In the year 2014, Stripe began to support Bitcoin. In 2018, they’ve decided that Bitcoin is no longer a viable means of digital payment. Instead, they say, Bitcoin’s become less of a payment system and more of an asset. Stripe isn’t all about keeping assets – as such, they’re winding down Bitcoin support over the next few months.
Stripe product manager Tom Karlo spoke up today on the subject, saying the company had hope for Bitcoin, initially. “Our hope was that Bitcoin could become a universal, decentralized substrate for online transactions and help our customers enable buyers in places that had less credit card penetration or use cases where credit card fees were prohibitive.” That went south over the past couple of years as Bitcoin became mega-popular.
Bitcoin block size limits, speed of transfer, and the volatility of the value of any amount of Bitcoin were all cited in Karlo’s statement. Stripe is a business based on payment systems that are established as payment systems. They’re looking forward to cryptocurrencies becoming mainstream, but aren’t sticking with Bitcoin just because it’s the most popular cryptocurrency.
They’re shying away from Bitcoin because, as Karlo noted, “Transaction confirmation times have risen substantially; this, in turn, has led to an increase in the failure rate of transactions denominated in fiat currencies. (By the time the transaction is confirmed, fluctuations in Bitcoin price mean that it’s for the “wrong” amount.)”
That makes a whole lot of sense. Bitcoin might be used as a currency at some point, but right this minute it’s a wild stallion. Bitcoin transactions will stop being processed on April 23, 2018. The company plans to “work with affected Stripe users to ensure a smooth transition.”
Karlo went on to list a number of projects and crypto technologies Stripe is interested in at this moment. Those groups were: Lightning, OmiseGO, Ethereum, Stellar, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin.
OF special note is the fact that Stripe provided seed money to Stellar when they first sought cash. That alone might be the best reason to add it to their network. I wouldn’t be surprised to see that happen sooner than later.
As it is with all articles about Bitcoin, cryptocurrency, and/or blockchain-related projects, this article is not to be considered financial advice. Seek out the professionals in this field to assist you with your portfolio of whatever it is you use to invest, and keep a weather eye on research as you see fit. No action by a reader before, during, or after reading this article is the responsibility of SlashGear or the author of the words therein.