In a blow for serious gamers who use the world’s most popular cryptocurrency, bitcoin, Steam announced they would no longer accept it as a method of payment. Price volatility and high transaction fees doomed the relationship. In freer economies, however, other companies like Bitrefill see such problems as an opportunity to gain market share by providing customers a lifeline to coveted services. And sensing advantage as well, the online classified marketplace, Craigslist, now allows users the ability to specify that they accept cryptocurrency payments between users.
Also read: Reddit’s /r/btc Reaches 100,000+ Subscribers
Bitcoinless Steam? Bitrefill to the Rescue!
It would be difficult to blame Steam. Bitcoin is on fire, and it’s having massive problems scaling. Users on exchanges, those merely trying to access them, have all experienced long delays in processing, especially during price runs.
Its parent company, Valve, took to cyberspace and complained/explained loss-loss frustration with friction-filled bitcoin. Users lashed out in over 400 comments. “Death of BTC is coming soon…,” a comment ranted. “200,000 unconfirmed transactions, 10-20$ fee/tax,” it stated.
Other users were more philosophical. “Valve makes a good point. The trading fees of Bitcoin cut into their profit and some transactions are $5USD or less. While I appreciate their exercising control over their business, they are removing a method of payment. I would suggest that Valve re-enable Bitcoin with a minimum as to balance the transaction fees. Maybe Bitcoin will be easier to work with in the future.”
More than a few users suggested the company “add Bitcoin Cash. It’s the real, original, fast and cheap Bitcoin.”
Bitrefill, known mostly as a mobile phone application, saw an opening. “We’re happy to announce that you can now again pay for your Steam gaming with Bitcoin–buying Steam vouchers directly through Bitrefill!” it enthused.
One Door Closes, Many More Open
“Steam vouchers can be paid for through regular Bitrefill transactions,” they explained, “but also through off-chain payments with Coinbase accounts, Xapo accounts and Localbitcoins accounts. You can even try our experimental native Litecoin support.”
“We at Bitrefill are more committed than ever to continue our mission of enabling Bitcoin to be used as money by people all over the world,” it finished.
Isaac Rocket first reported the online classified marketplace board, Craigslist, “has added a new option when making a for-sale post, titled ‘cryptocurrency ok’.”
It is perhaps the best mainstream case to-date of bitcoin’s ultimate utility: where cash can fail and be dangerous in larger transactions for, say, automobiles, bitcoin enables peer-to-peer confidence and transparency.
Mr. Rocket continued, “Yahoo’s Co-Founder recently said that he believed that Bitcoin could become a global force for good. Riding on the back of surging crypto markets across the board, we’ve also seen the payment service Square experimenting with Bitcoin as well,” suggesting tales of the decentralized currency’s demise are overplayed.
The San Francisco-based company is a staple for job seekers, apartment hunters, social functions, sales cars, pets – just about anything. It has been around since the birth of the internet itself, and can be accessed in 70 countries and hundreds of cities around the world. It routinely ranks in the top 100 websites globally.
What are your thoughts on bitcoin as a payment system? Tell us in the comments!
Images courtesy of Pixabay, Reddit, Bitrefill, Steam.
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