Quite a few Bitcoin enthusiasts are closely eyeing the regulatory proceedings in the United States. Multiple states are looking at ways to give Bitcoin a legislative and regulatory framework, affecting both individual users and companies in the area. After the disaster of BitLicense, California was the next state on the list to propose a framework draft. That Bitcoin bill was shut down quickly though, as it failed to pass in Legislature a few days ago.
One of the more convenient ways to buy digital currency is by locating a Bitcoin ATM in the area. Rather than completing online verification procedures and relying on bank transfers to clear before buying Bitcoins, these ATM’s will take fiat currency bills. Doing so allows the entire process to be completed much faster, while getting some hands-on experience with a Bitcoin ATM as well. Bern, the capital of Switzerland, now has its very own Bitcoin ATM.
Bitcoin and virtual currency are on the minds of a lot of people, ranging from consumers to legislators and from bankers to academics. Despite resistance by the financial sector to embrace Bitcoin itself, the underlying blockchain technology is catching the attention of many developers and engineers. Things have just gotten a lot more interesting now that Ledger has launched.
Ledger – Not to be Confused with the Bitcoin Hardware Wallet
The name Ledger will ring a bell for most of our readers, as this is one of the many companies producing Bitcoin hardware wallet solutions. But the Ledger in this article is not that company, but rather the name of an academic magazine focusing on cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.
Making a Bitcoin exchange platform more appealing to international customers can be done in various ways. Offering more international payment methods is just one way to tackle this problem. In the case of major Bitcoin exchange BTC China, the team decided to rebrand to “BTCC”, as part of their international expansion plan.
Interesting Name Change for International Expansion
Having the term “China” associated with a Bitcoin exchange can cause a few issues down the line. Novice users might assume that BTC China is only available to Chinese or Asian customers, even though the platform can service nearly every country in the world right now. Plus, with most of the Bitcoin trading volume originating in China, a name such as “BTC China” could create a bit of confusion in the community.
Slowly but surely, the financial world is warming up to the idea of both Bitcoin and blockchain technology. While the latter category is an area of expertise being explored by banks and other financial institutions around the world, Bitcoin is making its way to OTC markets. But that is not all, as ARK became the first public fund manager to invest in Bitcoin just recently.
ARK Web First ETF To Invest in Bitcoin
Investing in Bitcoin as an ETF is not as straightforward as some people might think. An ETF can not, unlike individual Bitcoin traders, purchase virtual currency directly and call it an investment. ARK Web purchased publicly traded shares of Grayscale’s Bitcoin Investment Trust (ticker OTCQX: GBTC) to make their virtual currency investment.
Underbanked parts of the world could benefit a lot from Bitcoin and the underlying blockchain technology. Considering there is next to no financial infrastructure to speak of in most of these countries, Bitcoin offers citizens a way to send and receive funds in a convenient way, outside of the governmental ecosystem. India remains one of the frontrunners in terms of Bitcoin adoption, with things looking more and more positive every week.
Over the next few years, many Bitcoin clones will start popping up all over the world. Unlike what the virtual currency community has been used to in terms of altcoins, these clones will mimic Bitcoin technology without necessarily using a form of payment attached to it. That being said, the “new E-Gold” might try to steal Bitcoin’s crown, although there is no guarantee of success so far.
E-Gold: Virtual Payments Backed By Gold, However…
The topic of sending payments online in a convenient and secure manner has brought forth many types of platforms over the years. One of the most popular online payment solutions – for a while at least – was E-Gold, a platform that issued their own “currency” backed by gold assets.
Merging the existing financial ecosystem with the world of Bitcoin and virtual currencies is not an easy task. While there is a clear legal framework for the financial sector, virtual currencies are facing an uphill battle when it comes to regulation and legislation. However, there is a small light at the end of the tunnel, as Bitcoin derivatives exchange LedgerX received temporary approval from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
One of the main concerns regarding Bitcoin is the current price volatility. As a result, merchants are not keen on denominating prices in Bitcoin value and offer the customer a conversion from fiat value to Bitcoin value during checkout. Once a payment has been received in Bitcoin; it will most likely be converted to fiat currency immediately. But that situation could be about to change, assuming banks will embrace permissionless blockchains.
Bitcoin allows customers from all over the world to purchase everyday goods in a convenient fashion. Most consumers assume Bitcoin payments can only be used for electronics and gift cards and while there are many shops offering those products, there is a lot more to Bitcoin than just that. Just recently, nutritionally balanced powdered food MANA became purchasable with Bitcoin.
MANA – Similar to Soylent, Gets You Through the Day
Over the past few years, some very niche products and service were made available in exchange for Bitcoin payments. While most people would think of illegal goods and services, there are far more legitimate products to be purchased with Bitcoin and other virtual currencies. MANA is just one example of “out-of-the-box” products you can pay for with Bitcoin.