The Middle East is an area of particular interest to the financial world. Not just because there is a ton of oil concentrated in this part of the world, but also because these countries have a direct influence on the USD value. As a result, Bitcoin growth in the Middle East is attracting attention and there are also a few places where the virtual currency is being accepted.
One of the major Bitcoin stories of the past week has been on whether or not Uber is planning to integrate Bitcoin payments in the future. Whereas it was hinted at first that Bitcoin integration is on the to-do list, Uber quickly decided to counter that statement with an official press release. However, that is not keeping Uber drivers from collecting Bitcoin tips.
Uber Drivers See The Benefits of Bitcoin
Even though Uber is one of the world’s most popular – and hated – decentralized services to this very date, their choice of payment methods strikes many people as rather odd. Granted, customers need to have a convenient way of paying for their rides, and by integrating mobile payments, Uber has taken a big step in the right direction.
The Philippines remain a key area for Bitcoin in terms of taking on the remittance market. Coins.ph, one of the major Bitcoin services companies operating in this market, launched a mobile application called Teller. In doing so, the company can now offer its services to Indonesia and Thailand as well.
Teller – A Peer-to-peer Approach to Bitcoin And its Use Cases
It is no secret that Bitcoin is a far superior way of transferring funds all across the world in terms of remittance. Services such as Western Union are far too expensive for both the sender and the recipient, whereas Bitcoin transactions only invoke a minute transaction fee. This had lead a “remittance arms race” to focus on countries such as the Philippines.
Bitcoin in India is a bit of a difficult subject to tackle. Officially speaking, Bitcoin is not banned in India, even though the government and most financial institutions would rather not get involved for the time being. But that doesn’t mean Bitcoin is not popular in the country. And that popularity has not gone unnoticed.
UnoCoin – Bitcoin Wallet and Payment Processor
The name UnoCoin carries a lot of weight in the Indian Bitcoin community. Not just because this company is similar to Coinbase in many ways, but also because it is the most commonly used Bitcoin platform in India. By offering both a wallet service and a merchant payment processing feature, UnoCoin has become synonymous with Bitcoin in that part of the world.
One of the most common remarks regarding Bitcoin is how it sounds good on paper, but is far from usable in the real world. Granted, Bitcoin is accepted in far fewer stores than we would like, but that doesn’t make it a useless payment method either. And with HotelGo24 now launched, booking a hotel with Bitcoin has never been easier.
Opportunities for The Travelling Bitcoin Enthusiast
Over the past year and a half, we have seen multiple hotels start accepting Bitcoin payments on an individual basis. On top of that, major travel agency Expedia has started to accept Bitcoin payments as well, even though that service has had some hiccups in the early days.
One of the biggest untapped markets for Bitcoin is the country of Japan. That should come as no surprise, as Japan is not hostile towards Bitcoin, but due to the cultural differences, citizens are very wary of new technologies that are not controlled by the government or central authorities. But that might be changing soon, thanks to the efforts made by Quoine.
Quoine – More Than Just a Bitcoin Exchange
Most of our readers will know the name Quoine from the exchange offering, as the company claims to be the largest Bitcoin exchange servicing Japanese customers. That is not all that Quoine offers their customers though, as the company is also known for their ventures into the world of forex trading.
South America is quite an interesting continent for Bitcoin and digital currencies. Most other countries are plagued by hyper-inflated fiat currencies. On top of that, governments do anything they can to decrease the chances of exchanging local fiat currency to any other currency. But BitINKA might be changing all of that in the near future.
BitINKA – Expanding to Cover All of South America
The name BitINKA is fairly common in South American countries such as Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, and Venezuela, as the Bitcoin platform has been available there for quite some time now. But the company isn’t resting on its laurels and plans to expand their services to neighbouring countries such as Chile, Colombia, and Argentina.
More and more companies are starting to see the benefits of accepting digital currency payments such as Bitcoin. Even though there have been various platforms offering domain names and web hosting in exchange for Bitcoin in the past, there is always room for additional companies to do so. And the latest one in that list is called Cloudways.
Cloudways – Cloud Hosting With Latest Technology
In the world of web hosting and cloud services, there is a lot of focus on new technologies and disruptive opportunities to gain an edge over the competition. By accepting Bitcoin payments, Cloudways is taking a major step forward towards accepting alternate payments.
Bitcoin regulation and taxation remains a focal point for governments and digital currency enthusiasts worldwide. With so many countries still on the fence on how they should handle this disruptive alternative currency, it is difficult to predict how everything will play out in the end. But if you live in Switzerland, you can rest assured, as there will be no VAT to pay on Bitcoin for now.
Making Bitcoin more usable in the real world is neither difficult nor easy these days. It all depends on your perception of using Bitcoin as a payment method. If you are looking to pay merchants in Bitcoin directly in the hopes of them keeping a portion of that transaction in BTC, you will have a hard time finding someone. But if you just want to use Bitcoin for everyday purchases, regardless of what the merchant does with it, there is a whole wide world to explore.