PIX is now the most used payment system in Brazil. It only took two years.
According to FEBRABAN a total of US$2.42 Trillion has already been transacted in the network, passing 26 billion transactions.
For my American friends, PIX is the equivalent of Zelle, but instead of a private consortium of top banks, a mandatory money protocol layer that every bank must offer its customers. It allows the movement of money to be almost free, instant, and available mostly 24/7.
It is the SMTP for money in Brazil, without needing a digital currency — just a simple digital transformation on top of the Brazilian Real itself.
There is a logical argument it could kill the crypto libertarian dream, as it removes enough friction.
A16Z wrote about it. It is worth a read, in case you are unfamiliar with it.
When in Brazil, I use PIX a few times daily, mostly to pay for taxi rides or service providers. That said, I am excited to see B2B applications on it and a pool of developers dedicated to applications built on top of it.
On the surface, it is pretty awesome. Underneath is an argument of “meeting the new boss, the same as the old boss” — since, again, large banks are necessary for this system to work.
It will be interesting if PIX can be a simple feature added with Defi at some point. I doubt we’ll see that anytime soon, mostly due to the illegal activity that could surface on top of it.