Gift cards, popular in many western countries, allow users without a bank account, credit card, or ID instant access to a wide range of products and services both on and offline. Purchase with these cards allow users to spend without their purchases showing on any statements linked to any bank or credit accounts.
Gift cards can be purchased and used by anyone, from privacy conscious consumers to children not old enough to apply for a credit card on their own, or migrant workers who may not be eligible for a bank account or credit card.
Enter the world of cryptocurrency, enabling the all-inclusive, borderless, and permissionless way to both make and receive payments. As the most well-known cryptocurrency, Bitcoin is still not as easy to purchase as milk, bread, or common types of gift cards. First time Bitcoin buyers must open an account at an exchange, upload multiple ID documents, link an existing payment method, then wait a few weeks for any Bitcoin purchases to be available in their account. Once someone has Bitcoin in a wallet they fully control, all the advantages of Bitcoin are realized. The fiat-to-crypto on-ramp process is the most difficult and time consuming part of obtaining and using Bitcoin.
Considering all the advantages that both traditional gift cards and Bitcoin have to offer, there is a significant overlap of traditional gift card users and users of cryptocurrency.
One new startup working to make it easier to acquire bitcoin is KaiUSB. Their product KUSB is a type of hardware-software USB wallet which includes on their proprietary USB stick a set amount of bitcoin or Ether determined at the time of purchase. The product is currently only available for purchase online, however they aim to have KUSB available at various physical and online retailers by the end of 2018.
An extra bonus with this type of hardware gift card: you can keep using it indefinitely as a USB thumb drive or wallet, long after the balance has been spent.
For more information, visit kaiusb.com