In all the excitement of the latest cryptocurrency bull run—Tesla buying Bitcoin, Ethereum hitting all-time highs, Snoop Doge—it’s easy to overlook what makes the technology underpinning all this newfound loot so exciting. Mostly people just want to talk about the big price movements. And space shuttle cartoons.
(Not that I’m against price talk.Wheee!)
But real innovators are out there tackling hard problems using blockchain tech, even if their efforts are attracting less attention. One of those innovators is Celo, a four-year-old project that’s building a phone-based payments system primarily for “unbanked” people, those who don’t have easy access to the global financial system. Unlike many of the fly-by-night “coin offerings” that proliferated during the great ICO bubble of 2017, Celo has forged on and made inroads into a stubbornly knotty quandary: Cross-border remittances.
Even in normal times, sending money abroad poses a challenge. Non-profit groups often resort to mailing prepaid cards or…