- Ledger launches crypto-linked debit card for U.S. and E.U. customers issued by Baanx, an affiliate of Contis Financial Services.
- The Crypto Life card, which supports a variety of cryptocurrencies, can be tracked using Ledger Live, the software companion to Ledger’s hardware wallets.
Ledger, the maker of hardware wallets, made a slew of announcements today at its inaugural and now bi-annual open Ledger conference in Paris. Among them was the unveiling of its new crypto debit card, which was created on the premise that, as Ledger VP of payments Iqbal Gandham put it, “we need to start focusing on spending.”
According to the presentation, it’s a Visa card issued by Baanx, an affiliate of Contis Financial Services. The Crypto Life card, which supports a variety of cryptocurrencies, can be tracked using Ledger Live, the software companion to Ledger’s hardware wallets. Prior to the launch of Ledger, a waitlist was established.
Gandham said the card would convert to crypto at the point of sale, or card owners can request an interest-free credit line for 30 days, based on the crypto they hold. He added that a cardholder could have their salary sent to their account early next year and have it automatically converted into crypto. Ledger wants to make it safer to send NFTs between wallets.
According to the press release from Ledger, Cardholders will be able to pay cryptocurrency at more than 50 million retailers and online stores. The initiative is the latest among crypto companies attempting to meet rising demand while advancing cryptocurrency as a medium of exchange rather than a store of value. Notably, cardholders will be able to open a line of credit to obtain cash to spend on the card, using cryptocurrency as collateral, with interest rates starting at 0%. Rates will differ depending on where you live.
The card will be available to customers in the U.K., France, and Germany in the first quarter of 2022 and for U.S. customers in the second quarter. The company said that Crypto Life would initially support BTC, ETH, USDT, EURT, USDC, XRP, BXX, BCH, and LTC. A waitlist is currently open to obtain a card.
Charles Hamel, VP of product at Ledger, said onstage that when users make an NFT transaction, they will either blind sign it (meaning they don’t see what data they agree to share) or they’ll see a large “blob of data,” which is meaningless to most people. This is unlike a standard crypto transaction, where users can typically see where they’re sending funds to when they approve the transaction.
At the point of signing, Ledger’s mobile app will break down the transaction and show what’s going on. Hamel demonstrated an app that provided transaction details, such as the destination address and the token being sent. Besides that, Ledger has integrated Rarible into Ledger Live, allowing Ledger owners to buy and sell NFTs while using the hardware wallet to execute transactions.
Coinbase Exchange has announced that it will begin supporting crypto hardware wallets, starting with Ledger. The announcement was made at the Ledger Open conference, held on December 9th and 10th in Paris. Coinbase’s non-custodial wallet, Coinbase Wallet, separate from the main exchange’s wallet offering, now supports Ledger as its first hardware wallet.
Ledger is a major manufacturer of hardware wallets (cold wallets), which are more secure than online wallets in storing users’ private keys (hot wallets). This will provide an alternative to Ledger Live, a closed environment with only a few applications available, allowing users to interact with blockchain applications through their web browser while still using their hardware wallet. The partnership will be phased at the beginning of the first quarter of 2022. Following that, the Coinbase mobile app will support ledger wallets.
Max Branzburg, VP of product at Coinbase, said that,
“We look forward to making further announcements in the coming months about the most secure Coinbase wallet that Web3 will join.”
Ledger Live has also expanded its in-house trading options with the addition of FTX. This means that Ledger owners can transfer assets from their hardware wallet to the exchange via Ledger Live and continue to trade within the application.
There is a minor snag because Ledger charges a small fee for trades made through this service. Trades will be more expensive.
This isn’t the only way to trade cryptocurrency on the platform. In June, the app integrated its first DeFi platform, ParaSwap, allowing users to swap tokens across multiple decentralized exchanges such as Uniswap, Curve, Balancer, and Sushiswap. The fifth announcement from Ledger was an upgrade to its popular Ledger Nano S model, the S Plus. One significant difference is that it is developer-friendly, allowing developers to test on the actual device rather than an emulator. Another distinction is that it has a larger memory capacity.
Ledger’s chief experience officer Ian Rogers said that,
“Memory is important because, as we bring all these new use-cases to Ledger Live, you need more space. The company is working on another hardware project, implying that it might come out in 2022 or 2023”.
This is not the end of Partnerships: