Strike wallet is 5th most popular finance app in Argentina, but where’s the BTC?
Strike’s digital wallet has become the fifth most popular finance app in Argentina within a week of its launch.
The firm, led by hoodie-wearing CEO Jack Mallers, rolled out its crypto payment services for the Argentinian market on Jan 12. Strike is famed for enabling Bitcoin (BTC) payments via the Lightning network, particularly in El Salvador.
However, according to local media and user reports, the firm’s app in Argentina reportedly currently only supports the use of Tether’s stable coin USDT for transfers via Lightning. Users are able to purchase Bitcoin via the app though, and send it to a third party wallet.
Mallers tweeted on Jan. 18 that Strike’s app is currently ranked as the fifth-highest finance app and the top new app overall on the Argentinian Apple app store, as he emphasized the importance of the Bitcoin network:
“The best monetary network in human history is here, it’s open, and will disrupt the world quicker than anyone thinks. Open networks win.”
Mallers stated earlier this week that Strike is working to bring additional BTC support and features to the app soon, noting that the company is taking the “exact same” same approach to El Salvador.
Since launch we’ve already been approached by many new partners.
We have meetings next week to find sufficient partners and are working on bringing the #Bitcoin tab and other features in the US to Argentina, one step at a time.
The exact same approach we’ve taken in El Salvador
— Jack Mallers (@jackmallers) January 15, 2022
Neither Strike nor Mallers highlighted the use of Tether as part of the company’s initial announcement, however the CEO did note that the app would enable the Argentinian people to “hold a stable cash balance that can be spent both instantly and with no fees.”
According to a rough translation of a Jan. 11 report from local media outlet iProUP, the terms of service for Strike’s app states that it is partnered with the Bittrex exchange for asset custody and fund transfers, and specifies that the app will provide “a currency that users can use to protect themselves” from inflation.
“Although the solution is being promoted as being based on BTC technology, it is actually based on the Ethereum network, as it is the Tether USD (USDT) stablecoin, under the ERC-20 token technology standard,” the publication wrote.
Related: Uruguay reportedly installs its first Bitcoin ATM
A local Strike user named “Nico” on Twitter stated that he able to receive Bitcoin via the app but it was instantly converted into USDT, while Argentinian crypto Journalist Luis David Esparragoza responded the same thing happens on the reverse transaction, where users send USDT to Bittrex which is then converted in BTC.
One function that reportedly supports Bitcoin directly in Argentina, is the BTC tipping feature on Twitter, with Mallers alluding to such via a screen recorded via on Twitter last week.
Cointelegraph has reached out to Mallers for comment regarding the use of USDT, and will update the article if he responds.