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The issue with bitcoin is transaction time and verification. Doing it with another cryptocurrency would be possible.

What's involved isn't that dissimilar to what is being done with credit cards with a chip. There you have a private key signing that a transaction is valid.

The only difference is that the validation is sent to a server that modifies some databases based on the authentification, then you have some clearing houses transfer money between big institutional parties and retailers up to weeks later.

Instead in this case the authentification is just posted somewhere public, and accounts are calculated dynamically from that. With ripple that isn't quite true, and it is a potential option. There it is a simple modification. Instead of every node keeping track of unspent txs every node keeps track of the end balance of every address, which is sort of like caching except where the source data of the cache isn't even needed so it's the same end result but in all regards more efficient.

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Phones are now NFC too.

You can do an LN transaction with a QRCode or NFC.