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Chinese New Year Will See More Digital Red Envelopes Than Before

Although the rest of the celebrated New Year some time ago, the Chinese New Year celebrations commence this weekend. Millions of people will exchange cash-filled red envelopes throughout the country. This tradition is rather old, but it is undergoing some significant changes. With most envelopes being exchanged digitally, Bitcoin opportunities arise all over the country.

It is expected the vast majority of red envelopes will be exchanged in digital format this year. Popular messaging systems such as WeChat, will be the main platform to exchange these envelopes. Last year, 32 billion digital red envelopes were sent out all across China. Comparing that number to 2015, the digital trend saw a 1,000% increase. It is expected this trend to continue in 2017, with up to 100 billion digital envelopes expected to be sent out.

Digital Red Envelopes Create Bitcoin Opportunities

The world of money is changing all around us and digital cash is becoming the new norm. Sending money to anyone in the world has become far more convenient thanks to the usage of smartphones. Mobile peer-to-peer payments are booming, which will also benefit Bitcoin in the long run.

Although one could argue this is a trend mostly embraced by younger people, that is not necessarily the case. Social messaging is a defining app of the smartphone era, that much is certain. Even older generations start to get the hang of how the system works, even though they nay don’t necessarily use it to send money on a regular basis. When it comes to the Chinese New year, however, it appears all generations in China are leaning towards this option.

It is very well possible Circle will play a big role in the distribution of digital red envelopes over the coming years. Unlike most similar services, Circle can be integrated into any social network. The future of social messaging and payments seems to be entwined. In a way, mobile peer-to-peer money transfers provide financial freedom to people all over the world. Then again, more traditional solutions can charge rather high fees.

The future for mobile peer-to-peer payments is looking bright right now. This is excellent news for Bitcoin adoption, as it allows for much cheaper global transfers. One thing that could hinder the growth of such services is how regulators want to define the issuance and usage of e-money. Bitcoin is being scrutinized by the PBOC right now, but in a positive manner. It is not unlikely we will see Bitcoin-based P2P payment services pop up in China over the next few years.

Header image courtesy of Shutterstock


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