In Brief
In a major move for cryptocurrencies, Bank of America has won a patent for a crypto exchange system. This is part of a larger, growing movement to incorporate crypto into traditional financial models.

Crypto Exchange

As cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin continue to rapidly rise in value, countries around the world are beginning to take the cryptocurrency more seriously. In the United States, the second largest bank in the nation, Bank of America, has just won a patent for a crypto exchange system, which they intend to develop for corporate clients. The system would theoretically be able to easily convert one digital currency into another while establishing the exchange rate between those two currencies based on external data.

The patent states that:

Enterprises may handle a large number of financial transactions on a daily basis. As technology advances, financial transactions involving cryptocurrency have become more common. For some enterprises, it may be desirable to exchange currencies and cryptocurrencies.

The proposed system — which is, at present, only a patent and not yet a fully realized system — has three facets: the customer’s account, and the two businesses running the system. Like money in a traditional checking account, the customer would store their cryptocurrency in an account. The second account would hold currency to be sold, and the third would contain the currency the customer is converting to.

Going Digital

Making cryptocurrency so readily accessible and convertible could truly change the nature of crypto transactions. While currencies like Bitcoin are rapidly rising in value, there are some that fear the currency isn’t inherently valuable. Additionally, it’s not yet a widely accepted currency, so at the moment uses outside of online transactions and investment are somewhat limited.

Technology that simplifies the conversion of digital currencies will make them not only easier to use but ideally will further legitimize cryptocurrencies in general.

Of course, not everyone supports the mainstream adoption and incorporation of crypto by big banks. Then there are places like Catalonia setting interesting precedents for cryptocurrency use — the region is considering adopting crypto instead of a central bank. Whether or not you agree with the increasing presence of crypto, Bank of America’s latest move shows that it’s not going away anytime soon.