Renowned for his remarkable achievements with the ChatGPT launch, Sam Altman, the CEO of OpenAI, is once again grabbing attention. This time, it’s due to his crypto venture. Following a three-year endeavor, facing various digital-asset market fluctuations and substantial financial investments, the iris biometric cryptocurrency project, Worldcoin, has now been officially launched. Altman added,
“Worldcoin is an attempt at global scale alignment, the journey will be challenging and the outcome is uncertain.”
Additionally, on July 23, users were presented with a notification urging them to update the mobile app. This further resulted in the app’s functionality being temporarily blocked. The message displayed read, “It’s time. Join us in the World App. July 24, 2023, 11 am.”
What is Worldcoin?
It is crucial to highlight that Worldcoin focuses on addressing two primary aspects: online identity verification and income inequality.
Worldcoin is a cryptocurrency initiative utilizing iris biometrics, which integrates the World ID system, the Orb iris scanner, and the World App wallet. Despite concerns raised by various experts about privacy and safety, Altman remains hopeful that these worries regarding the company’s iris-scanning AI will lessen with the open-sourcing of the code.
Through the latest update, developers can now access the Worldcoin software development kit [SDK], which was previously in beta mode. This will empower them to create tools and applications using the project’s identity protocol known as the World ID. Simultaneous with the introduction of the Worldcoin Protocol, the Worldcoin Foundation unveiled its World ID system and extended the availability of the World App to more than 80 countries, intending to further expand its reach to encompass 120 countries.
For complete verification, users need to undergo iris scanning through Orb. This is a specialized device that creates a unique identifier from their irises. Importantly, the company assures that Orb does not process or store any related data locally. Individuals who have undergone verification through an orb will receive an initial allocation of 25 WLD tokens. This is along with regular grants in the future. Furthermore, starting today, individuals will have the option to reserve tokens on the World App until they can physically visit an orb for verification.
What are Orbs?
Orbs, a technological creation of Tools for Humanity, were designed and manufactured. The decision to open-source Orbs was driven not only by the aim of transparency but also to facilitate others in producing Orbs that align with the protocol’s support. Tiago Sada, head of product, engineering, and design at Tools for Humanity, revealed,
“Right now we have about 200 Orbs in a few cities. Over the next few months, we’ll ramp up all the way to hopefully 1,500 Orbs around the world by the end of the year.”
At present, Worldcoin Orbs are available in various global cities, including Berlin, Dubai, London, Mexico City, Miami, New York City, San Francisco, Seoul, and Tokyo. Additionally, the token’s launch signifies the project’s completion of its migration to the Optimism network, an Ethereum Layer 2 scaling solution. Further, the availability of Orb will be expanded globally.
Will Worldcoin’s WLD be available on exchanges?
Addressing this query, Sada said,
“We’ll see what other parties choose to do. What we know is that there are certain features like some peer-to-peer concepts, that will be available from day one on the World App, and then everything else will be up to different people.”
Presently, OKX, a cryptocurrency exchange, has launched the Worldcoin [WLD] recharge page, facilitating transactions with support for ERC20 and Optimism. Notably, Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, supported this project through a listing announcement. Due to regulatory uncertainties, WLD will not be accessible in the United States.
Twitter’s former chief takes shots at Worldcoin
As with most new products, backlash is almost inevitable, and Worldcoin was no exception. The launch of Worldcoin garnered comments from Jack Dorsey, the former owner of Twitter. He tweeted,
“Worldcoin is an attempt at global scale alignment…cute”