Robinhood Markets Inc. is testing new crypto wallet and cryptocurrency transfer features for its app. This long-awaited move will make it easier for customers to send and receive digital currencies like Bitcoin.
Evidence of the company’s work on such features has appeared in a beta version of its iPhone app. The software includes a hidden image portraying a waitlist for users signing up for a crypto wallet feature. The app also has code referring to cryptocurrency transfers.
With crypto wallets, consumers can use virtual currencies without having to convert them to dollars. They also provide a single place for customers to store their virtual currencies, protected by a private key.
Robinhood shares jumped as much as 2.1% to $41.54 in late trading after testing was reported, before paring the gains. The stock has climbed 7.1% since an initial public offering in July.
While it’s already possible for Robinhood customers to buy and sell popular cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Dogecoin, this would be the first time they can manage all of their crypto holdings through a wallet in the app. Other companies, including Coinbase Global Inc. and Gemini Trust Co., already offer their own crypto wallets.
Robinhood Chief Executive Officer Vlad Tenev has said that adding crypto wallets is a priority for the company’s developers.
He didn’t disclose when such a launch would occur, but the support and testing in its app suggests a debut could be getting closer. Robinhood customers also will have the ability to set up two-factor authentication to use the feature. Software developer Steve Moser discovered the planned offerings.
Virtual currency trading fueled Robinhood’s growth in the most recently reported quarter, making up about 41% of its net revenue during the period. Of the approximately $233 million in revenue it brought in from cryptocurrency trades, about 62% came from Dogecoin transactions alone, underscoring the critical role digital currency trading has played for the newly public company.
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