Visa is researching ways to introduce recurring, automatic payments for self-custodial Ethereum wallets, according to a recent technical paper by the global credit card giant.

See related article: MetaMask partners with PayPal for Ethereum purchases through wallet

Fast facts

  • Ethereum auto payments through Visa cards would be possible through an Ethereum proposal called “Account Abstraction,” (AA) which would make user accounts on the blockchain function more like smart contracts, adding programmable features to wallets.
  • This would allow Ethereum users to set up recurring, automatic payments directly from their self-custodial wallets, eliminating other intermediaries from the equation.
  • Visa proposed the use of AA as a new type of account contract that can “delegate the ability to initiate a payment by a user account to a pre-approved auto payment smart contract, mimicking the process you use today to set up a recurring card payment.”
  • EIP-86, the AA, was proposed by Ethereum cofounder Vitalik Buterin in 2017, who first posted about the concept of AA in 2015. The proposal’s current status is “stagnant” but Visa’s paper may reignite interest.
  • Visa has been venturing into blockchain, reflected in the company’s October trademark filings that hinted at plans of launching a crypto wallet.

See related article: Ethereum supply would have grown by 350,000 tokens under PoW