Captain’s Log 010 – xRapid Remittance

Warp Field of Focus: Primary

When I was a kid I paid my parents back with napkins with a IOU written on it. Usually for a dollar or some other large amount, at least a lot of money for an eight year old. Once I figured out that the paper in my birthday cards should be saved for spending on toys, I would keep a bit of that to bribe my sister with. Probably to keep quiet about something I did that I knew was wrong, like eating a snack before dinner.

I remember in my high school years writing checks. My parents insisted I do the books the old fashioned way. Once I had to send a money order for an e-bay purchase. My ebay deal turned out to be $5 more expensive because I had to pay somebody to take my money to the seller. What a crock! Why wasn’t my own check good enough? I want to explore my own experience and talk about what’s possible.

After graduating I had my first credit card in college only to find out it was useless for sending money anywhere; back to checks and cash. Actually, just checks because sending cold hard cash in the mail “isn’t safe”. I remember dreading and avoiding the act of sending money anywhere in any official capacity. The worst was purchasing a house. A certified check from a bank was required! From a bank! Can’t even go with a money order; at least my situation. Banks have become our go to now for sending money. Have you heard of “Bill Pay”? That’s how I have to send money to people if I want to avoid have to pay a cut to the Western Unions of the world. Also sending cash is slow like dial up slow. My own experience sending money has always been such a hassle. Until now.

The world is evolving to a point where we can transmit our money like an email. In fact that’s already here! No banks required. Cryptocurrencies are on the rise and all of them can do this, however, only one does it well. The digital asset XRP can act as a value transmission system to send money between two points almost instantaneously. No more checking your online banking system to see if that Pending Charge ever clears day after day. Heck! You don’t even have to wait around for Bitcoin or Ethereum to clear. In the crypto-verse it is a known fact that XRP is cleared on its ledger faster than any other cryptocurrency at 1,500 transactions per second. [1] The first time I bought bitcoin, I remember waiting for over an hour for it to clear. The first time I bought XRP the clear time was 3 seconds. Now that is warspeed for payments!

A lot of people have to send money places everyday. Many people send money back home to their folks, such as myself. I like to do that to help out and give back. The process just takes forever! I’ve wondered how many out there have actually tried to get their Mom to take remittance in XRP? Is it more expensive than Western Union? Cheaper? I want to know!

Let’s explore some real life numbers going through the process:

  1. Take your own money; any government currency
  2. Convert to tranmistable medium
  3. Send
  4. Receive
  5. Convert to another or same government currency.

Let’s go over a few assumptions.

  1. In both cases I want to send money for the cheapest method possible.
  2. You may wish to send to a different country or not so there are two scenarios; same country and different country.
  3. I’ll use sending $1000 as a round number. Speed and cost are the metrics to measure.
  4. For sending XRP, there’s the whole 20 XRP wallet minimum thing. I want to ignore that for the sake of argument since it’s a one time deal.

Scenario 1, Example #1: Western Union – Same country; $1000

I went to their Send Money Online app to check and found that to send $1000 to someone would cost $10. That’s if everyone went to a store; paid in person and picked up in person. A little bit of a hassle

Result: Fee $10 and Available “In minutes” according to their website.

Scenario 1, Example #2: XRP – Same country; $1000

I guess you’d have to purchase some XRP to do this. There are many ways to do this. I will suggest using Coinbase and Shapeshift, however, I do not claim it is the cheapest.

I recommend reading up on Ripples on how to here, or you can see my own on my YouTube channel. I explain how to do the Coinbase/Shapeshift method.

At time of writing $1000 gets me 1.88339079 ETH on Coinbase which equates to 1838.84929114 XRP from Shapeshift. In reality, when I send this somewhere, the money will have to be sold back for local currency, so I should account for that and double it for purchase. Meaning send more money so when bought and and sold again there’s padding.

New Numbers. $1031 gets 1.93730062 ETH on Coinbase which equates to 1892.42512133 XRP from Shapeshift. Buying in that is a $15.14 fee meaning I’m actually getting $1015.86 worth of XRP to send. Selling back out I would have to supply that fee a second time so whomever i am sending to gets $1000.

Send that ethereum to shapeshift, XRP comes out to my wallet. Shoot that over to my payee and they shapeshift it back to ethereum to their Coinbase account.

Something to note here. Using Coinbase is slow. Their site claims it can take 14 business days to process a withdrawal to a bank account. I have performed withdrawals before and had it happen in a few days. I don’t really consider this a problem if you’re not in a rush to have cash in hand. I mean, the money is in your Coinbase account in literal seconds.

Result: About $30 to send; Available as fast as you can click buttons and transaction time of ethereum chain. Still just minutes.

Scenario 2, Example #1: Western Union – Send to a different country; $1000

I picked the philippines randomly for this exercise. I did not have a country preference.

Guess what? The online calculator produces the same result. $10

Scenario 1, Example #2: XRP – Send to a different country; $1000

Also the same. When you withdraw USD to a bank account in Euros, the banks deal with conversion.

Results: Overall, you can get your payment to somebody just as fast. Using the Coinbase to Shapeshift method results in waiting around for Coinbase to handle your transactions. There has to be a better way? Thirty dollars vs ten dollars is almost no contest.

What could that better way be? One obvious way to cut some cost would be to use GDAX. Coinbase is nice but they charge you for that over the top user friendly interface (left). GDAX is a market traders interface (right). Soon GDAX will become Coinbase Pro in case when you’re reading this the name has already changed.

Here’s how much you might save with GDAX over Coinbase. Fees are 0.3% if you’re using it. On Coinbase if you’re buying from a bank account you’ll pay 1.5%. Talk about a markup! That’s both ways too.

Numbers: 0.3% of $1000 is $3. To go with this instead you would need $3 to buy $1000 worth of ethereum. Double that and that would give the person you’re sending to another $3 to have $1000 when they sold. Pad it by a dollar for some margin.

Results: Now we’re talking $7 to send $1000! Slightly cheaper than Western Union.

Can we do better? Let’s try a different exchange.

On Bitstamp a person can buy XRP directly for USD. Hey CoinTrek? Why didn’t you tell us this to begin with? I think Coinbase is a huge first entry point for a lot of crypto users, so I thougth why not give an easy to use solution first.

Let’s say a person is not in a rush and will do a bank transfer to fund an account. Bitstamp is slightly cheaper than GDAX. Trades are 0.25% as opposed to 0.3%. That means 0.25% of $1000 is $2.5 and you’d need double to trade back out to USD, so to send $1000 we’re talking $6 if you pad it.

Now you can get the total down to $6. That’s not bad! And, you can do it from your home office, however. There’s still the question of how to send the XRP from person to person. I have a couple suggestions; a wallet and one novel method.

XRP Wallets

Toast Wallet is a nice IOs capable wallet that works from the comfort of your phone. I like it because the wallet works pretty much everywhere, but for one reason especially. I’m a security nut and I like to keep my crypto in a cold wallet. A Ledger Nano S to be exact. A fellow by the name of @WietseWind on Twitter has created a utility to connect the Toast wallet up to your Ledger Nano S. You can get the app here on his GitHub Page. An XRP wallet has the unique capability to be shared through the use of a unique Family Seed. The app creates one from your Ledger information and you can use it to sync up the toast wallet with your hardware wallet. Now that is cool!

If you thought that was neat, well, there’s more. The novel way to send XRP is with Twitter! @WietseWind has also created the XRP Tip Bot; All you need is a twitter account and you’re good to go. Tweet somebody with the following:

+X @xrptipbot, where X is the amount of XRP you want to send.

And, they’ll receive the XRP in their name. One only has to go to the website, log in and claim the XRP.

The XRP Community would not have that capability if it was not for Wietse. I never would have imagined sending money on twitter 10 years ago in college. Back then I was still writing checks! A slave to the banks! If this movement is going to take off then it is up to us in the community to live it and breath it. My ways to send XRP are certainly not the only out there. I would enjoy hearing about it and sharing it with everyone. I also challenge Western Union to match $6. I mean really?! Why not?

I am following the lead of the others and doing my best to contribute because I believe sending money should be as simple as sending a text (guess what Wieste did that one too.. I wonder what that man does all day?) I am writing about XRP and crypto, but I am also working on something tangible that I can produce for the community on my CoinTrek. Stay tuned and I’ll soon be able to share what that is with you!

Until then. Second star to the right! Warp 8.