– The Lightning Network just got a bit faster, as the suitably named Bolt Card now enables Bitcoin (BTC) enthusiasts to pay for goods and services using contactless technology.
– A data analyst at the company behind the card, CoinCorner, took the Bolt card on a trial run on the Isle of Man, a British Crown dependency in the Irish Sea.
– MSW as he is known tapped to pay at eight point-of-sale (PoS) devices during his lunchtime investigation.
– In total, MSW 20 paid for 20 breakfasts, lunches, drinks and snacks using the LN prior to the Bolt Card’s release.
– MSW told Cointelegraph that using the Bolt Card felt completely natural and worked just as you would expect!
– A data analyst to the core, MSW also documented the comparative cost of parting with Satoshis, (the smallest denomination of a Bitcoin), versus paying for refreshments with pounds sterling, the Isle of Mans currency.
– In light of the recent bear market price action, the pound value is marginally higher.
– A layer two technology built on Bitcoin, the LN is ideal for instant payments and micropayments. However, prior to the Bolt Card, shoppers from El Salvador to the Isle of Man would pay over the LN by scanning a QR code.
– For Danny Scott, CEO of CoinCorner, this is not as efficient and user-friendly as we need it to be for a mass audience.
– Payment with QR codes is lengthy and awkward:
– In true Bitcoiner style, the Bolt Card is interoperable with industry protocols including Lightning and LNURL.
– Scott emphasizes that they will explore other concepts around how to make The Bolt Card, and the user experience for all Lightning use cases, better.
– In all, the Lightning Network continues to grow, from large payment integrations such as Cash App down to grassroots movements and individuals making micropayments.
– The progress in payments flies in the face of FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried’s recent comments, who got into hot water for suggesting he sees no future in Bitcoin payments.