American fintech giant Mastercard has announced plans to revamp its crypto card program, to enable traditional banks and crypto companies to offer cards to its users for transacting with digital assets.
According to the official statement:
“Mastercard and its partners will test this new capability to enable more banks and crypto companies to offer a card option to people wanting to spend their digital assets anywhere Mastercard is accepted.”
This effort involves Mastercard partnering with crypto businesses to involve “cryptocurrency wallets and exchanges, making it simpler for partners to convert cryptocurrency to traditional fiat currency.”
To allow exposure to cryptocurrency for its users, the New York-based financial institution has publicly announced fresh partnerships with Circle, Paxos, Evolve Bank & Trust, Metropolitan Commercial Bank, Uphold, BitPay, Apto Payments, i2c Inc. and Galileo Financial Technologies.
The revised card program will help Mastercard utilize its massive payments network to not only take away the friction between fiat and crypto but also to provide more alternatives for users interested in using cryptocurrency.
To help reduce the inherent volatility of cryptocurrency and its related conversion complications, Mastercard will take advantage of Circle's dollar-pegged stablecoin, USD Coin (USDC), for instant conversions while initiating the payment transfers.
Related: Visa to approve Bitcoin spending card for Australian startup CryptoSpend
Mastercard’s decision to explore the use of its traditional payments infrastructure within the crypto space may not come as a surprise to those who know about Visa’s ongoing move into offering crypto debit cards.
As Cointelegraph previously reported, Visa intends to distribute a Bitcoin (BTC) debit card to Australian citizens that also will be capable of transacting opopular altcoins such as Ether (ETH), XRP, and Bitcoin Cash (BCH).
Related: Cash or Plastic? Countries Where Crypto Debit Cards Are Fair Game
Research from Cointelegraph last year highlighted the rise of crypto debit cards and identified the various options available to the general public.