Blockchain.com will allow people to use human-readable usernames in blockchain transactions thanks to a partnership with Unstoppable Domains.
San Francisco-based Blockchain.com now supports Unstoppable Domains, a provider of domain names for blockchains, which are the secure and transparent digital ledgers behind cryptocurrencies. That’s a big deal because Blockchain.com is the world’s largest crypto wallet provider, and people have been stumbling across codenames that are impossible to remember.
When people lose these names for their wallets or the passwords that go with them, they are often unable to recover their assets. This particular deal won’t help you with your passwords, but it will help you with usernames. And that makes it easier for people to send money to each other, with fewer mistakes.
A Wide Reach
Blockchain.com has 32 million verified users in 200 countries, and they can now send crypto to simple, human-readable usernames instead of full wallet addresses.
Through this integration, Unstoppable Domains and Blockchain.com hope to make cryptocurrency more attractive by reducing the risk of human error when sending funds, dramatically simplifying transactions between Blockchain.com users and more than 50 supported wallets and exchanges. by Unstoppable Domains.
Traditionally, sending Bitcoin, Ethereum, Doge and other cryptocurrencies requires entering the recipient’s 25- to 42-digit alphanumeric wallet address, said Matthew Gould, CEO of Unstoppable Domains, in an interview with VentureBeat.
If a person misspells or copies a wallet address, those funds can be lost forever. That’s terrifying, and I remember it stopping me from sending someone a payment that way.
“If you have a typo in a blockchain transaction, the money is gone forever,” Gould said. “It’s emotionally scary, which is not good because your first consumer experience is scary the first time you send cryptocurrency. And I don’t know if you’ve ever sent a payment in Bitcoin or something else, but you’re going to get nervous about it. This is a bad emotional experience.”
It’s also just bad UX design, Gould said.
“If you get a group of 10 crypto people in a room and ask them about barriers to adoption, better cryptocurrency UX is going to be one of the top three things they mention,” he said.
The simple analogy here is your Internet Protocol (IP) address. For the normal Internet, it is much easier to remember google.com than it is to remember the company’s IP address. It is much easier to remember your name than your hexadecimal address for cryptocurrency.
“The funny thing is that this is a case of history repeating itself because we did the exact same thing with computer networks in the ’90s, where the first way to find websites was actually using IP addresses,” Gould said. “Actually, you had to remember long strings of numbers to find the first piece of content on the Internet. And then they invented a naming service so you could use .com names. It’s something very similar.”
Solving the Problem
Unstoppable Domains solves this by introducing human-readable .crypto usernames supported by over 50+ wallets and exchanges, including Blockchain.com. Now, instead of “156i6HJfMWb1h2BEsKpfvZ2tQugqo4vs2w”, users can simply type “[Your name].crypto” to send money to others or transfer between accounts.
Gould said the solution is similar to payment systems like Venmo, which make it easy to send money to a friend because you can simply open an app and tap the person’s face to send money.
And by reducing the emotional fear and friction around sending money to an unknown address, Unstoppable Domains can make cryptocurrency more accessible to mainstream users. It gives you the freedom to send money to whoever you want.
Gould said it’s hard to believe it’s taking a while to resolve the issue.
“It’s crazy to me,” he said. “You have a trillion dollar asset class. And people are sending it to these really long bank account numbers. And visually, it’s kind of ridiculous that people are doing it. And I think that just shows how early we are. It’s really big, but the technology is still very crude. And these things are important. We need to make this easier for regular people, and we need to make it so that you can feel comfortable sending these transactions without that fear or else adoption will be slow.”
Amadeo Pellicce, a product manager at Blockchain.com, said that the company has worked hard to make cryptocurrencies more user-friendly in order to build a new financial system for the Internet. The first step here is to make it easy to send crypto to friends and family using more familiar-sounding usernames. This drastically reduces the chance of errors without compromising user safety. Making crypto payments as easy as sending an email helps pave the way for broader adoption of cryptocurrencies, Pellicce said.
A Great Opportunity
Unstoppable Domains has registered over a million domain names, each minted as a non-fungible token (NFT) on the Ethereum blockchain. In addition to sending and receiving funds, these NFT domains are used to create decentralized websites for publishing content and accessing Web3. Blockchain domains have already become the standard for crypto wallets, and interoperability is at the forefront of Unstoppable Domains’ mission.
Blockchain.com recently raised $300 million at a post-money valuation of $5.2 billion, led by partners at DST Global, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and VY Capital. Since 2012, 76 million wallets have made $800 billion in transactions using Blockchain.com. To date, Blockchain.com has raised $490 million to date.
Launched in 2018, Unstoppable Domains is a blockchain domain name provider and a gateway to the decentralized web. Unstoppable Domains allows anyone to purchase a decentralized domain name that is minted as an NFT on the Ethereum blockchain, giving the owner full ownership and control. Domain names can be used for payments on more than 50 wallets and exchanges. The company is backed by Draper Associates and Boost VC, and supported by grants from the Ethereum Foundation and the Zilliqa Foundation.
There are future issues to address, such as ensuring that transactions on the blockchain can remain private. As it stands now, transactions on the blockchain are viewable by many people, though often the details of the transaction are unclear. Over time, this will be resolved as people figure out how to properly set up payments, Gould said.
“Privacy technology is a few years behind the rest of blockchain technology,” Gould said. “In fact, we’ve worked with a couple of teams to demonstrate sending cryptocurrency to a blockchain domain name and doing it privately. So it’s technically feasible. And I think it is. But it’s not a core product for us right now.”