Meanwhile, crypto-currency companies are genuinely trying to revive the hard-hit travel industry by using distributed registration technology.
The short-term accommodation booking platform Airbnb submitted a prospectus for a $1 billion initial public offering, or IPO, to the US Securities and Exchange Commission on 16 November.
Hidden in the more than 350-page document is a half-page discussion of the risks of not being able to adapt to changes in technology. The document contains a list of buzzwords that smart investors may want to make sure are under consideration:
Airbnb can now be booked with Bitcoin and Lightning Network through the Fold application
„Our future success will also depend on our ability to adapt to emerging technologies such as tokenisation, crypto-currency, new authentication technologies such as biometrics, distributed registration and blockchain technologies, artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality and cloud technologies.
The next paragraph goes on to explain that the „ability to integrate new or emerging payment methods“ is a critical component of future success. However, the only methods listed are Alipay, Paytm and WeChat pay.
While these systems are clearly important, especially in providing access to the unbanked, it raises the question of what Airbnb sees as the role of cryptomoney in its future business model, as well as attracting investors.
A blockchain-based application has been launched to facilitate travel in the event of a pandemic
As reported by Cointelegraph a year ago, it used to be possible to use Bitcoin (BTC) to book accommodation on Airbnb by purchasing USD 25 and USD 100 gift cards in the Fold application. However, Airbnb is no longer among the cards on sale on the platform.
Meanwhile, blockchain companies have been actively using the technology to revive a travel industry that has been severely affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
A New York airport tests a blockchain-based coronavirus cleaning application
Applications have been launched to check the health status of travellers, the cleaning of surfaces in a New York airport and blockchain technology has been used in some contact tracing applications to preserve user privacy. Even US passport applications in California can now be paid for at Bitcoin.
It remains to be seen whether Airbnb’s claims about the importance of adopting crypto and blockchain turn out to be more than just lip service.