The popular stock trading app Robinhood announced this week it will soon offer free a bitcoin and ether trading service, plus instant transfers for cryptocurrency purchases worth more than $1,000. Traders who are used to waiting hours or even days on other cryptocurrency trading platforms are dancing in their seats.

"We've come to understand that cryptocurrencies as an asset have exhibited clear and underlying resiliency and have integrated themselves as part of a diversified and balanced portfolio," Robinhood CEO and co-founder Vlad Tenev told CoinDesk. Tenev added Robinhood already has more than 3 million accounts garnering a transaction volume of around $100 billion. This new addition could attract millions more. A study by Cambridge University conducted in early 2017 —published in September —estimated there were up to 11.5 million active cryptocurrency wallets worldwide. By October, Coinbase alone reportedly had 13.3 million users.

Robinhood's new mobile feature will launch in February for users in California, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana and New Hampshire. Plus, app users nationwide can now track market data and news for 16 cryptocurrencies such as litecoin, XRP, zcash, monero, NEO and bitcoin cash. There’s no word yet on when, or if, Robinhood will expand trading options beyond ether and bitcoin. “We’re extremely selective about the cryptos we’re making available on the platform” says Tenev told TechCrunch. “We’re introducing those first because these are the most mature coins that people are trading these days.”

According to TechCrunch, Robinhood is now valued at $1.3 billion. The startup’s investors include cryptocurrency veterans at Andreessen Horowitz, which also backed blockchain projects like Coinbase, Ripple, and BaseCoin. Many blockchain enthusiasts are starting to treat cryptocurrency as more of an investment than a borderless payment method. This week Stripe, the payment processor behind clients like Kickstarter, Target and Glossier, announced it will stop supporting bitcoin payments in April.

Bitcoin price chart
Bitcoin experienced tons of growth over the course of 2017. Screengrab via

Scaling solutions like the Lightning Network could help bitcoin regain those types of use cases in the future. But for now, finance industry incumbents are moving in with products that mirror traditional trading. “Now in Robinhood, for the first time, consumers will be able to invest in and trade stocks, ETFs, options and cryptocurrencies all in one place,” Robinhood co-founder and co-CEO Baiju Bhatt told Forbes. Meanwhile, Reuters reported the trading software provider Trading Technologies International Inc will team up with Coinbase to offer institutional traders both bitcoin futures and bitcoin itself starting in March.