Social networking giant Facebook is about to launch a cryptocurrency of its own in the first quarter of 2020, the BBC claims.
The cryptocurrency, internally called GlobalCoin, will launch in about a dozen countries, with testing commencing by the end of this year.
We’ve heard reports that Facebook is working on something crypto-related for about a year, ever since the company assigned its head of Messenger, David Marcus, to a blockchain-focused role in May 2018. But a recent report shed more light on the project (which, according to Facebook, boils down to a “small team” that’s exploring “many different applications” of the blockchain) — apparently, Facebook plans to launch a global, crypto-based payment, and e-commerce system.
The BBC’s report doesn’t reveal many additional details about the project — the most important bit is the timeline. According to the report, Facebook has already spoken to Bank of England governor Mark Carney about the project, as well as the U.S. Treasury. Official news about the project, BBC claims, might come as early as this summer.
We’ve contacted Facebook regarding the report and will update this article when we hear back.
The news of Facebook entering the space could be huge for cryptocurrencies in general, given Facebook’s user base of 2.38 billion monthly active users as of April 2019. However, numerous questions about the project remain. Will GlobalCoin be open source? Will it be based on an existing blockchain platform, such as Ethereum, or will it be based on a completely new blockchain? Will it be available for use outside of Facebook? Hopefully, we’ll get answers to at least some of these questions this summer.