Last year, Jack Dorsey shocked the world when he announced he would leave Twitter - the company he built from the ground up.
While there was no doubt Dorsey would move on to something else, it sure didn't take long. Jack is moving on to crypto.
A few days after Dorsey announced his departure from Twitter, Square - the payment processing company he founded and runs - announced that it had changed its name to "Block."
In a tweet, the company explained it changed its name with the aim of combining all services in its catalog.
Under the Block family will be Cash App - the peer-to-peer payments platform that also supports crypto; tbDEX - a decentralized Bitcoin exchange; and Tidal - the music streaming platform founded by rapper and business mogul Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter (Square bought a significant majority of the streaming service for $297 million back in March 2021).
In an accompanying press release, Square Crypto - the crypto-focused arm of Square - said it would also change its name to "Spiral" and join Block as a subsidiary.
"Block references the neighborhood blocks where we find our sellers, a blockchain, block parties full of music, obstacles to overcome, a section of code, building blocks, and of course, tungsten cubes. We've been working to make this change for over a year, and it only represents a change of our official corporate name; not our purpose, our vision, our structure or how we operate," Square said.
Dorsey added that while the company's name is changing, nothing else will. The focus remains on improving economic access across the world. There will be no organizational or leadership changes to any companies or services under the Block family.
Hitting the Ground Running
Now that Jack is off Twitter, his focus appears to be promoting Bitcoin and blockchain technology for financial and economic development. It was evident he would dive into Square once he left Twitter, and he hasn't disappointed.
Even while he ran Twitter, some of Dorsey's most prominent pro-crypto moves came out of Square. The payment processor was the first major player in the industry to support crypto, paving the way for other companies like PayPal to do the same.
This year alone, Square has made investments in green Bitcoin mining and is currently working on a system that could make the Bitcoin blockchain more attractive for decentralized finance (DeFi).
With Dorsey being fully committed to the company, Square - now Block - has continued to make developments to the Bitcoin network.
This month, Spiral (formerly Square Crypto) showed a demo for its Lightning Development Kit (LDK), which it claims will improve the Bitcoin network's functionality.
In a video showcasing the LDDK's capabilities, Spiral explained that the tool will help developers plug their applications into the Bitcoin network. These apps will run on mobile phones, point-of-sale terminals, and more.
LDK supports several native application program interfaces (APIs). So, it will be easy for developers to customize their wallet apps for their specific users. Dorsey explained in the video that the LDK will make it easy for any developer in the world to build a Bitcoin wallet.
Besides the LDK, Spiral is also working on a Bitcoin Development Kit that will enable cross-platform mobile wallet interactions.
Still Focusing on Bitcoin
One interesting thing to consider is whether Block will work with the Bitcoin blockchain alone. Dorsey has stated in the past that he doesn't especially want to work on any other blockchain - including the highly popular Etheruem network. But, there is only so much work that can be done with Bitcoin.
The Ethereum blockchain remains the top choice for developers, and its palace in the crypto and blockchain industries can't possibly be overstated. If Dorsey and Block are truly committed to bringing blockchain to the forefront of economic development, one would think they would be interested in exploring additional functionalities for other blockchains.
For now, however, Block is doing some exciting work with Bitcoin. Time will tell whether the focus eventually changes and becomes broader.