In recent months I have seen brick and mortar companies begin accepting bitcoins, and payments through mobile phones. Like clockwork they accept that it is the way of the future. Thinking that they are getting in on the ground floor of mobile payment. But are they?
Most companies already accept credit cards (I’ll be it on an outdated reader), so why do they need to begin using apps. Is the transaction fee really that much less as to need to revamp how payments are taken? One app, LevelUp doesn’t charge a transaction fee and instead sells advertising promotions to merchant who use the software. It all seem to be a perfect method of collecting even more personal data they we already unknowingly give them. But can you blame them for trying to revolutionize the payment business that until recently (credit cards) has been stuck in the same monotonous rut for ages.
For users of bitcoin the benefits of having a decentralized currency out way most of the negatives, if they see any at all; No one person has it all, you must work for it, there is a limited supply (unlike our monetary system now), your can’t be frozen out, and possibly the most enticing benefit is that the government can’t influence it. Those are all well and good but they have no real pertinence to actual purchasing; that can be summed up by saying you can buy ANYTHING (ANYTHING!!) ANYTIME from ANYONE.
Perhaps that also has a downside, but only to those in the order keeping business. The FBI and law enforcement agencies believe that with the uptick in usage of bitcoin, we also will see an uptick in illegal activity.
Sure, why not, just as with most new technologies they will be used by criminals. Think about the advent of credit cards (for the most part the technology in the US has stayed the same while other countries have tightened security). With just a few hundred bucks, one can purchase all that is needed to print exact working copies of credit cards with stolen information.
Until the recent shut down of the Silk Road, it was a place where the black market met social norms. People could peruse the illegal wears of many sellers with the same stylish format of Amazon.
There has been a shift to make bitcoin a viable, respectable currency. Companies are beginning to accept it and there is even a bitcoin ATM in Vancouver. Possibly due to their open stance on just about anything. The first business to accept bitcoin is also from Vancouver, a yoga studio that offer saving of up to 60% when paying with bitcoin. But due to inflation that .05 bitcoin, or as they say is about $5 is actually worth $31.23 today. It seems everyone is looking to use it as an investment platform rather than to actually use it to trade. Maybe we should look at bitcoin as a currency but rather in the sense of a stock.