It is now possible for Telegram users to transact with each other using Tether’s USDT. In a Wednesday announcement, the messaging platform informed its customers that it had added support for USDT-TRON, popularly known as TRC20, to the app’s wallet feature.
USDT is the biggest stablecoin by market cap and ranks third among all cryptocurrencies, only behind Bitcoin and Ethereum. As a stablecoin, USDT is backed by United States Dollar (USD), which is considered a stable asset.
Despite USDT running on several blockchains, Telegram said it would only support the stablecoin on Tron-TRC20.
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Tron Network aims to be the foundation of decentralized internet by providing fast transactions at a low cost. The network’s native token, TRX, is the fifteenth largest crypto by market cap. Data on CoinGecko shows TRX trading at $0.062, down 7% in the past day.
Telegram’s announcement also stated that its customers will be able to purchase, swap and conduct P2P trades using USDT-TRC20 at zero transaction fees.
Telegram’s Crypto Journey
The messaging app started supporting crypto in 2018 after launching TON (Telegram Open Network). However, Telegram abandoned the project in 2020 after the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) alleged that the project’s initial coin offering was illegitimate.
Despite Telegram stopping its involvement in TON, the TON Foundation kept the project afloat. So even today, Telegram users can still send, purchase and sell Toncoin (TON) on the app.
Furthermore, Telegram allows users to acquire Bitcoin via the app and transfer the asset to other users or BTC wallets. However, the largest crypto by market cap cannot be cashed out. Instead, users can exchange it for TON, the twenty-third largest crypto by market cap, according to data from CoinGecko.
TON’s market valuation is $3.4 billion. The token has dropped by 3.5% in the last 24 hours to $2.34.
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Telegram chose USDT probably because it is the most traded asset. The stablecoin posted a trading volume worth $45 billion in the past day alone. It is largely used to convert Bitcoin and other coins into euros, yen, or dollars on any exchange.