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Ripple is collaborating with 61 Japanese banks to create a smartphone application called MoneyTap, which will allow clients to settle money transfers within seconds. The Japan Bank Consortium has opted for Ripple’s blockchain technology to give customers the opportunity to manage bank-to-bank cash transfers around the clock in real time.

Currently, Japan’s cash transfers are generally settled by banks on business days from 8:30 to 15:30. With the MoneyTap application, users will be able to make “faster, safer and more efficient” money transfers at any time, including on weekends.

The pilot will start with three consortium member banks: SBI Net Sumishin Bank, Suruga Bank, and Resona Bank. The lenders are expected to adopt the app in the autumn of this year. The rest of the consortium members will start using it in the next three or four years.

Led by SBI Ripple Asia, the 61 lenders represent a group that manages about 80% of all banking assets in the country. Almost every Japanese citizen will be able to reap the benefits of MoneyTap, which will require basic data, such as a bank account, QR code, and phone number. Compared to the current payment system that charges banking and ATM fees, the Ripple-powered app will be much more affordable.

Takashi Okita, CEO of SBI Ripple Asia, commented on the project:

“We are proud to leverage Ripple’s blockchain technology through our new mobile app, MoneyTap, to improve the payments infrastructure in Japan. Together with the trust, reliability and reach of the bank consortium, we can remove friction from payments and create a faster, safer, and more efficient domestic payments experience for our customers.”

Emi Yoshikawa, who manages Ripple’s joint venture partnerships, revealed that the group would promote its product for use in cross-border payments and interbank settlements.

In mid-February, Western Union's CEO said the company was experimenting with Ripple’s network and token to streamline the processing of money transfers.