China’s Central Bank-Owned ‘Digital Yuan’ App Now Allows Gifting of Cash

  • The Digital Yuan (e-CNY) is China’s CBDC. It looks to drive adoption by adding new features to its smartphone app.
  • The CBDC has already seen considerable usage in China. It is also integrated with Tencent’s QQ and WeChat messenger apps.

To drive the adoption of their Digital Yuan smartphone app, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) has introduced a new gifting feature. This allows users to send cash gifts to one another through ‘red envelopes.’ 

It is customary in China for friends and family to gift each other red envelopes containing money for significant events. These include birthdays, anniversaries, and graduations. Similarly, it is common to receive a red envelope for special celebrations like the Lunar New Year. 

This latest update allows Digital Yuan users to gift digital red envelopes to others via popular messenger services such as Tencent’s QQ and WeChat. The envelopes can even be sent via entities owned by Alibaba – a major Chinese commerce company. 

Users must download the Digital Yuan app to redeem the digital red envelope. Current users are also now incentivized to invite more users onto the platform. They will be rewarded with customizable avatars to use across the app itself. The more users invited, the more unique the avatar can be. Users who invite three or more people will receive ‘unique’ and ‘decorative’ customization options. 

Coming up almost a full year since its initial release in January, the app has undergone multiple improvements to its UI and functionality. These upgrades were implemented to encourage widespread adoption across the country.

On the Flipside

  • Although China has tried to ban mining and other crypto activity, it is also one of the leading countries regarding widespread crypto adoption. As China seemingly leads the way in CBDC adoption, it will also be interesting to see how this affects the global market.

Why You Should Care

Global adoption of CBDCs is an important aspect for investors to consider. As 2023 is touted as the year of regulation by analysts, global action to regulate crypto and provide state-backed currencies will also likely affect the market.