It’s weirdly instructive to watch videos of people paying with Zcash at places like Chipotle, Barnes & Noble, GameStop or Dunkin Donuts. These videos are a rare look into the harmony of combining a private blockchain with existing payment rails.
So what exactly is happening in these videos? When Zcash and Flexa are used together, ZEC coins encrypted with zk snarks are sent to an app that uses a network to collateralize, exchange, and deliver instant payment to a merchant in the merchants preferred currency. Data that can be exploited is hidden, onlookers know nothing, and even the merchant is in the dark about a users identity, balance, or transaction history.
One more thing you might like. You don’t have to ask a Dunkin Donuts cashier if you can pay with Zcash or BTC or ETH. You just create a Flexa code on your app which can be scanned like a gift card. The merchant doesn’t have to know you’re using any cryptocurrency at all, unless you want them to know.
So you’ve watched the videos. You’re excited and want to start paying with Zcash at mainstream retailers. How to do it today?
- Download a Zcash mobile wallet. Keep the private key or seed phrase safe and secure.
- Acquire some ZEC coin. Earn it, buy it on an exchange, or visit a crypto ATM. Put your newly acquired ZEC into your wallet and shield the funds.
- Let the funds relax for some time to avoid linkage.
- Download SPEDN app or any Flexa enabled app.
- On the SPEDN app, create an account using an email address. Then click ‘Add Funds’, select Zcash, and send ZEC to the deposit address. The SPEDN app does not allow withdrawals, so only send it the amount you wish to spend.
- Walk into the store. Order your coffee, donuts, video game, or whatever you want. When you’re ready to pay, sometimes it helps to tell the cashier you have an e-payment or gift card.
- Now look down at your phone. Open the SPEDN app, click spend, select the merchant, and the app goes to work for about 2–3 seconds creating an ephemeral flexcode/barcode specific to your account. Hold the barcode in front of the gift card scanner. After scanning, the scanner will beep and show green to let you know it was accepted.
- That’s it! Grab your burrito, coffee, book, or video game, and try not to smile too big.