Fiat-to-Crypto: Stripe Grabs Global Attention as Web3 Companies Including Audius Get New On-Ramp

2 min read

Audius, the largest decentralized music community and discovery platform for developers, artists and their fans, has announced the immediate launch of the ability for Audius users to tip artists and make purchases with their credit card via Stripe’s fiat-to-crypto on-ramp.

Stripe’s new transactions solution is billed as a customizable widget, which can be directly embedded within different DeFi platforms.

The most common way to on-ramp fiat-to-crypto today is to purchase cryptocurrencies through a centralized exchange — including the likes of Coinbase, Binance, Kraken and the recently deceased FTX. To partake in DeFi, one then transfers the cryptocurrency to a third-party wallet.

As a major payments processor for prominent Web2 companies, such as Apple and Walmart, Stripe’s decision to step further into the crypto world during a time when centralized exchanges are under heightened scrutiny can help DeFi become more accessible to mainstream consumers.

“It’s extremely difficult to get end users ‘on chain’— that is, to fund their wallets with the crypto required to interface with Web3 applications,” Jennifer Lee, product manager at Stripe, wrote in a blog post.

Lee added: “Developers have to wrestle with rampant fraud; navigate complex KYC requirements; and somehow still offer a seamless, high-conversion payments experience so that their users can actually use their Web3 applications.”

Stripe says it will handle tasks related to KYC requirements, payments, fraud and compliance.

Companies that already partner with Stripe for fiat-to-crypto on-ramp services include NFT marketplace Magic Eden, social NFT platform Nifty’s, and decentralized exchange Orca.

There are very limited ways to use DeFi services without a centralized mediator. Stripe’s latest fiat-to-crypto onramp will compete with non-custodial exchanges, such as Kado, which recently moved to bring its on- and off-ramp services to Ethereum, Solana, Avalanche, Cosmos and Axelar.

Kado welcomes the new competition.

“It’s great to see more established payment companies coming into the space, which has been part of our thesis all along,” CEO Emery Andrew told Blockworks via e-mail, adding “Payments innovation has always been one of the no brainer use cases for blockchain and cryptocurrency.”

Once part of the old Terra ecosystem, Kado initially launched a Terra UST native on-ramp, allowing transfers from bank accounts directly to wallets in fewer than five minutes.

Great New For Audius

This new technology opens the world of Audius to every music fan, regardless of their level of experience with Web3 payment systems. The feature allows Audius users to purchase $AUDIO, the token that powers the Audius ecosystem, to tip their favorite artists using the same frictionless debit & credit card systems they would use to check out on any traditional Web2 platform. This new feature means crypto transactions on Audius are easier and more efficient than ever before.

“We’re incredibly excited to introduce this next step of monetization for Audius artists,” said Forrest Browning, co-founder of Audius. “Along with Stripe, we are thrilled to be providing the industry with a tool it has long needed – a customizable, efficient, inexpensive onramp allowing fans to support and tip their favorite artists seamlessly.”

The path to onboarding billions of people to Web3 requires simplicity in the way users interact with these products, and Stripe’s onramp is just one of many ways that the Audius community is continuing to innovate on state-of-the-art UI/UX improvements. With Stripe’s fiat-to-crypto onramp, users are no longer required to jump through numerous pre-existing hoops and 3rd party tools just to support the music they love. Going forward, Audius hopes to leverage the simplicity that comes with frictionless credit card payments to help artists monetize their superfans in new & innovative ways.

For now, Stripe’s new products are slated to only be available to US customers, with availability to other countries in the works.

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