Why Spending Your Cryptocurrency is Easier Than Ever
Bitcoin was a truly revolutionary idea — for the first time in history, you could act as your own bank.
Unfortunately, for early adopters, acting as a bank wasn’t easy. Acquiring, storing and actually spending cryptocurrency was a tricky proposition.
However, we’ve come a long way since those early days. Reliable and secure exchanges have made buying, selling and trading digital assets trivially easy. New wallets have made storage a relative snap.
And while we’re still not at the point where spending Bitcoin is as easy as using a conventional credit or debit card, those days may not be far away.
Why Spending Digital Assets is Becoming Easier
Though blockchains and digital assets long ago transcended the limitations of being used as a pure currency (programmable blockchains like Ethereum aspire to be nothing less than “world computers”), buying and selling remains crypto’s original and most natural use case.
Thanks to the following three important developments, the promise of widespread digital currency acceptance is closer than ever to being fulfilled.
- Crypto ATMs. Digital currency ATMs, which allow you to purchase Bitcoin and other digital assets inside restaurants, bars, kiosks, etc., are seeing explosive growth and increasing global adoption. One recent report suggests the size of the digital currency ATM market will expand to nearly $115 million annually, a near tenfold increase from today’s numbers.
- Crypto credit/debit cards. One intriguing new trend is the offering of credit/debit cards by digital currency exchanges. Just as regular debit cards are backed by fiat deposits inside a bank or credit union, crypto cash cards are funded with the assets in an account on a cryptocurrency exchange. The Bitvo Cash Card, for example, is linked to the fiat balance in your Bitvo account and can be used to make purchases worldwide anywhere Visa® is accepted, or to withdraw cash at more than two million ATMs globally.
- Increasing retail/point of sale options. The number of retailers accepting digital currencies continues to expand by the day. Among the major firms that accept Bitcoin are Overstock.com, Subway, Expedia, PayPal and Microsoft. Acceptance of digital currencies as direct payment is expected to surge in the coming years, as the technology matures and transactions become faster. Thanks to the development of the Lightning Network, an offchain, second layer solution designed to make Bitcoin transactions much faster, we could soon be approaching an era where cryptocurrency is as useful as cash in a retail, brick and mortar setting.
Fulfilling the Original Promise of Digital Currency
As the technology supporting digital currencies continues to mature, transactions will become not only faster, but also more reliable. As that occurs, merchant adoption will increase, making cryptocurrency a viable alternative to existing payment systems.
Cryptocurrency credit/debit cards will also play a key role in this process, as they allow holders access to the best of both worlds: the opportunity to hold and trade in a digital asset while enjoying the speed and flexibility of existing payment processing networks.
As a Bitvo client, cryptocurrency traders benefit from exclusive access to the Bitvo Cash Card with enhanced features.