Coinbase CEO: Apple’s App Store is Restricting Innovation; Crypto-Compatible Devices Are the Future

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In Brief
  • Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong says Apple's App Store is restricting crypto innovation.

  • Armstrong previously criticized Apple in 2020 for its anti-monopolistic practices.

  • Could crypto-compatible devices be the future for app stores?

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Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong believes Apple and its App Store policies have restricted innovation for crypto-native apps.

It’s no surprise that Apple and its App Store policies have been a major obstacle for innovation over the years.

In a recent episode of Superstream Podcast, Armstrong described Coinbase’s experience in attempting to add some features to its app, but was restricted by Apple, prohibiting further innovation by the company.

“Apple so far has not really played nice with crypto, they have actually banned a bunch of features that we would like to have in the app, but they just won’t allow it – so there’s potential antitrust issues there,” Armstrong stated.

Are crypto-compatible devices the future?

Armstrong also predicts that the future of app stores will come with crypto-compatible devices with built-in hardware characteristics that will ultimately meet the needs of crypto investors.

Instead, Armstrong calls on both Apple and Android to add crypto-features to their operating systems, stating these capabilities would make users more comfortable with the space by having it on their phones.

As to Coinbase’s plans of building a hardware crypto wallet, Armstrong says that the exchange already has a co-branded wallet with Ledger, but doesn’t think most users want to have a separate wallet just for Bitcoin.

Back in 2020, Armstrong criticized Apple for its stifling policies, now stating how the Coinbase app is currently unable to access DeFi services – comparing Apple’s policies to Microsoft’s anti-competitive practices.

Where is Coinbase headed?

Regardless, Coinbase’s app is still one of the most downloaded finance apps on the App Store, with 89 million downloads.

Despite the criticism, Apple’s Coinbase app still provides users with unique features, including the ability to use Apple Pay to buy crypto on Coinbase. Through Apple Wallet, users are also able to connect their Coinbase card.

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Oluwapelumi believes Bitcoin and blockchain technology have the potential to change the world for the better. He is an avid reader and began writing about crypto in 2020.

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