Solana Pay 101

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What is Solana Pay?

Solana Pay is an open-source protocol built on the Solana blockchain — anyone can build on or transact with Solana Pay. Imagine sending money at the speed and cost of sending data across the Internet. This is the promise of Solana Pay.

How long does it take for a Solana Pay transaction to clear?

Unlike credit cards and wire transfers that can take days to settle, using Solana Pay is like transacting with digital cash — payments move in seconds with near-zero fees.

Why are Solana Pay fees so low?

Existing payments networks are built on legacy systems over half a century old and crowded with intermediaries. Large merchants are able to negotiate lower transaction fees with networks like Visa, whereas your neighborhood small businesses suffer from higher fees. With Solana Pay, everyone pays the same fraction-of-a-penny fee.

Aside from transferring tokens, what else can a Solana Pay transaction do?

When a customer buys something, it’s a vote of support. Typically, only large merchants have the resources to design sophisticated loyalty programs. With Solana Pay, the opportunities to reward customers are limitless — embed loyalty, offers, and payment all in one transaction. Any merchant can create and operate a world class loyalty program.

Why are stablecoins important to Solana Pay?

Using Solana Pay doesn’t mean you must exchange volatile cryptocurrencies — any token that runs on the Solana blockchain works. For example, USDC is a fully-collateralized stablecoin, meaning that for every $1 of USDC there’s $1 US dollar sitting in a bank account, so the value of USDC is always the same.

How does Solana Pay differ from paying with a centralized entity like Venmo or Cash App?

With Solana Pay – a peer-to-peer payments network that is censorship-resistant and accessible to all – no one else controls your assets. You don’t need an ID or bank account to create a wallet. And since there are no intermediaries holding assets on your behalf, your funds are not at risk of being frozen or lost due to corruption or bad actors. You completely control your finances.

How does using Solana Pay impact the environment?

The Solana blockchain is carbon neutral and fast — each transaction uses the same energy as about 3 Google searches. No more physical receipts, checks, and plastic cards. No more hefty fees or delays, whether sending money to loved ones in other countries or receiving your payout as a gig worker.

How does Solana Pay work?

As a user, all you need to do is open your wallet and scan a QR code or hold your phone close to an NFC tag. If you’re familiar with Apple Pay, NFC is the technology that powers tap-to-pay. Once you scan or tap, a pop-up window in your wallet will show you the transaction amount and recipient wallet address.