In 2020, since COVID-19, everything in the world has stalled. The pandemic has accelerated the digitalization that began many years ago, as retail and service businesses needed to support their businesses so as not to lose everything. A plethora of companies have reorganized business management to save sinking ships, disrupting all processes.
We have also seen the proliferation of IT companies, the emergence of innovative approaches in industries such as fashion, beauty, art, food delivery, AR, i-gaming and esports. .
With such a shift to digital business, crypto payments have become widespread among online services and retail. Now you can buy, trade, trade and sell bitcoin instantly when you need it. So what is virtual currency and which industries and businesses are now widely accepting BTC?
Virtual currency is digital money that no financial institution manages. Today, more than 4000 different cryptocurrencies are listed. Among them the most requested are Bitcoin, Ethereum, DOGE, Ripple, etc. Since the first explosion of cryptocurrency, many companies have started to accept it as a method of payment.
Let’s take a closer look at where the transformation has taken place and which companies have started accepting Bitcoin as a payment method.
Overstock.com overtook Microsoft and PayPal by going crypto. CNN reported in 2018 that Overstock was then primarily a virtual currency company, a misrepresentation based on the online retailer’s strong presence in blockchain technology. Before COVID propelled Overstock to its current status as one of the world’s largest e-commerce systems, it had become a Bitcoin veteran. Overstock became the first major retailer to accept cryptocurrency payments in January 2014, nearly nine months before PayPal did in September of that year and almost a year before Microsoft.
A huge company, known in every coin of the world, was among the first to adopt Bitcoin as a payment method. Since 2014, Microsoft has accepted cryptography for various digital content, games and applications for platforms running Windows. Even though, for security reasons, Bitcoin payments have been banned for a certain period of time, the ability to pay for services with virtual currencies is back in effect in 2021.
The pioneer digital payments company started accepting Bitcoin as soon as digital currency gained popularity in September 2014. At that time, PayPal’s decision was supposed to target businesses rather than consumers on its platform. The appeal of Bitcoin was that its transaction fees were significantly lower than the 2% to 3% fee that companies were spending on credit card transactions.
Nowadays, several IT companies are following the crypto trend and accepting payments in BTC. Namely, these are Archos, AVnet, GoDark, etc.
Although Etsy does not have a platform to accept Bitcoin as a payment method on the platform, independent sellers who populate its platform can accept cryptocurrency in their individual stores if they wish. It is the seller’s responsibility to include another payment method option when purchasing. When buyers select this option, they can message the buyer with their payment choices – Bitcoin. To make a payment, the seller responds with a Bitcoin address. The Etsy Community Forum has a Bitcoin-specific page with guides on how sellers can promote that they accept Bitcoin and how to make the experience more convenient.
The majority of coffee lovers were excited when Starbucks released the news about accepting Bitcoins for their products in 2020. You might think you could pay for your cappuccino at the cashier. In fact, it is far from the truth. Basically the only thing you can do is replenish the Starbucks app with Bitcoin, along with frequent flyer gift card balances and miles, and pay that way. Such payments have become possible thanks to Bakkt, a digital wallet that exchanges BTC for USD, making instant payments possible.
One of the biggest Japanese shopping sites, Rakuten, followed the trend and included Bitcoin as a payment option. The group started business with Rakuten.com in the United States as part of a massive Bitcoin implementation before expanding the new service to its counterparts in Germany and Austria. Rakuten has achieved this by integrating the Bitnet online payment platform into its own marketplaces. Since then, he has developed Rakuten Wallet, which now supports cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin Cash and Ethereum. Customers can now use virtual assets to replenish their Rakuten Cash balance.
What other food companies and marketplaces accept BTC payments?
Popular fast food outlets like Burger King, Domino’s Pizza and Toga have joined the trend, and you can now pay for your favorite snacks and drinks in Bitcoin.
When everyone got stuck at home, we all went online for some entertainment. Even art galleries like the Louvre have launched online 3D tours to lift the spirits of depressed people and remind them that even in difficult times, art can be reborn.
In the circumstances COVID has put us in, platforms like Netflix and YouTube have grown in popularity dramatically, offering more and more high-quality content. So, with the hype of virtual currency, entertainment media has not been left out.
A big whale among entertainment platforms is Twitch, which is owned by Amazon. Virtual currency – and not just Bitcoin – is accepted by one of the most popular streaming platforms. You are allowed to pay in Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ether, and lesser-known altcoins such as BUSD, PAX, GUSD, USDC, and XRP. Twitch appeared to be an enthusiastic supporter of digital currency, offering it as a payment option in 2014.
This, however, ended in 2019 when Twitch deactivated its Bitcoin service. However, the entertainment platform restored this capability in June 2020, much to the delight of its crypto-savvy users.
The Wikimedia Foundation is a United States-based charitable and nonprofit organization. He is best known for owning Wikipedia, the world’s largest free encyclopedia. They accept credit / debit cards, e-wallets, and online banking donations.
Since 2014, you can donate to Wiki using BitPay. Only Bitcoin donations can be refunded in Bitcoin. Payments are calculated based on the amount of US dollars received at the time of donation.
Other companies accepting BTC
iTunes, Bittunes, Long Player and Tradebit have emerged among the media foundations accepting virtual currencies.