In the week after the author published the last article of the Digital Payment Trilogy, the entire blockchain industry has undergone tremendous changes. Taking the Politburo meeting as a starting point, the upper level has become more active towards the blockchain. As the first application of blockchain technology, digital currency has naturally entered the high-level vision, and the remarks of former government officials on a financial summit forum have pushed the central bank's digital currency and Libra's confrontation. The peak of public opinion. However, there is still some debate in the industry about the significance of blockchain legal currency. Some voices feel that because the credibility of existing financial institutions is strong enough, it is not meaningful to simply replace the original electronic money with a digital currency based on blockchain, so the necessity of digital currency is also questionable. In the first half of this sentence, the author agrees. It is true that if you simply change the shotgun, it will not make much sense to move all the transfer records to the blockchain. But the blockchain-based digital currency is not necessary for non-existence. On the contrary, it has a very important role for legal tenders including the renminbi: that is, to increase the degree of internationalization of legal currency.
First, the real battlefield of the blockchain legal currency
As we all know, currency internationalization has always been a topic of great interest to all countries. However, in the current world currency market, the dollar is the only one. If other currencies only want to compete with the competitiveness of the local currency, the difficulty is very Big, even if the dollar has been plagued by negative news these years. As a result, countries that want to compete with the dollar need to flank the dollar from another latitude.
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So what is this dimension? As everyone knows, the competition of many commodities is not only reflected in the goods themselves, but also in a series of services that are matched with them. The same is true for money, which is used to pay for it. For competitive currencies like the RMB, the Euro, and the Japanese Yen, if you can’t surpass the US dollar in the short-term, you may wish to pay for it in the matching service. Experience takes the lead. One of the best payment methods at present is mobile phone-based mobile payment and electronic payment.
However, the problem is – as I mentioned in the previous article, the mobile payment tools (such as Alipay and WeChat) that people see now, although its front-end interface is very simple, but there is actually a very behind it. Supported by a strong financial infrastructure, there are not only technical support but also institutional support. At present, the only countries that can provide these two points of support are China. In other words, the experience of China Mobile Payment can not be copied by foreign companies, and Chinese companies can't copy them abroad. Because of institutional obstacles, strong international financial institutions will not endorse credits for your transfer records. Is there any way to bypass these financial institutions? Yes, the answer is blockchain technology.
This is actually the significance of blockchain technology for the payment field: without the support of the technology and system of Chinese-style financial infrastructure, only blockchain technology can make mobile payment applications popular around the world. Or, to be precise, it is already popularized – using the digital wallet to scan the transfer of usdt, and the mobile payment experience of Alipay and WeChat is relatively close. More importantly, the transfer is difficult to intercept. That is to say, the US dollar can pass a stable currency like usdt, Facebook can use a decentralized currency like Libra to penetrate into the clearing links that were previously unreachable, or even spread to business environments that were previously inaccessible, such as Said the main battlefield of the renminbi China.
Under such circumstances, the goal of the central bank's digital currency in China must change – if the original digital currency is mainly to reduce the settlement cost between the bank's B-terminal financial institutions, blockchain technology can If there is nothing, then after Facebook launched Libra for c-end users, China’s research and development of blockchain-based digital currency has become an inevitable trend. Its main purpose is to rely on blockchain technology in China. Under the circumstances of other regions and without involving Chinese users, international users can also use digital renminbi for mobile payment, thereby increasing their internationalization. This is one of the important missions of the blockchain-based digital currency at this stage.
Second, software products may not be the best carrier of digital currency
But the question is, as a high-frequency product, how should the digital currency based on blockchain be cut into people's lives? I simply can't make a wallet for C-side users. This kind of low-convenience product will definitely not be favored by users. It is like in the smart home system, users will not deliberately open the smart phone. Like "Xx appliance control software", if you want to make digital wallet and even digital renminbi quickly integrate into people's lives, you must put this product on a product that people use at high frequency, which can make people unintentional. It can be started at a lower cost, just like the "fingerprint lock to open the living room lamp" and "sound control speaker control appliance" in the smart home system.
To give the simplest example: In the process of China Mobile Payment, there are two software products that play a very big role – one is China's largest social network WeChat, and the other is China's largest e-commerce network Ali. An important part of Alipay. If these two models are not supported by the combination of “high-frequency life scenes (social shopping) + holiday red envelopes”, it is difficult for Chinese users to form initial mobile payment habits, let alone put this habit online. Continued into the whole scene of life such as offline. That is to say, in the process of mobile payment and China's development, Alipay and WeChat are the two biggest carriers. If you simply make a wallet, it is estimated that no one is buying it. Because when mobile payment has just started, this business has not gained people's trust, and the card is not just what people need.
Go back to the blockchain digital currency situation. After five or six years of research and development, the current position of the digital renminbi is already at a relatively clear stage. Where is the problem? In fact, it is the same as mobile payment at first: there is no such good carrier as Alipay and WeChat, which can cultivate the initial payment habits of overseas users. The root cause of this situation is that China currently lacks a more internationalized Internet. Going out to sea products, to cultivate the initial payment habits of international users, not to mention the next spread to the whole scene. Head players Alipay and WeChat are very strong in China, but they are not in the international market. In fact, Chinese Internet companies have done better in foreign countries in recent years, such as a small video platform like Vibrato, but this software lacks a huge economic ecosystem like Taobao and WeChat, and the existence of payment services. More limited.
From this point of view, if China's digital currency wants to have a place in the life scene of international users, it is not only possible to consider software. so what should I do now? Don't forget, in the process of using Internet products, users are not only able to access software such as Alipay and WeChat, but also hardware such as Huawei and Xiaomi. The latter is more international than the former. Therefore, instead of developing some digital wallet software with no rigid demand scenarios, or placing your hopes on existing Internet products that are difficult to go to sea, it is better to add more options. When the software field is more intensive, start with the hardware, use the characteristics of the intelligent hardware such as mobile phones to be more international than the software, let the digital renminbi use the intelligent hardware as the carrier to go to sea, try to cultivate the initial payment habits of international users, and Subsequent payment habits took the lead in expansion.
Third, the development of 5G mobile phones or opportunities for overtaking in digital currency corners
But the question is: Is the combination of smart hardware and digital currency really likely to grab some share in the software-paying market? After all, the use of smart hardware to carry digital currency is actually an alternative to the lack of internationalization of software products. Regarding this issue, the author once mentioned in the previous article: In a specific scenario, using mobile devices for mobile payment is more advantageous than software for mobile payment – due to common tools like ordinary mobile phones. It is not specifically prepared for the payment of such functions, so if you want to complete the payment process, you need to do this through a series of operations. In the case of tight time, this payment method will significantly increase the waiting time, which can be said to be a very bad choice, and it will be faster to pay with professional hardware, which is also to the central bank digital currency and UnionPay. APP is now in the direction of force.
Having said that, it is necessary to mention the combination of smart hardware and digital currency – many mobile phone users may have forgotten one thing: smart hardware like mobile phones, which itself comes with software products, such as photo albums. Apps such as music players and digital wallets. The so-called blockchain mobile phone that was previously hyped up in the industry is actually the bitcoin wallet that comes with the smartphone original. Since hardware vendors often sell through hardware, they often meet their own performance growth needs, so many times they are not working on software. But if you want to, some vendors still have the ability to make more potential products, such as Huawei's Hongmeng operating system. Therefore, if the mobile phone's own wallet application can be combined with legal digital currency, then digital currency can be said to be a huge ecological. Of course, how to mobilize the enthusiasm of users to use digital wallet, and continue this prosperous ecology Is another topic that needs to be explored.
This is actually a potential way for digital currency to cut into the payment scenario through intelligent hardware. As for the specific steps, it should follow the “domestic-international-foreign” three-step plan like the original mobile payment tool: first Through the scenes of high-frequency intensive payment, such as bus, subway, and supermarket, it is the first in the domestic user community to cultivate the habit of using mobile phone built-in wallet + digital RMB trading, and extend this habit to the whole life scene. Secondly, the use of B-side and C-side transactions between domestic and foreign countries in recent years has fostered the use of digital renminbi in the transaction process between international users and Chinese users. Finally, using the characteristics of Chinese smartphones in the global market, the degree of internationalization is relatively high, and the number of potential users of wallets is relatively large, the payment habits of digital renminbi can be cultivated among international users. Only in this case of "government support, enterprise power", it is possible for legal tender to use the good payment experience brought by blockchain technology to create a road overseas when software is not going to work. In turn, it will hedge against the impact of USDT and other US dollar stable currencies, Libra and other decentralized currencies, and even the possible blockchain digital dollars in the future.
From this point of view, the "blockchain hardware" that has been ridiculed in the past, especially the blockchain mobile phone, is not only a hot spot tool, but on the contrary, it may be "blockchain technology + The most important products of intelligent hardware are also an important combination to help the internationalization of the RMB, especially as the wave of 5G networks is ready to go, and China’s technology in 5G (including 5G mobile phones) has been rarely achieved internationally. leading position. It can be said that whether it is China's 5G mobile phones and smart hardware, or the blockchain digital currency that may be carried by it, it may face an unprecedented opportunity to go to sea.
At the end of the article, I still have to mention one sentence – probably influenced by the "minimalist life" and other trends of thought. Nowadays, the Internet and technology industries generally have the idea of "soft and soft" (several). The popular idea of "hardware as an entry, software service profitability", to Xiaomi's deliberate desire to tear off his hardware tags and rely on the Internet, shows the people's longing for light assets and disapproval of heavy assets in this era. However, from the situation in the last two years, there is no such chain of discrimination between light assets and heavy assets: the video network red tape has proved to us that light assets such as entertainment can also be used as Traffic entry, and heavy physical goods can also be used as a means of realizing. The blockchain digital currency scheme is more illustrative: sometimes software is difficult to do, hardware may instead find a way out. In the end, products And the quality of the program should not be based on whether it is "lighter" or "heavier", who can really generate benefits and generate social growth. Value, who should be taken seriously and get more resources, this is the business community everlasting truth.