After the encrypted messaging app Telegram previously gave up on its token, it now supports crypto payments. According to Protocol, the addition could make crypto payments on messaging platforms more mainstream.
The TON Foundation, which manages the ton coin token, has enabled fee-free payments, sending crypto to other users using ton coin (TON) in the app. It also has added the ability to buy bitcoin within the app.
Telegram’s CEO Pavel Durov has endorsed a separate spin-off token Toncoin, independent from Telegram. That is the coin that is now enabled for payments on Telegram, the report said.
In 2020, Telegram shut down its own cryptocurrency operation after facing pressure from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The project, originally known as the Telegram Open Network (TON), was developed by Telegram CEO Pavel Durov and his brother Nikolai in 2018. A year later, the SEC ordered Telegram to halt its sales of Gram, the token linked to the TON blockchain, after saying it failed to register the $1.7 billion in sales collected as part of its pre-Initial Coin Offering (ICO).
Even after Telegram abandoned the TON project, a group of developers kept it afloat, renaming it The Open Network and rebranding Gram as Toncoin. Durov expressed his support of the project last December, noting, “I’m proud that the technology we created is alive and evolving… TON is still years ahead of everything else in the blockchain realm.” Earlier this month, the TON Foundation managed to raise $1 billion in donations.