First Major Company to Support Bitcoin Payments Throws in the Towel
Stripe, the first major company to support bitcoin payments, announced today it will Ditch Bitcoin Support.
Stripe, the firm which helps more than 100,000 businesses do financial transactions online, is to scrap support for Bitcoin payments.
It said Bitcoin users now saw the virtual currency largely as an "asset" to be traded, rather than something to make payments with. Fewer online merchants wanted to accept the cryptocurrency, it added. Rising fees and longer transaction times as a result of price fluctuations also lessened its appeal, Stripe said.
In 2014, it became the first major payments company to support Bitcoin payments. At the time Stripe said it hoped Bitcoin would become a way for people in places with low credit card penetration or prohibitively high credit card fees to do transactions online. But the virtual currency was now "better-suited to being an asset than being a means of exchange," it said.
The Stripe Blog has more details on Why Stripe is Ending Bitcoin Support.
Transaction confirmation times have risen substantially; this, in turn, has led to an increase in the failure rate of transactions denominated in fiat currencies. (By the time the transaction is confirmed, fluctuations in Bitcoin price mean that it’s for the “wrong” amount.) Furthermore, fees have risen a great deal. For a regular Bitcoin transaction, a fee of tens of U.S. dollars is common, making Bitcoin transactions about as expensive as bank wires.
Because of this, we’ve seen the desire from our customers to accept Bitcoin decrease. And of the businesses that are accepting Bitcoin on Stripe, we’ve seen their revenues from Bitcoin decline substantially. Empirically, there are fewer and fewer use cases for which accepting or paying with Bitcoin makes sense.
Therefore, starting today, we are winding down support for Bitcoin payments. Over the next three months we will work with affected Stripe users to ensure a smooth transition before we stop processing Bitcoin transactions on April 23, 2018.
Despite this, we remain very optimistic about cryptocurrencies overall. There are a lot of efforts that we view as promising and that we can certainly imagine enabling support for in the future. We’re interested in what’s happening with Lightning and other proposals to enable faster payments. OmiseGO is an ambitious and clever proposal; more broadly, Ethereum continues to spawn many high-potential projects.
How to Buy a Pizza Not
In the above video, The Wall Street Journal attempted to use Bitcoin in the real world to buy things. They ordered a Pizza. It took 4 hours to confirm the transaction and the fee was $76.
Bitcoin has zero use as a transaction currency. It's only use is speculation.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock