coinbase digital assets can be used for transfers. As the page explains:
“You can send any cryptocurrency supported by Coinbase to another Coinbase user or to an account outside of Coinbase. XRP and USDC may be better suited for smaller international money transfers due to their faster processing and lower transaction fees. USDC also has the added advantage of being exchangeable for one US dollar, rather than being volatile in price like other cryptocurrencies.”
However, Coinbase does seem to “push” its users towards XRP by presenting this chart:
To sum things up, XRP is the fastest, most cost efficient and easily available for fiat conversions across 200 exchanges. This is excellent news for XRP since it creates one more usecase and brings additional liquidity to the market. However, we will be waiting for an official announcement by Coinbase to confirm the news.
Update: According to Coindesk: