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Founded in 2014, Edge is a start-up technology firm based in San Diego and recently announced their collaboration with Mastercard to create the ‘Edge Mastercard’. Formerly named Airbitz[1], the company was founded as a Bitcoin-only wallet provider. Fast forward to today, Edge has created a self-custodial cryptocurrency exchange, where over 17 payment methods have been integrated to sell, send, and receive crypto assets[2]. Their mission statement is to provide ‘privacy and autonomy’ to all, which is at the core of their new venture[3].


What does ‘Self Custodial’ mean?


Edge has utilised client-side encryption, meaning all data are encrypted on the user’s local device before any of the information is send to Edge’s web servers. This means that users always retain full control of their private keys (that represents ownership of crypto assets) with neither Edge nor third parties having access to private keys or any transaction data.


What is the ‘Edge Mastercard’?


The Edge Mastercard will be a loadable crypto debit card, which will charge no interest but allow users to access funding in real-time. With the card, users will be able to spend their crypto assets, such as Bitcoin, Litecoin and Dash, (amongst others) without having to provide personal information, such as names and addresses to the provider. The key aspect here, is that no Know Your Customer, (KYC) information must be provided by the cardholder. By doing so, some have reported that Edge has created the optimal combination of providing an easy way to securely use crypto assets, without compromising the privacy needs of their customers.


How Does It Work?


The card, powered by Ionia[4], (a fintech and savings platform), will connect with mobile pay services such as Apple Pay and Google Pay. Top-ups to the Edge Mastercard will be instant, allowing users to spend their balance immediately without having to wait for confirmations or bank transfers. To fund their accounts, Edge customers will be able to sell the crypto assets inside their wallets and send the fiat currency, such as USD, to their Edge Mastercards to make purchases instead of sending the funds to a bank account[5].


During the initial roll-out phase, the cardholders will have access to more than 10 million merchants in the United States and users can spend the equivalent of up to $1,000 per day[6]. Edge will also utilise official spot exchange rates provided by platforms to ensure optimal exchange rates for customers.


 

Lauren Parmenter

Senior Consultant


[1] https://edge.app/blog/company-news/airbitz-is-now-edge/ [2] https://news.coincu.com/96610-edge-mastercard-no-kyc-debit-card/ [3] https://edge.app/about/?af=google-com [4] https://www.ionia.io/ [5] https://decrypt.co/102279/edge-releases-first-confidential-bitcoin-mastercard [6] https://www.business-standard.com/article/international/edge-launches-mastercard-enables-users-to-spend-with-bitcoin-dogecoin-122060800639_1.html#:~:text=In%20the%20initial%20roll%2Dout,%2C%20co%2Dfounder%20of%20Edge.

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