Japanese chat app giant, Line, to launch crypto services

Crypto Goes Mainstream: Japanese chat app giant, Line, to launch crypto services

Line, a Japan-based instant messaging application with more than 200 million monthly users announced today its plans to move forward with their cryptocurrency service integration, a prospect that was previously revealed by anonymous sources at the start of the year and that is now coming to fruition.

The Japanese messaging app giant plans to incorporate several financial services such as a cryptocurrency exchange, a lending platform and insurance all within the Line application. According to Line, the exchange will be fully compliant and its currently undergoing application process with the Financial Services Agency (FSA).

The company cites the success of LINE Pay, “a mobile money transfer and payment service available on the LINE messaging app” launched last year, as one of the main reasons to establish a new company, the LINE Financial Corporation (“LINE Financial”) and to provide customers with a wider range of financial services, both in the legacy and digital economy. The official announcement reads:

“In addition to its LINE Pay business, LINE will reinforce its position in the financial business domain through its businesses in LINE Financial Corporation and will continue closing the distance between people, their money, and services. LINE hopes to become a leader in the FinTech industry as the world moves increasingly towards a cashless wallet-less society.”

Big Boys Join Crypto

For crypto holders, traders and investors, the news will come as an exciting development that inches cryptocurrency closer to mainstream adoption, given the reach of the Line app and its popularity within and outside of Japan. However, Line is just one of the latest to board the crypto train.

Other large companies are also exploring the benefits of blockchain technology and integrating crypto-related services into their businesses/products. Kik, for example, a mobile messaging app with approximately 300 million registered users has recently undergone an ICO campaign, netting nearly $100M that allows users to earn and spend KIN inside of the Kik application.

Another noteworthy company is Telegram, one of the most popular messaging apps out there, known for its privacy features, Telegram is planning a $2 billion ICO that will see the launch of the Telegram Open Network and its utility token, TON.

Messaging apps aren’t the only ones looking to expand and capitalize on the technology. One of the largest app stores in the world, Aptoide has also recently undergone an ICO, launching its Appcoins (APPC) token which will be used redefine the “app economy”, improving advertisement, in-app purchases, and quality control.

Not for everyone

Not everyone is ready to board the cryptocurrency train. Among the celebrity voices that have spoken up against Bitcoin are the legendary investor, Warren Buffett, Jamie Dimon and many others.

More importantly, some companies have made sure that they are not associated with cryptocurrencies. One prominent example is VISA, who has recently cut ties with Wavecrest, leaving rendering cryptocurrency debit cards useless for many users.

Other companies are taking action to ensure that they do not play any part when it comes to Initial Coin Offerings and other investment-related content. Facebook has recently announced that it will be banning all cryptocurrency-related advertising, a move that may be crucial when it comes to protecting uninformed investors.