Google Cloud Accelerates Bitcoin Lightning Goals Through Voltage Collaboration

Voltage, a Bitcoin Lightning Network infrastructure provider, has formed a partnership with Google Cloud, a leading cloud computing and data service valued at $225 billion. The collaboration aims to enable the global rollout of Bitcoin-based services while supporting the growth of Voltage’s operations.

Graham Krizek, CEO of Voltage, explained that the collaboration allows Voltage to leverage Google Cloud’s infrastructure to better serve their customers worldwide. He stated, “We have larger customers that need nodes deployed in specific geographic regions like the U.K. or Asia.” In turn, Google can utilize Voltage as an outsourced team for Bitcoin and Lightning-related services, assisting companies interested in incorporating Bitcoin or Lightning into their offerings.

The announcement gained significant attention on social media, indicating Google’s increasing interest and acceptance of Bitcoin and Lightning. However, the implications of this partnership extend beyond surface-level impact.

Christopher Calicott, Managing Director of venture capital firm Tramwell Partners, highlighted that former Google employees acknowledged the engagement generated through social media, capturing the attention of the company. He noted, “This is the kind of unexpected engagement that definitely gets people’s attention at Google.”

Furthermore, Google’s open-mindedness toward Lightning stands in contrast to its competitor, Apple. Apple recently removed Damus, a Lightning-friendly decentralized social media protocol, from the App Store, demonstrating their reluctance towards Lightning. Calicott suggested that the tech industry as a whole might be warming up to Lightning, stating, “If they’re adjacent to payments, they would ignore Lightning at their peril.”

Operating under Alphabet, its parent company, Google Cloud operates the popular payment platform Google Pay, serving millions of users in over 15 countries. Google Ventures (GV), the investment arm of Google, has displayed a strong interest in blockchain, Web3 companies, and Bitcoin since 2020. GV participated in a $6 million seed round for Voltage in 2021. Calicott regarded Google’s involvement in the crypto space as a significant signal of growing momentum.

While Apple’s removal of the Lightning-friendly app Damus caused disappointment, Lightning continues to gain traction among billion-dollar businesses worldwide. Notably, a major Mexican company has started experimenting with Lightning, and leading crypto exchanges Binance and Coinbase have recently pledged to integrate Lightning.

Nevertheless, it is still an early stage, and Calicott emphasized the importance of observing the growth of Lightning. Krizek, who has been involved in the Bitcoin space since 2012, highlighted the significance of the partnership in exposing organizations to the potential of Bitcoin and Lightning. He mentioned the strong interest and demand they have witnessed, noting that more services will be rolled out in the near future, accompanied by efforts in Bitcoin education.

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