The cryptocurrency business is thriving, but there are a lot of things happening, including Google introducing a cloud-based blockchain node service for Ethereum, Twitter allowing users to trade NFTs through tweets, Norway stepping into the metaverse with the Decentraland Tax office, and much more!
In this issue:
- Google introduces a cloud-based blockchain node service for Ethereum.
- Binance’s CEO confirms participating as an equity investor in Musk’s Twitter takeover.
- Twitter will allow users to trade NFTs through tweets.
- Norway steps into Metaverse with Decentraland Tax office.
- The Central Bank of Turkey plans to launch a CBDC in 2023.
- Dogecoin leads the charge as meme coins soar after Musk’s Twitter takeover.
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Google introduces a cloud-based blockchain node service for Ethereum
Tech giant Google said it will be launching a cloud-based node engine for Ethereum projects. The company said its Google Cloud Blockchain Node Engine will be a “fully managed node-hosting service that can minimize the need for node operations,” meaning that Google will be responsible for monitoring node activity and restarting them during outages.
A node is a type of blockchain that runs a blockchain’s software to validate and store the history of transactions on a blockchain’s network. At the time of launch, Google will be supporting only Ethereum nodes.
Google’s announcement signifies the growing attention that technology giants are giving to the blockchain, crypto, and Web3 projects. “Blockchain is changing the way the world stores and moves its information,” Google said in its announcement. Earlier this month, Google formed a partnership with crypto exchange Coinbase to provide crypto payments for its cloud services, and in September, Google Cloud and BNB Chain announced a partnership to support the growth of early-stage Web3 startups. In addition, Google announced in January that it was building a digital assets team for Google Cloud, showing its commitment to building Web3 projects.
Binance’s CEO confirms participating as an equity investor in Musk’s Twitter takeover
Binance confirmed that it was an equity investor in billionaire technology entrepreneur Elon Musk’s takeover of microblogging service Twitter (TWTR). “We’re excited to be able to help Elon realize a new vision for Twitter,” Binance founder Changpeng Zhao said in an emailed statement. “We aim to play a role in bringing social media and Web3 together to broaden the use and adoption of crypto and blockchain technology.”
Zhao said in a tweet that Binance had wired some $500 million as part of the deal two days ago. Twitter did not immediately respond to CoinDesk’s request for comment.
In May, Binance was identified in an SEC filing as one of 19 different parties helping finance Musk’s takeover, with Zhao referring to the company’s $500 million commitment as “a small contribution to the cause” in a tweet after news of the takeover first emerged. He added at the time that a priority should be to reduce spam and scams on the platform. “Our initial commitment remains the same and we look forward to exploring opportunities to grow the partnership in the future,” a Binance spokesperson said.
Twitter will allow users to trade NFTs through tweets
Twitter, a social media network, declared cooperation with four marketplaces to enable users to buy, sell, and display NFTs through tweets directly.
The integration, known as NFT Tweet Tiles, places an NFT’s artwork in a separate panel within a tweet and includes a button that directs visitors to a listing on a marketplace. The integration, which is still in testing, presently functions with markets from four distinct partners: Magic Eden, a platform-agnostic NFT marketplace protocol, Rarible, Dapper Labs, developer of the Flow blockchain, and Jump.trade, a sports-focused marketplace. These marketplaces collectively span numerous blockchain networks, including Tezos, Immutable X, Solana, Flow, Polygon, and Ethereum. The platform only presently accepts Ethereum NFTs, it previously enabled NFTs as verified profile images through its Twitter Blue membership service in January.
A spokesperson from Twitter confirmed to Decrypt, a major crypto publishing firm that the new mechanism will support NFTs that are minted or published on one of the partner platforms. The representative from Twitter also added that the new feature is under testing for selected iOS and web users. A blue tick verified account is not a mandate to be eligible to use the feature. Twitter tested NFTs with users willing to display them as profile pictures. However, Twitter supports only Ethereum-minted NFTs for now.
Norway steps into Metaverse with Decentraland Tax office
The Norwegian government is taking steps to embrace Web3 with the establishment of a metaverse tax office.
At the Nokios conference on Wednesday, the Brønnøysund, Norway’s central register, and Skatteetaten, the nation’s tax authority, announced that they’re partnering with consulting firm Ernst and Young (EY) to establish an office in Decentraland. The goal of the initiative, according to Nokios, is to deliver services to younger, tech-native individuals while establishing their Web3 footprint.
Magnus Jones, Nordic blockchain lead at EY, wrote in a LinkedIn post on Tuesday that he hopes the partnership with Norwegian authorities will help spearhead education in the crypto space by teaching users about taxes related to decentralized finance (DeFi) and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
The Brønnøysund is also exploring additional Web3 services, such as decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs), wallets, smart contracts, and more. “Kudos once again to Norwegian authorities who dare to make moves to bring clarity in a complex landscape,” wrote Jones. “Building further on issuing worlds first guidance on how to tax DeFi and also NFTs, and being a front runner in the crypto space in general.”
Beyond the metaverse, Norway has been slowly integrating crypto services at a national level. In June, the government said it would use Ethereum scaling service Arbitrum to release a capitalization tables platform for unlisted companies. In September, Norway, alongside Israel and Sweden, joined forces with the Bank for International Settlements to explore the possibility of introducing a CBDC (central bank digital currency) for cross-border payments.
The Central Bank of Turkey plans to launch a CBDC in 2023
Turkey has embraced central bank digital currencies (CBDC) after several months of deliberating over them. Now, the results are in, and the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey (CBRT) has confirmed that it is eyeing a 2023 launch for the digital iteration of the lira.
The announcement was revealed in Turkey’s Presidential Annual Program for 2023, with the Strategy and Budget Directorate highlighting plans for the CBDC launch.
According to the budget document, financial provision has been made for a “blockchain-based digital central bank money to be implemented.”
The funds will be used by the CBRT, the Ministry of Treasury, and TUBITAK, the country’s scientific and technological agency. Three action points for the CBDC development were highlighted in the document, with the first being the commencement of tests for using the digital lira for payments. The second ambit of the CBDC exploration is the “integration of digital Turkish lira systems with digital identity and FAST systems within the scope of research and development.” Lastly, commercial banks will be brought into the fold in the testing of a wholesale CBDC offering.
Dogecoin leads the charge as meme coins soar after Musk’s Twitter takeover
Dogecoin ($DOGE) out-performed all other blue-chip cryptocurrencies this week after Elon Musk took hold of the reigns of Twitter (TWTR).
Friday’s finalization of Musk’s Twitter purchase was a catalyst for meme coins breakout with dogecoin leading the pack. After the Tesla CEO marched into Twitter headquarters in San Francisco he tweeted that his acquisition of the social media platform was “important to the future of civilization”.
At the top of the crypto market cap rankings, bitcoin made a bullish move despite a downturn in tech stocks. Bitcoin usually moves in correlation with equities such as the S&P 500 and Nasdaq but bitcoin stayed buoyant this week, increasing in value by approx 10% to $21k.
The global cryptocurrency market cap held its ground above the psychological $1T marker for most of the week. The week’s crypto action comes after Rishi Sunak became the new prime minister of the UK.
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