Already connected to Alipay, you can also choose to use it anonymously. What exactly is a digital renminbi?

According to the Financial Associated Press, Alipay has launched a digital RMB module for some users and supports user transfer and collection services. Among them, the transfer method can support “wallet number transfer” or “mobile phone number or email transfer”.

Test users who enter the Alipay whitelist can see the “Digital RMB” module in the “My” column of the Alipay App, which is listed alongside Huabei and bank cards. Click on the “Digital Renminbi” module and follow the instructions to enter your name and other information, you can register an online merchant bank digital renminbi wallet. The wallet can choose either “real name use” or “anonymous use”, but only one Alipay account can be opened. wallet.

Reading this news, you may be a little confused. What exactly is a digital renminbi, will it compete with WeChat Alipay, and what does it have to do with the blockchain? Let us find out today.

What is the digital renminbi?

The digital renminbi is a renminbi digital currency directly issued by the central bank. Like paper money, it is only in electronic form. If you have a wallet, you can go directly to the location designated by the central bank to exchange for digital renminbi without binding any bank card account.

As mentioned in the news above, the wallet of digital renminbi is embedded in Alipay, and it can also be embedded in various bank accounts. In the future, there may also be a dedicated wallet APP for digital renminbi. With the wallet address, you can transfer in and out. Digital RMB.

Of course, we see that most of the digital renminbi tests are directly sent by the government to everyone’s wallet address in the form of benefits. For example, the Shenzhen and Suzhou digital renminbi red envelope benefits were issued some time ago. The balance of the wallet address can be used. Going to spend, it has not yet involved the exchange of digital renminbi at a designated place.

In addition, digital renminbi, like paper money, has two characteristics. One is to transfer money directly when there is no network, as long as both mobile phones have power, the transfer will not be affected when the network is disconnected; second, the function of anonymous payment can be realized.

Is digital renminbi and WeChat Alipay in competition?

In fact, there is no competition. The digital renminbi is directly issued by the central bank. WeChat and Alipay are just payment tools. The money in WeChat Alipay comes from commercial banks, and the money in commercial banks comes from banknotes issued by the central bank.

So the difference is that WeChat and Alipay are channels. The “water” in the management is cash banknotes issued by the central bank. Another type of “water” issued by the central bank is called digital renminbi, but digital renminbi does not directly use the WeChat Alipay channel. Therefore, digital renminbi and WeChat Alipay are not on the same dimension, and there is no competitive relationship.

On the contrary, there will be a lot of cooperation between the two in the future. After all, the digital renminbi needs to be promoted on a large scale and requires assistance from channels such as WeChat and Alipay. Close to 1 billion users of Alipay.

What is the relationship between digital renminbi and blockchain?

Judging from the current situation, the issuance of digital renminbi is centralized and issued by the central bank. However, some blockchain technology principles have been borrowed from the underlying technology, such as digital renminbi small-value anonymous transfers, etc., to facilitate separation from existing bank accounts The binding of the system, but the specific implementation method is not disclosed too much.

At the same time, the central bank proposed that the digital renminbi adopts a “two-tier operating system”, that is, the upper layer is the People’s Bank of China to commercial institutions, and the lower layer is commercial institutions to the general public. The central bank does not presuppose a centralized or decentralized technology route. Regardless of whether commercial institutions use blockchain or centralized technology to provide digital renminbi exchange, the central bank can adapt to related technologies and methods.

What is the value of the digital renminbi?

The digital renminbi is a digital currency issued by the central bank of our country. At present, central banks around the world are actively exploring the issuance of digital currencies. Our digital renminbi research and development is at the forefront of the world, and testing has begun in many pilot cities.

The issuance of digital renminbi is a good supplement to the current financial system. Among the more than 7 billion people in the world, as of 2017, 1.7 billion people still have no access to the financial system and cannot enjoy the financial services provided by traditional banks.

The large-scale use of the central bank’s digital currency will attract people outside the financial system and enjoy the benefits of financial development without the need to deploy high-cost banks and other infrastructure.

Especially in cross-border payments, once the global central bank digital currency achieves a unified standard, it will greatly improve the efficiency of cross-border payments and significantly reduce costs. This is also one of the reasons why Facebook’s Libra white paper was released and immediately aroused the attention of global central banks.

Of course, strengthening macro-control is also an important indicator for the issuance of digital currencies by central banks around the world. After all, the issuance of digital currencies is more transparent than traditional currencies, with fewer intermediate processes, which facilitates the central bank to better control the flow of funds and do a good job in macroeconomic regulation. .

Author/ Translator: Jamie Kim
Bio: Jamie Kim is a technology journalist. Raised in Hong Kong and always vocal at heart. She aims to share her expertise with the readers at Kim is a Bitcoin maximalist who believes with unwavering conviction that Bitcoin is the only cryptocurrency – in fact, currency – worth caring about.