On September 7, Bitcoin (BTC) was adopted as legal tender in El Salvador. This adoption was an opportunity for crypto companies to offer services to Salvadoran citizens. In this context, Chivo created an official wallet, based on the Lightning Network. As soon as the Lei Bitcoin was implemented, the people of El Salvador were encouraged to download the Chivo wallet, by the President of El Salvador himself. However, it seems that he is no longer the only one who wants to take care of the bitcoins (BTC) of Salvadoran citizens.
Bitcoin Beach Wallet, Chivo’s next competitor?
The Bitcoin Beach wallet was created by the start-up Galoy. It is an open source wallet that remains compatible with the Lightning Network. The startup has recently completed a funding round of $3 million. This funding will allow it to accelerate the deployment of its wallet in regions of the world that are suffering from hyperinflation, or that do not have sufficient financial inclusion. For the time being, according to the information given by Galoy’s website, the Bitcoin Beach wallet is used by more than 6,000 users.
This wallet presents itself as a very direct competitor to Chivo. Unlike the latter, Bitcoin Beach is available in open source code. Two wallet projects that have used this code to launch regional wallets are Bitcoin Jungle in Costa Rica and Bitcoin Lake in Guatemala.
Bitcoin Beach Wallet, a crypto wallet story like no other
In 2020, the Bitcoin Beach was launched by Galoy as a proof-of-concept in a coastal town in El Salvador that is well known to surfing enthusiasts: El Zonte.
This town has for decades been sidelined by the country, and suffers from a glaring lack of financial inclusion. With this in mind, the initiators of Bitcoin Beach wallet wanted to create a sustainable circular economy based on Bitcoin to help the 3,000 inhabitants of this town. The goal was to enable the exchange of goods and services between merchants and citizens outside the traditional economic system.
Galoy’s marketing director, Andrew Begin said he wants to continue the momentum:
“Galoy’s mission is not to be a bank, we want to provide the infrastructure for others to replicate what we saw happen in El Zonte, El Salvador. So we’re going to scale the operations, the team development, to really bring the platform to a wider audience, and to the right places in the world.”
The fact that the wallet’s code is open source is a sort of added security feature. Indeed, anyone can audit the code and point out potential security flaws. If this had been the case for the Chivo wallet, then maybe some users of this wallet would not have potentially lost their bitcoins.