Japanese Financial Giant SBI and Ripple Launch Blockchain Payment App in Japan

‘MoneyTap,’ a consumer-focused blockchain payments app co-developed by Ripple and Japanese financial services giant SBI Holdings, has now gone live.

Ripple-powered payments app MoneyTap has now gone live, according to an official tweet October 3. The consumer-focused service was co-developed by Ripple and Japanese financial services giant SBI Holdings.

According to the product’s website, MoneyTap will use Ripple’s blockchain solution xCurrent to enable domestic bank-to-bank transfers in “real time.” Account holders at three participating Japanese banks – SBI Sumishin Net Bank, Suruga Bank and Resona Bank – can send funds using the mobile app, which is compatible with both iOS and Android devices.

After registration, users will reportedly need just their cell phone numbers or a QR code to complete transfers in either Japanese yen or foreign currencies, without a commission fee. The payment system will be secured using the devices’ inbuilt security technology, such as biometric login authentication systems that use fingerprint scanning.

As previously reported, the last remaining obstacle to MoneyTap’s launch was cleared late last month, when SBI Holdings announced it had secured a license from Japanese regulators to handle electronic payments as an “Electronic Settlement Agency Service Provider” under legislation rolled out in March 2017.

According to earlier announcements, MoneyTap will eventually see a consortium of 61 Japanese banks – representative of more than 80 percent of all of Japan’s banking assets – participate in the service.

In other geographic jurisdictions, Spain-based banking group Santander announced this March it would release a cross-border payment app using Ripple’s blockchain xCurrent and RippleNet platforms.