Facebook to launch cryptocurrency it secretly worked on for last year

  • 17:12 24 May 2019

Facebook to launch cryptocurrency it secretly worked on for last year

Rumours that the social network giant, and owner of Instagram and WhatsApp, plans to create its own digital currency have been circulating since last year, ONA reports citing Sputnik.

Facebook already attempted to get a virtual currency a decade ago but failed. However, this was before the US-based company secured a 2-billion-strong user base. 

Facebook senior executives met with the social media giant’s cryptocurrency team to discuss the upcoming announcement of its own digital payment system, The Financial Times reports. The company, which also owns Instagram and WhatsApp, is to launch the project, reportedly known inside the firm as GlobalCoin, in a dozen countries at the beginning of 2020, according to the BBC. Its testing is expected to start by the end of 2019.

According to The FT, a secretive team has worked on the “GlobalCoin” goal for over a year. It is expected that Facebook’s cryptocurrency will not only enable its users to purchase things and send money via the company’s platforms but also make payments outside them. 

The reports about Facebook’s ambition to launch its own digital currency surfaced last December. In April, it reportedly registered a company in Switzerland called Libra, set up to develop payments and data analysis software, infrastructure and work on blockchain technology.

The same month, Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg also said at the company’s developer conference that “payments is [sic] one of the areas where we have an opportunity to make it a lot easier”.