CopPay lied about Samsung using its cryptocurrency payment system in stores

CopPay lied about Samsung using its cryptocurrency payment system in stores

A rumor circulated last week that Samsung had entered a partnership with obscure Lithuanian blockchain startup, CopPay, that would make it possible for customers of the electronics giant in three Baltic states to pay for in-store purchases with cryptocurrency.

But now it seems that there was never a collaboration between the two companies in the first place. A Samsung spokesperson has denied the partnership in an exclusive email to Hard Fork. “Our official response is that the rumor is not true,” the Samsung rep told us.

The supposed partnership was announced through a post on CopPay’s Medium blog, which has since been deleted (you can still access an archived version here).

The news was subsequently picked up by numerous cryptocurrency and blockchain outlets, including Cointelegraph and Bitcoin News – though the some of these publications have since quietly removed the post.

It was to be a rather lucrative deal that would see CopPay install cryptocurrency-focused merchant gateways in 31 physical Samsung stores across the Baltic. Among others, the announcement promised support for Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple, Dash, Nem, and Steem.

CopPay even bragged that Samsung had rallied under their inspirational slogan “Turn On Future,” effectively “embracing” cryptocurrencies by using their point-of-sale devices.

But, all of it has turned out to be fake, with no explanation as to why the misleading announcement was made in the first place.

Before publishing this story, we did contact CopPay for an official comment, but they chose not to respond directly to us. Instead, they insisted they were speaking with Samsung – who, at the time, were coincidentally confirming with us that it was purely an unsubstantiated rumor.

Fake partnerships like these have been a common occurrence in the industry for quite some time now. Back in March, cryptocurrency startup carVertical impressed many with its announcement of a freshly-inked deal with German automobile manufacturer BMW.

That, just like CopPay’s announcement, turned out to be, well, bullshit. They were simply using data retrieved from BMW’s CarData interface to test its shared car-data blockchain platform. That data is available to any third-party, no partnership required.

Technology mainstays like Microsoft haven’t been immune to fake partnership announcements, either. Last November, IOTA revealed its new data marketplace platform in a massive announcement that included the software giant as a direct partner. In the immediate aftermath, IOTA’s market cap amazingly grew from $2.95 billion to over $13 billion.

A few weeks later, Microsoft stepped forward to clarify it had no official partnership with IOTA.

Despite the misleading CopPay announcement, it is worth noting that Samsung are not completely ambivalent to to the benefits of blockchains.

In April, Bloomberg reported it was looking to cut shipping costs by 20 percent by incorporating distributed ledger technology into its supply chain. The South Korean electronics titan is also reportedly preparing to mass-produce cryptocurrency mining hardware capable of mining Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

It was also revealed just last month that Samsung SDS, a subsidiary, is developing an open-source, blockchain-based finance platform for managing digital identities, automatic insurance payments and other consumer-level financial services.

Published July 23, 2018 — 16:34 UTC

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