The spate of auspicious news has continued over the past 24 hours in the crypto space. Among the leading stories was a partnership between Gemini and Flexa to launch a crypto payment solution that will be accepted at various world-renowned retailers. Derivatives exchange CME Group reported an all-time high record for daily bitcoin futures volume. Microsoft unveiled an early preview of a decentralized identifier network built atop the Bitcoin blockchain.

The cryptocurrency market responded favourably to what was arguably the industry’s best news day in recent memory. At the time of writing, bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) are trading at $8,209.62 (+16.78%) and $212.48 (+13.18%), respectively. The MVIS CryptoCompare Digital Assets 10 Index is currently tracking at 3,643.41, a 5.45% rise over the past 24 hours.

Flexa, Gemini Partner on Solution to Bring Bitcoin to Major Retailers

Crypto exchange and custodian Gemini partnered with Flexa to launch a real-time cryptocurrency payment system for consumers. With the use of Flexa’s SPEDN mobile wallet app, users can pay for a wide range of goods and services using either bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH), bitcoin cash (BCH), or Gemini dollars (GUSD). Among the fifteen merchant partners already integrated with Flexa’s self-named payment network are Amazon-owned Whole Foods, GameStop, Barnes & Noble, and Nordstrom. As another outcome of the partnership, Gemini will custody all cryptocurrency deposited on the SPEDN mobile app.

CME Group Celebrates Record Bitcoin Future Volumes

CME Group, the largest options and futures exchange in the world, reported its bitcoin futures product reached “an all-time record high of 33.7K contracts on May 13 (168K equivalent bitcoin), up nearly 50% from the last record of 22.5K contracts on April 4.” According to exchange volume data from Bitwise, CME Group’s daily bitcoin futures volume is, at the time of writing, $1.32 billion; a total slightly greater than the combined 24-hour trading volumes of Binance and Coinbase.

Microsoft Previews Bitcoin-Based Decentralized Identifier Network

Microsoft announced on Monday it is test-running a decentralized identifier (DID) network built atop the Bitcoin blockchain. The open-source project, known as ‘Ion’, will focus on developing protocols which allow different networks to communicate with each other, according to an announcement by the vice president of program management for Microsoft Identity Division, Alex Simons.