The Digital Currency Monetary Authority (DCMA) is testing Unicoin, a self-custody digital cash solution, in Latin America and Africa. Unicoin enables completely private point-to-point transactions, bypassing traditional banks and financial intermediaries.
The Digital Currency Monetary Authority (DCMA) has announced the launch of a pilot program for a self-custody and completely private point-to-point digital cash called Unicoin in Latin America and Africa. While electronic money and paper money are the two recognized forms of legal money, Unicoin aims to provide a digital cash solution that enables private transactions without involving banks or financial intermediaries.
Unlike traditional cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Unicoin implements true cryptographic digital cash, allowing direct transfers between mobile devices using wireless technologies such as Bluetooth and Near-Field Communications (NFC). This approach ensures that transactions are completely private and not shared on any distributed ledger. Each mobile device becomes a hardware wallet with its own localized ledger, enabling transactions with other devices operating the Unicoin Digital Cash Protocol.
Unicoin offers both a bank wallet for regulated electronic cash and a mobile wallet for private digital cash. Users can connect their mobile wallet to their bank wallet, facilitating transfers between the two similar to depositing and withdrawing cash from a bank account.
Unicoin’s digital cash solution is particularly suited for developing countries with limited smartphone penetration and internet connectivity. It can benefit merchants in rural areas and support financial inclusion initiatives for the unbanked population. For devices with internet access, additional features like foreign exchange rates enable mobile wallets to conduct money transfers in any legal tender.
To get started with Unicoin, users can download and install the mobile wallet and load an initial cash balance by attaching a Unicoin bank wallet, purchasing Unicoin from an approved money services provider, or receiving a transfer from another Unicoin mobile wallet holder. However, the company has recommended to store only a limited balance in the mobile wallet due to the risk of loss or theft. For large digital cash payments, funds can be transferred from the bank wallet to the mobile wallet at the time of the transaction.
Unicoin’s digital cash solution can be integrated into various systems, including ATMs, Point of Sale (POS) devices, and public payment systems like ticketing and payment machines in bus and train stations.
The pilot program for Unicoin is currently underway in Latin America and Africa, with plans for a full product release within the next six months.