Technological advancements, no matter how good they are, will always have naysayers discrediting it. Introducing novel products takes guts and courage. People will only come to realise its significance when it is backed up by well-known personalities and companies.
The same is true when the world was introduced cryptocurrencies. A lot of people denounced it as something passing – an innovation without a future. However, after several years of existing in the market, it looks like cryptocurrencies are here to stay and are on its way in changing the way people do business. Big companies and investors embracing the technology are forcing regulators to step in and do their job.
Whilst the success of cryptocurrencies is not yet definite, big tech companies are now biting the bullet. Here are some companies joining the cryptocurrency industry.
Big Firms Joining the Cryptocurrency Industry
After months of speculation, Facebook announced last month the details of its planned cryptocurrency platform. Codenamed Libra, the platform will allow its users to purchase from the company’s applications and a host of third-party sites. The company hopes that Facebook’s large user base could make the platform the widely used currency in the world.
Facebook also launched a subsidiary company, Calibra, to manage the currency. The company will have its own wallet can be built into Messenger, WhatsApp, and also its own app. The said company will be responsible for collecting and using data independently of its core business. With the use of a different company, users hope that Facebook will not be able to use and exploit their spending history for targeted advertising.
To further build trust in their platform, Facebook took the initiative to establish the Libra Association to consolidate other payment rivals such as PayPal, Mastercard, and Visa so they can get in different voices when it comes to voting.
JPMorgan is a financial and investment bank is the first in its industry to announce that it will launch its own cryptocurrency. This is despite CEO Jamie Dimon’s declaration of Bitcoin as a fraud back in 2017. The investment company branded its new currency as JPM Coin. Trials have begun, with the banks using the coin to settle payments between clients instantly.
JPM Coin has three uses: 1) for securities transactions, 2) for international payments for large corporate clients, and 3) for dollar replacement in large treasury services across the world.
Dimon now claims that blockchain has a future and JPM Coin is not an asset similar to Bitcoin where people can invest in but rather an innovative tool the bank can use when doing business with its huge institutional clients.
Jack Dorsey, famous for founding Twitter, is also making its moves towards the cryptocurrency market by launching Square. Crypto Square is a payment business intended to improve money by making open source contributions to the Bitcoin and the crypto ecosystem whilst the main Square app will only facilitate the use of alternate payments for transactions.
A lot of companies are well aware of digital currency or cryptocurrency as the future of business. This is evidenced by the growing number of notable companies now accepting blockchain technology as an acceptable payment for goods and services. This is another positive sign that cryptocurrency is slowly making its way to the mainstream of business.
Companies Accepting Cryptocurrency Payments
Booking a flight with digital currency is now possible through CheapAir. Since 2013, the company has accepted Litecoin, Dash, and Bitcoin payments for booking a flight, hotels, cars, and a host of other services.
Expedia is a global travel technology company that now accepts cryptocurrency payments. Buyers must take note, however, that any transactions with Expedia using Bitcoin cannot be cancelled.
Microsoft began accepting cryptocurrency payments as early as 2014, making it one of the first tech giants to accept Bitcoin payments for its products. Their commitment to cryptocurrency seems to falter every now and then as they would often make announcements that they would no longer accept Bitcoin payments due to high fees and volatility.
Overstock announced in August 2017 that they will start accepting cryptocurrencies as a mode of payment for all their products. Aside from Bitcoin, the company also accepts other currencies such as Litecoin, Ethereum, Monero, and Dash.
The company uses ShapeShift, a digital asset exchange company to complete crypto transactions. The currencies are converted through blockchain within seconds and do not require setting up an account.
Another financial institution to accept Bitcoin payments is PayPal. The company uses GoCoin, Coinbase, and Bitpay as payment processors. The company is also pushing to include Ethereum as an additional accepted crypto payment.
The company is one of the earliest to accept cryptocurrency, beginning in 2013. Pizzaforcoins is one of the few companies to accept a wide range of crypto payment, accepting more than 50 digital currencies. In fact, it is the only form of payment they accept.
Setting up an e-commerce shop is possible via cryptocurrencies. Shopify started accepting Bitcoin as early as 2013.
Subway lets its customers trade digital currencies for meal items. Some stores accept Bitcoin and Litecoin not only in the US but also in Slovakia and Russia.
These big companies have surely taken a major risk when they started accepting Bitcoins and other forms of digital currency to run their business. Lucky for them, their decision is doing them good. Still, a lot of companies are still not as open as to accepting cryptocurrencies for various reasons. This includes:
Some businesses, particularly the small ones, have acceptable fear with regard to the high volatility of cryptocurrencies. Many of these businesses rely on stability. They cannot risk the wild swings in crypto value as it is harder for them to absorb and deal with losses.
Whilst cryptocurrencies are still unregulated, governments of different countries are now slowly making their way to regulate the industry. When this happens, it can be troublesome for them as they may have to shoulder heftier taxes, for which they did not account in the first place.