Xapo (xapo.com) started out as an online Bitcoin wallet for micro payments.
And they were very useful in the beginning.
You could collect small Bitcoin payments (e.g. from faucets) in your Xapo wallet, avoiding the absurd blockchain fees, then withdraw it to your real wallet, pay other Xapo users without fees, etc.
There were always issues with their support, and their mobile app was a bit annoying, but hey, it worked, and was more or less free.
I had a Xapo account, had it verified, and was using it here and there.
Then Xapo expanded and ventured into potentially more lucrative business models – like Bitcoin based debit cards.
Everything about Xapo is funny: their claims, their Bitcoin price, and, most of all, their ‘support’…
They updated their Xapo mobile app – and it greeted old users with the demand to go through the onboarding process again.
‘Hey, let’s start with entering your phone number…’
Goddamnit, you n00bs, you HAVE my phone number… let me access my account…
But yeah, well… let’s get it done.
Their phone verification system sucks – it sends out the text messages with the confirmation code so late that the code is not accepted any more… the alternative (receive an automated voice call with the code) was equally useful.
After a couple hours the system managed to give me ONE code in time, the app accepted the code… and: error message.
‘Trying to validate an already validated cert, or to update a cert that hasn’t been validated yet.’
M’kay, Xapo. Whatever that might be, it does not exactly give me access to my ooooold account.
Web login still worked incl. 2FA, so I contacted Xapo support, described the problem, provided screenshot, was quite polite (in the beginning).
Answers: most epic fail to understand (or even try to understand) the problem, total useless fluff, and between the lines a very clear ‘I SO don’t care if you can use the app or not, just fuck off, we HATE customers.’
OK Xapo – your wish has been granted.
I have requested to close my account (you can not do that yourself in their online account management, btw. a clear breach of regulations in Europe), let’s see if they get THAT done, at least.
I still had a few Satoshi in my account, of course those are forfeit, since Xapo does not allow you to withdraw small amounts to external addresses.
Combine that ‘support experience’ with those of countless others, add the mostly terrible user experiences with the Xapo debit card that you can read all over the web, and several instances of Bitcoin theft (not releasing BTC balances after declining to verify submitted ID documents for arbitrary ‘reasons’), tons of scam accusations – and you might come to the conclusion that you do NOT want to use ANY of the Xapo services.
Xapo could still be the best micro payment solution for people who want to pay/receive small amounts of Bitcoin without horrendous fees.
They fucked that up, too – by growing beyond their skills and sacrificing support quality along the road.
A deadly mistake.
There are better Bitcoin Debit Card providers out there, and Bitcoin-based micro-payments will finally stop being a pain in the ass once K.im and Bitcache go live.
Byebye, Xapo. No tears shed.