Signal Messenger is currently testing a new way to securely pay with the messaging app over MobileCoin. You can pay your friends and family via Signal with the cryptocurrency MOB. Your friends can then convert the money back to euro. The new service is currently only available in the UK.
Signal and MobileCoin
Signals’ major competitor WhatsApp has been working on payment features with WhatsApp Pay for some time. Therefore, Signal was also working on a solution behind the scenes. You will soon be able to pay your friends and family quickly and securely, via the payment service MobileCoin. It does not have access to your transactions and therefore respects your privacy. The feature is currently being tested in beta.
MobileCoin is a payment service that works with its own cryptocurrency called MOB. You can pay your Signal contacts directly with your MOB coins via your own wallet that connects you to your messaging app. They can then convert the cryptocurrencies back into euros.
There is a solid reason why Signal prefers to pay with cryptocurrencies. Such transactions operate in a decentralized manner, without a bank or other institution overseeing them. Of course, that fits very well with the privacy-friendly focus of the app.
However, Signal also has to deal with a negative aspect of cryptocurrencies: the high volatility, or price fluctuations. In an interview with Wired, Signals co-founder Moxie Marlinspike says the app is working on a way to automatically convert MOX for the recipient into euros after the transaction is completed. The new payment method is currently only available in the UK. Signal says it wants to roll out its beta in more countries later.