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Fast Pace of Cryptocurrency Adoption in Latin America May be due to Dramatic Rise in Smartphone Users

Bitso, one of Latin America’s largest digital asset exchanges, has reportedly reached 1 million users before its planned launch in Brazil.

Santiago Alvarado, director of international payments at Bitso, recently talked about how cryptocurrencies might help with settling cross-border transactions in Latin America. Alvarado, whose comments came during a Unitize panel (held on July 8, 2020), was joined by Craig DeWitt, the director of product at American Fintech firm Ripple, and Reed Cataldo from the Prysm Group.

Alvarado confirmed, during the discussion, that Bitso has surpassed 1 million users. Bitso has been offering crypto-related services in Mexico and Argentina. The company is now preparing to enter the Brazilian markets.

Launched in 2014, Bitso is notably the first digital currency exchange established in Mexico. It’s also the largest cryptocurrency trading platform in the $1 trillion+ economy. Bitso is also reportedly the biggest crypto-asset exchange in Argentina after introducing services in February 2020.

Alvarado said that Bitso has been able to attract a large number of crypto traders in Argentina in a very short period of time. This may be attributed to the rising demand for affordable or more convenient methods for making cross-border payments and remittances.

Alvarado noted that Argentina has a very large and active crypto community. The country also has many freelancer workers, who might be accepting payments in cryptocurrencies – which have become a popular alternative to fiat money in countries with high levels of inflation or too many restrictions on using the traditional financial system.

Alvarado also mentioned that the fast pace of digital currency adoption in Latin America may be due to the dramatic rise in the use of smartphones and the development of distribution infrastructure.

He revealed that around 50% to 60% of the people living in Latin America now have a bank account and around 80% ar...

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