Circle Internet Financial Ltd. will cease supporting its 5-year-old Circle Pay mobile app beginning next month in order to concentrate on its blockchain and cryptocurrency ventures.
Circle Pay is a no-fee peer-to-peer payments app that enables users to send money using the recipient’s phone number or email address. The service facilitates cross-border payments in fiat currency and also supports Bitcoin and some other cryptocurrencies. Circle Pay works like a text message, enabling users to include photos, GIF animated graphics, and emoji in their transactions.
“Over its successful, five-year lifespan, Circle Pay was a pioneering social-payment app,” Boston-based Circle said in a Thursday blog post. “Circle Pay has clarified the path forward by highlighting the robust, global demand for people to exchange value as seamlessly as they exchange information. However, that demand largely relied on interfacing with the traditional financial system and untokenized fiat currencies.”
The appearance of fiat tokens and so-called stablecoins that take the volatility out of cryptocurrencies “is significantly advancing our original vision and providing more global, seamless opportunity for people around the world,” the post continues. “As such, we believe that it is appropriate to retire Circle Pay at this time.”
A Circle spokesperson did not respond to a Digital Transactions News request for comment.
The blog post says Circle will now concentrate on new wallets, its Bitcoin-based Poloniex lending business, its USD Coin stablecoin, and other blockchain-based ventures. “We will continue to work toward connecting every person on the planet through an open financial system built on crypto assets and blockchain technology,” the post says.
Circle Pay users no longer will be able to add funds to or send money from their accounts beginning July 8. Circle will begin returning remaining funds from those accounts to customers’ linked bank or card accounts on July 31, with all support ending Sept. 30.