“We believe that cryptocurrencies have the potential to fundamentally reorganize the way money works from the ground up, putting power previously held by financial institutions directly in the hands of the people.”
So says Robinhood, a stock app with apparently millions of customers that allows for commission free trading, so relying on a freemium model to finance itself while also earning interest from cash deposits.
The SEC regulated broker-dealer is now bringing that model to cryptocurrencies starting in February when users will be able to trade bitcoin and ethereum for absolutely free.
Bank transfer deposits, however, are limited to just $1,000, but they are instant. For $6 to $200 a month, such limits can be increased. Allowing you to also borrow from the company sums of $1,000 to $50,000.
They plan to gradually add 16 digital currencies, opening with bitcoin and ethereum to then be followed by Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ripple, Ethereum Classic, Zcash, Monero, Dash, Stellar, Qtum, Bitcoin Gold, OmiseGo, NEO, Lisk, and Dogecoin.
The gradual roll-out will also initially be limited to just five states for residents in California, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, and New Hampshire.
The app itself is generally limited to just US, so Europeans may be out of luck while waiting for Robinhood to potentially get an EU license.
But people have still flocked to it, with some 378,000 waiting to get early access at the time of writing, indicating quite a high level of demand for crypto trading:
“I’m a dabbler [in crypto], definitely, but I wouldn’t say that it’s all that significant,” Vladamir Tenev, co-founder of Robinhood, says before further adding:
“[Cryptocurrency] puts power that’s historically been held by financial institutions in the hands of the people. I think that lines up directly with Robinhood’s mission to democratize the financial system.”
Apparently some 95% of surveyed Robinhood users said they’d invest in cryptos if the app supported it, showing the phenomena has now very much gone mainstream.