The distributed ledger startup Ripple (XRP) has published the results of its xRapid platform pilot programs and they are exciting, to put it mildly. Financial institutions that have participated in the trials reportedly saved from 40 to 70 percent of transfer fees by not having to use foreign exchange providers.
But perhaps even more significantly, an average xRapid payment took around 2 minutes, while sending a regular cross-border payment today usually takes a couple of days. What is even more impressive, is that the time frame involving the XRP ledger was only a matter of seconds, while the majority of time was spent by institutions converting fiat currencies to XRP and back through local digital asset exchanges.
Asheesh Birla, head of product management at Ripple, has said that “It’s encouraging to see positive xRapid results because they validate what many in our industry already know: certain digital assets have utility. XRP’s utility lies in its speed and scalability, which makes it the perfect fit for cross-border payments. The XRP Ledger can send 1,500 transactions per second.“
The financial companies taking part in the trial were testing payments from the United States to Mexico, which is a market fuelled by competition among a variety of payment providers, who are now turning to Ripple to gain an advantage over their rivals. Moving from pilots to full-scale launches is next in the agenda for Ripple, although a concrete date or timeframe is yet to be established.
The clients are understandably happy with the pilot results, which will enable them to be more efficient and dominate their competition, using traditional money transfer methods. A CEO of payment solution company Viamericas Paul Dwyer has affirmed that “We were very pleased with our pilot results. […] We believe that digital assets like XRP will play a key role in the future of cross-border payments, helping to safely address some of the structural inefficiencies of legacy settlement infrastructure as their adoption grows. We look forward to exploring next steps with Ripple.“
Alastair Constance, founder of Mercury FX has added that “Mercury is delighted with the incredible speed and cost-efficiency of the xRapid pilot phase and is excited about a production rollout in the near future. To date, the Ripple collaboration has been a great success.“
Ripple has already announced a number of partnerships with companies trialing xRapid and xCurrent, which is another platform that does not use XRP. The most impressive of the collaborations have been the Spanish banking giant Santander implementing a blockchain-powered international payments network, based on xCurrent.
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