Mar 8, 2018 by Andrei Calina

Over the last months, Ripple has been working on a new payment app which allows payments to be completed instantly, after agreeing to a mass partnership with 61 banks from Japan.

The company announced this Wednesday that the app, which will be presented as Money Tap, should go live by the end of the third quarter of the year. Initially, it will be available with three banks included in the consortium: SBI Net Sumishin Bank, Suruga Bank, and Resona Bank. After this, it will start being rolled out to the rest of the consortium, says a report from CNBC.

Payments to be completed in less than 60 minutes

Ripple declared that the app will come in handy for banks, allowing them to settle 1-hour domestic payments in Japan. In order to use Money Tap, consumers will need a bank account, a phone number or a QR barcode.

SBI Ripple Asia, a joint venture between Ripple and SBI Net Sumishin Bank’s parent company, SBI Grup, is leading the banking consortium expected to adopt the app as soon as it will be live.

“Together with the trust, reliability, and reach of the bank consortium, we can remove friction from payments and create a faster, safer, and more efficient domestic payments experience for our customers,” said Takashi Okita, CEO of SBI Ripple Asia, in a statement released this Wednesday.

Ever since it went mainstream, Ripple managed to attract a lot of critics from a big part of the cryptocurrency community. While most digital coins are hailed as completely decentralized means of exchange, some enthusiasts have cited the company’s partnerships with several banks as a big reason to worry.

Ripple, the first choice of financial institutions

Until now, Ripple allowed financial institutions to use its XRP token as a mean of speeding up payments. We all know that one of their most important partnerships is the one with MoneyGram, which is now testing the cryptocurrency through xRapid, Ripple’s own payment networks. And this was just the beginning.

As for their decision to launch this app in Japan, it’s due to the fact that the Asian country is a huge market for fintech, especially in the areas of blockchain and cryptocurrencies.