Worldcoin, the visionary crypto project spearheaded by OpenAI’s Sam Altman, has officially launched, propelling the dream of accelerating the global adoption of decentralized financial products one step closer to reality.
Announcing the development earlier on Monday, the San Francisco startup noted in a blog that the WorldCoin project could significantly enhance economic opportunities, safeguard privacy, enable global democratic processes, and potentially lead to AI-funded Universal Basic Income (UBI).
“In the age of AI, the need for proof of personhood is no longer a topic of serious debate; instead, the critical question is whether or not the proof of personhood solutions we have can be privacy-first, decentralized and maximally inclusive,” said Worldcoin co-founder and Tools for Humanity CEO Alex Blania. “Through its unique technology, Worldcoin aims to provide anyone in the world, regardless of background, geography or income, access to the growing digital and global economy in a privacy-preserving and decentralized way.”
Notably, as per the Whitepaper, central to WorldCoin is the “Proof of personhood” concept that refers to establishing an individual is both human and unique. This will be achieved through the privacy-centric digital identity called World ID, along with the native cryptocurrency currency WLD, which can be acquired through simple verification of being a genuine human being. Worldcoin will be accessible through The World App, the first protocol-compatible wallet, which facilitates obtaining World ID and WLD through biometric verification using The Orb, a device that scans users’ irises while ensuring complete privacy.
As per the blog, the launch includes the release of the World ID and plans to scale Orb operations to 35+ cities across 20+ countries worldwide. However, Blania tweeted that Orbs were already available in over ten major cities globally, including Hong Kong, Tokyo, Nairobi, New York and San Francisco, encouraging users to sign up as the project expands its reach.
Altman applauded the team for its remarkable efforts in bringing the project to its current stage, emphasizing the significance of ambitious endeavours in driving progress.
“I am super impressed by the work of the team to get to this point–the project has a level of complexity and ambition I haven’t seen very often. Like any really ambitious project, maybe it works out and maybe it doesn’t, but trying stuff like this is how progress happens,” tweeted Sam.
With about two million users signing up for the beta, Altman further expressed confidence in WorldCoin’s journey towards two billion users, marking a significant technological and societal transformation.
That said, while the project’s success remains uncertain, its ambitious scope and potential impact on the future position WorldCoin as one of the most audacious endeavours in the crypto space. Meanwhile, debates surrounding its potential societal influence continue stimulating discussions within the crypto community and beyond, even as the sector emerges from a brutal crypto winter where giant blockchains like Terra and firms like FTX collapsed.