Over the past eighteen months, there has been a severe uptick in companies trying to use Ripple’s technology. This will lead to some pretty interesting use cases, assuming the underlying technology will perform as advertised. Western Union has confirmed they will begin testing Ripple in USD and MXN corridors fairly soon.
Another Notch in the Belt for Ripple
When it comes to companies active in the financial sector, it is more than evident something will need to change sooner or later. Most money transfer service providers have a near-global reach, yet their exuberant fees make this model less appealing that it could be. This has allowed some new competitors to come to market in recent years, primarily because they are intent on using relatively new technology to achieve their goal.
For established players such as MoneyGram and Western Union, it is evident they cannot remain behind in this regard. As such, a lot of people were surprised to learn both entities have begun paying attention to Ripple. The company’s XPR Ledger and xRapid services can be quite valuable to money transfer service providers. It can help speed up transfers all over the world and help reduce fees in a significant manner.
Late last week, Western Union officially confirmed it will be experimenting with Ripple technology in specific payment corridors. More specifically, they identified both the USD and MXN corridor as potential targets for vast improvements. While it remains to be seen how this process will be conducted exactly, this is another validation of how this technology can transform the remittance industry people know today.
21:05: "When you think about crypto, if those start to take off, we need to be ready".
— XRP Research Center (@XrpCenter) February 12, 2019
As one would come to expect, this new development has a lot of people excited, for obvious reasons. Especially the XRP community seems quite happy with the news. One has to keep in mind the use of Ripple’s technology by Western Union may very well have zero impact on the XRP price. After all, Ripple still holds a significant amount of XRP which they can sell to institutional clients such as Western Union. These sales would not reflect on the exchange-based price whatsoever.
It is also the first time Western Union officially confirms they will experiment with this technology where a specific payment corridor is concerned. Although no official timeline has been proposed, it is plausible to assume this trial will be conducted at some point in 2019. Trials like these can take anywhere from a few weeks up to several months before the company decides whether or not it is a viable approach. With Western Union, it is evident they want to ensure everything works as expected.
The announcement also comes at an interesting time. Several months ago, it seemed as if Western Union had no real interest in Ripple technology because it wasn’t necessarily more efficient to use. This second trial, however, seems to indicate something has changed in that regard. What the outcome of this experiment will be, remains to be determined at this time. It still remains uncertain if WU will ever use Ripple’s technology outside of a controlled environment.