Tech 7 March 2018Ed Drake
PayPal files cryptocurrency transactions patent
Online payments giant PayPal has filed a patent in the United States for a cryptocurrency transactions system, becoming the latest company to explore the cryptocurrency ecosystem for digital payments.
The patent, filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, is the first to be presented by the company in relation to cryptocurrencies since 2016, and marks a new direction for how PayPal might integrate cryptocurrency’s technology in future.
According to the details of the filing, the PayPal system would create a secondary cryptocurrency wallet with a secondary private key. Transactions would be facilitated by the primary key, with amounts distributed between subsets of the secondary keys, allowing for more seamless transaction times.
The system is designed to solve the issues around the disparity between transaction initiation and execution, according to PayPal, which cited the example for a 10-minute wait for a SegWit (BTC) transaction.
“In many transaction situations, a 10-minute wait time will be too long for payers and/or payees, and those payers and/or payees will instead choose to perform the transaction using traditional payment methods rather than virtual currency. Issues like this have slowed the adoption of virtual currencies despite their advantages. Thus, there is a need for an expedited virtual currency transaction system,” according to PayPal.
The patent follows on from the last filing, which described a modular payment system compatible with transactions in BTC, Litecoin, and Dogecoin, fuelling rumours at the time of PayPal planning support for cryptocurrency transactions.
However, at present, details of PayPal’s plans for the technology remain largely unknown, and the latest patent application is unlikely to offer clarification on how PayPal intends to deploy its cryptocurrency patents.
The filing becomes the latest in a series of patents filed for cryptocurrency and blockchain systems by major corporations in recent months, with many on their second or subsequent patents for the technology.
Last week, it was revealed that Walmart had filed a patent for a delivery system based on blockchain technology, with Lenovo, General Electric and Mastercard amongst those to have released details of their plans for the technology in recent weeks.
Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as BTC coins; tokens on the Bitcoin Cash ABC chain are referenced as BCH, BCH-ABC or BAB coins.
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