Online merchants can now accept bitcoin and Tether (USDt) issued on Bitcoin sidechain Liquid.

Payments application Bitfinex Pay added support for Liquid this week; developed by Bitcoin exchange Bitfinex, the app allows online merchants to accept a selection of cryptocurrencies.

While multiple payment services have integrated Bitcoin or are even dedicated to Bitcoin only, Bitfinex Pay is the first full-serve application to support payments via Liquid. The sidechain was developed by Bitcoin infrastructure firm Blockstream and is maintained by a federation of over 60 members, most of which are companies in the cryptocurrency or finance sector.

The Liquid Network was originally designed to primarily benefit traders, providing consistent one-minute block times and two-minute transaction finality while reducing the likeliness of network congestion; a phenomenon many traders struggle with during peak volatility. Since its launch in 2018, however, Liquid has come to be used for additional purposes, such as as an additional platform to transact USDt as well for the issuance of security tokens and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

Bitfinex Pay's Liquid integration includes Liquid Bitcoin (L-BTC) and Liquid Tether.

“Bitfinex Pay empowers merchants around the world that may not have access to traditional payment systems,” Blockstream CSO Samson Mow commented on the new addition to the app. “The combination of the Liquid Network’s confidential transactions and fast settlement, with Bitfinex Pay’s seamless checkout experience, is a big game changer.”

Liquid is one of the most prominent sidechains of Bitcoin, with just under 3,300 bitcoin locked up on the network at the time of writing.

Earlier this week, Liquid made waves in the space when a hard fork resulted in a network outage lasting around a day. The Liquid Oversight Board pointed to an issue with "consensus parameters resulting in functionaries failing to sign blocks," but stressed that user funds remained safe and unaffected throughout the outage.

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