The South African grocery retailer Pick n Pay announced Tuesday (Nov. 1) that it has completed the first phase of a pilot that allows customers to pay in-store using the Lightning Network bitcoin payment protocol.
As it makes transactions cheaper and faster than dealing directly with the bitcoin blockchain, the Lightning Network is gaining traction in the field of retail crypto payments. For example, Strike has developed a Lightning-based payment solution that has been integrated into the eCommerce platform Shopify.
In the pilot, the retailer tested a payment service technology that enables customers to buy groceries with cryptocurrency at till points with any bitcoin Lightning-enabled wallet.
With these, customers scan a QR code from their app and accept the rand conversion rate on their smartphone at the time of the transaction. Pick n Pay claims that service fee for each transaction costs the customer on average just 70 cents.
The grocer ran the pilot in 10 Western Cape stores…