Move-to-earn app StepN has become the first blockchain gaming app to integrate with Apple Pay, according to a May 22, 2023 announcement shared with nft now.
A product of Web3 development studio Find Satoshi Lab (FSL), StepN was released in December 202 and made a name for itself as the first move-to-earn app featured in the App Store. The app lets users purchase virtual sneakers and accrue rewards for physical activities like walking or running, which are tracked via a user’s synced smartphone. At its height in May 2022, StepN’s number of active monthly users reached over 705,000, according to Dune Analytics. A year later, that number sits at just under 30,000.
Despite this decline, StepN continues to innovate. This new fiat-onramp partnership marks a notable step forward in the convergence of web2 and Web3 tech and is expected to simplify access to StepN products and facilitate further user growth.
Lowering the barrier of Web3 entry
StepN’s Apple Pay integration eliminates the need for users to link a crypto wallet to transact within the app. Instead, users can add their credit or debit card information to their Apple Wallet on their iPhones, reducing transaction complexity. This simplification is aimed at increasing convenience and payment security, as users’ card details are not stored within the app itself.
Co-founder of FSL, Yawn Rong, expressed optimism for the implications of this integration in the press release announcing the integration and expects the partnership to advance Web3 technology’s mainstream accessibility.
“This integration opens us up to a whole new audience, making Web3 more accessible to the masses, and crucially, bridging web2 and Web3 technology in a way that is thus far unseen,” Rong said in the release.
Rong’s fellow co-founder, Jerry Huang, echoed this sentiment, highlighting how Apple Pay integration could enhance the user journey and “ensure that the Web3 space reaches a level of maturity it requires in order to go mainstream.” Huang credits much of StepN’s success, from the release of remarkable products to user onboarding — to the dedication of their community.
The recent collaboration with Apple Pay follows shortly after news of StepN’s New Horizon Initiative, a rewards program for StepN’s most loyal community members. Holders of StepN Genesis Sneakers, the rarest NFT sneakers within the app, were treated to an airdrop of an estimated 80 million $GMT, the official token of the FSL ecosystem, in February this year. The Apple Pay collaboration represents one of several partnerships with high-profile brands in recent months, including a co-branded sneaker launch with Atlético Madrid and a limited edition physical sneaker collection in cooperation with ASICS and Solana Pay in 2022.
This move to integrate Apple Pay into the StepN platform underscores a growing trend of cross-industry partnerships as Web3 brands look for ways to build project sustainability and provide community rewards while gaining a foothold amongst a non-crypto-native consumer base.
Editor’s note: This article was written by an nft now staff member in collaboration with OpenAI’s GPT-4.
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