The company press release sent to CoinReport links to a blog post by Uphold President and CEO Anthony Watson, who explains that consumers, businesses and charities can now fund their Uphold accounts via bank transfer or by linking a credit or debit card, in addition to Bitcoin. This new functionality, says the press release, is initially available today in 33 European countries, while Uphold plans to roll out these and other capabilities across the United States, China and India in the coming weeks.
The rollout is scheduled to take place in four phases:
Phase 1: Live Wednesday: Members in 33 European countries can fund Uphold accounts via bank transfer; members in 30 European countries can fund accounts with credit or debit cards, in addition to Bitcoin.
Phase 2: November 2015: Members in the U.S. and China (limited beta) can fund Uphold accounts via bank transfer and credit or debit cards in addition to Bitcoin.
Phase 3: December 2015: Uphold will introduce both physical and virtual payment cards with Visa, MasterCard and Discover card (limited beta), allowing Members to pay merchants online or in-store, directly from their Uphold accounts.
Phase 4: January 2016: Members in India (limited beta) can fund Uphold accounts via bank transfer and credit or debit cards in addition to Bitcoin.
The press release said that by integrating with Uphold, developers and businesses can build services, products and applications that deliver instant, secure, free and regulatory compliant value transfer, exchange, storage and conversion via Uphold’s open API, Uphold Connect.
Uphold has, to date, powered over $400 million in USD transactions by tens of thousands of members across 163 countries, in 24 supported currencies and four precious metals. The equivalent to just under 22% of the world’s publicly traded Bitcoin has been transacted on Uphold, making the company one of the world’s largest Bitcoin companies.
Watson said in the press release:
“Our mission is to make it easy and frictionless for anyone, anywhere to move, convert, hold and transact in any form of money or commodity securely, instantly and for free. By connecting the world’s legacy and fragmented financial networks and systems with the world’s leading cloud-money platform we bring to the marketplace instant, transparent, accountable and free financial services for all. We’re simplifying and radically reducing costs for all financial transactions and services — from currency conversions to international money transfers and payroll to bill payment and remittance.”
Images via Uphold’s press kit