Coinbase, Circle unveil new upgrades to USDC stablecoin

Circle and Coinbase have announced an upgraded version of the USDC stablecoin — which is managed by the Centre Consortium — including the addition of so-called gasless sends.

The "USDC 2.0" update will allow services that offer USDC support to pay transaction fees — known as gas on the Ethereum network — for their users, according to a blog post published Thursday morning. 

"This allows developers to either provide that service themselves, or allows a third party service to pay the related fees," the blog post stated. "In other words, developers can either pay the fees on behalf of the customer or present and deduct the fees in USDC."

The new release also includes security-focused updates "USDC 2.0 introduces a new set of on-chain multiple-signature contracts, including new consensus mechanisms, which will help to improve the resiliency and growth of Centre and shift off-line human processes into on-chain multiple signature processes," the post stated.

The release comes nearly two months after USDC's overall supply exceeded the $1 billion mark. According to data from CoinGecko, that figure is roughly $1.4 billion as of press time.

Circle and Coinbase, which serve as issuers of USDC as well as backers of the consortium, invited ecosystem participants to begin integrating the upgraded version of USDC. 

"The new USDC smart contract and protocol improvements are available today, August 27th, and any wallet developer can begin to take advantage of gasless sends. Centre members Circle and Coinbase both intend to introduce support for these protocol improvements in their respective products and services, and any 3rd party developer can integrate and support this today using the public USDC smart contract," the firms said in the post.