• Wed. Feb 21st, 2024

Sam Altman’s WorldCoin Crypto Project Begins International Rollout

Sam Altman’s WorldCoin Crypto Project Begins International Rollout

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Sam Altman’s cryptocurrency project, the WorldCoin Foundation, is expanding its services globally even as the company co-founded by the OpenAI chief faces regulatory pushback in the US.

The Berlin and San Francisco-based start-up announced Monday that its technology, including its WorldCoin token — a blockchain-traceable cryptocurrency that requires users to first prove their identity — will be available in 35 cities in 20 countries.

At the center of the effort is an eye-scanning physical “orb” that WorldCoin’s founders say is necessary for a future where distinguishing between humans and robots will become more challenging due to the boom in artificial intelligence technology. Once users prove that they are not robots, they can issue one of the company’s tokens.

But US regulators’ crackdown on digital assets over fears of cryptocurrencies being used as a vehicle for speculation and fraud has hampered the company’s goals. For this reason, WorldCoin tokens will not initially be available in the US.

“When we started thinking about this, we didn’t think it would end up being ‘the world minus the US currency,’ and here we are,” Altman told the Financial Times. “I would say 95 percent of the world’s population is not in the US. America does not make or break a plan like this.

WorldCoin’s rollout comes amid AI making big strides — as did the launch of OpenAI’s ChatGPT last year — and coincides with an unprecedented frenzy for digital tokens and the broader crypto sector.

A crisis of confidence engulfed the industry last year, prompting the collapse of bellwethers including FTX and Celsius and leading regulators to issue a blitz of enforcement actions aimed at cracking down on speculative crypto projects.

Despite the regulatory hurdles, investors poured nearly $250 million into WorldCoin, including venture capital groups Andreessen Horowitz and Khosla Ventures, Internet entrepreneur Reid Hoffman, and Sam Bankman-Fried before the collapse of his FTX empire.

Alex Blania, co-founder of WorldCoin, said he was limited in talking about the company’s commercial ambitions because of regulatory scrutiny in the US.

But Tiago Sada, the company’s head of product, said the project “will make money.” “All our products are for profit. There will eventually be a bunch of different wallets and experiences that earn money. ”

“Orb production and initial protocol development . . . ecosystem development and maintenance”.

Altman acknowledged that the eye-scanning technology has an “obvious element,” but he’s confident the company can attract users with the right explanation.

“In crypto, there have been a lot of bad actors, which is a real shame. . . “We need to gain people’s trust, which is why we explain a lot about how the technology works and the road map to decentralize the company,” he said.

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