Bank of America is known to hold the most blockchain-related patents in the world, and its latest application just hit the public domain. Inside the new patent is a rather interesting diagram that hints that Bank of America could be planning on using Ripple’s technology. The patent application also drops hints that Standard Chartered – another major financial institution – could be playing a major role in its real-time net settlement system. This could be huge news for the XRP army, but it’s still a little early to get excited about the patent application.
— Dillon (@Dillon) July 20, 2019
Banking on DLT
Back in March, Cathy Bessant – Bank of America CTO – said that blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) could be useless in the future as it has no use cases. Then, a matter of months later, Bank of America is using DLT to power its brand-new real-time net settlement system. Currently, companies charge a huge markup on cross-border transactions, but using DLT allows these firms to cut down transaction times and costs. If Bank of America does indeed use Ripple’s tech, then we could see one of the biggest names in banking join the Ripple network.
Subject to Changes
After listing all of the benefits of this new system, Bank of America goes on to add in a little clause that is everything XRP fans don’t want to hear. The patent application goes on to state:
While certain exemplary embodiments have been described and shown in the accompanying drawings, it is to be understood that such embodiments are merely illustrative of and not restrictive on the broad invention. Those skilled in the art will appreciate that various adaptations, modifications, and combinations of the just described embodiments can be configured without departing from the scope and spirit of the invention. Therefore, it is to be understood that, within the scope of the appended claims, the invention may be practiced other than as specifically described herein.
This essentially gives Bank of America an easy out should it wish to never use Ripple’s technology and create its own – something that we’re likely to see.
Cutting Down Expenses
Customers of Bank of America are still being charged an absolute fortune to transfer their funds overseas. Cross-border transactions are currently costing customer 6,000 times more than transacting in Bitcoin, and it’s this terrifying stat that Bank of America is looking to kill with its new real-time net settlement system. If Bank of America can develop and implement its new system, that cost could be slashed significantly, allowing the bank to pass savings on to customers.
Ripple has signed up a number of big-name clients in the past few months, including SABB. If Ripple can convince Bank of America to keep on planning to use their tech – as well as using it when the system goes live – then Ripple will be able to boast having one of the world’s largest banks as a client. This would do wonders for the Ripple network, and more banks would sign up instantly. However, Bank of America will likely trigger the clause in its application and develop its own DLT system.