The gap between commerce and cryptocurrencies is closing. It might not be closing as fast as some people would like, but the ways people pay for goods and services is starting to change.
Indeed, we only have to look at the companies that currently accept crypto payments.
Elon Musk, a longtime supporter of cryptocurrencies, made Tesla accept Dogecoin payments in 2022. As well as making it a valid payment option for selected merchandise, Tesla owners can pay for supercharging credit with Dogecoin. The multi-billionaire has since signaled his desire to make cryptocurrency payments part of another company he owns, Twitter.
Musk Spearheading a Payment Revolution
Although there is a long way to go until his plan comes to fruition, Musk announced in 2023 that he wants Twitter to have its own payment platform. This platform would process Twitter transactions in fiat currencies primarily. However, he told the Financial Times that, in the future, he wants it to accept cryptocurrencies.
Talk of integrating cryptocurrencies into mainstream products is pie in the sky. In other words, it’s more wishful thinking than anything that could become a reality. The difference with companies owned by Musk is that he’s an expert in digital payments. He helped create PayPal and championed the idea of digital payments long before most financial institutions thought it was possible. Therefore, when he says cryptocurrencies are a focus, you know there’s a good chance they’ll happen.
Outside of companies owned by Musk, the online gaming industry has become a somewhat unexpected area of innovation in the crypto payments space. For example, Playfina bitcoin casino Canada has been given a 4.2/5 rating by Casino Bonus CA for, among other things, its payment options. Users can deposit the equivalent of CAD$20 and play over 6,000 games using Bitcoin. This system is replicated across dozens more casinos in Canada and the world at large.
The Times Are Changing
Twitch, another major player in the gaming world, also accepts crypto payments. Users have been able to buy “Bits” using Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies since 2014. Streamers can also accept donations in crypto tokens using a third-party wallet such as NOWPayments. This innovation is perhaps the most important at this moment in time. As we’ve said, having cryptocurrency as a default payment option is slowly becoming a reality.
However, we’re still not at the point where we can pay directly for goods and services using crypto. There are some exceptions, as we’ve highlighted. However, in general, direct payments using cryptocurrencies are rare. This is where third-party apps have come in. Products such as BitPay make it possible for consumers to pay for goods and services, even if a company doesn’t process crypto payments directly. Essentially, BitPay and companies like it are bridges that link cryptocurrencies to the mainstream.
All great journeys start with a single step and, at this stage, it looks like the route to mainstream acceptance is via intermediaries. The process of sending tokens from one crypto wallet to another is fairly simple once you’ve done it a few times. However, for first-timers, it can be confusing. Not only that, the jeopardy is too high. One mistake can cause someone to lose their tokens forever. That’s why third-parties such as BitPay are driving forward the possibility of crypto payments becoming a standard option.
Bridging the Gap to Create New Opportunities
All someone has to do is install the BitPay extension to Google Chrome and it allows you to pay with a variety of cryptos. There are currently more than 200 retailers signed up to BitPay, including Walmart, Adidas, and Dominos. In addition to online payments, BitPay users can get a special debit card.
The card allows holders to spend money or make ATM withdrawals just as they would if the funds were being deducted from their checking account. However, with the BitPay card, funds are being taken from a crypto wallet and converted into cash so that a merchant can process the payment.
This is a clever system and a great example of how traditional payment systems are being combined with cryptocurrencies to create something new. There’s still a long way to go before these innovations break through, but the winds of change are certainly blowing harder than they ever have done. The payment revolution is in process, and that’s exciting news for businesses and consumers.