Bitcoin – payments and payment cards options
Money Polo is closely monitoring what is happening in the world of payment processors and providers, particularly in relation to innovations in monetary transfers. They now represent a particularly disruptive blockchain, bitcoin and other cryptocurrency technologies. We have decided to bring you regular news summaries and notice new projects related to these new technologies. You can find a review of the most interesting news here once every 2 weeks.
E-Coin issues its own bitcoin debit card
Bitcoin start-up E-Coin has begun to issue its own debit card that works in all places that accept Visa cards. Holders of these cards will be able to use all the services provided by Visa from current transactions and online purchases to cash withdrawals from ATMs. The E-Coin debit card can be recharged through bitcoin repayment; however, it cannot yet be used in some larger markets, such as the USA and India. It is precluded by local regulatory legislation; but it is only a matter of agreements with local banking partners according to Dmitry Lazarichev, a co-owner and spokesman of E-Coin. Currently, E-coin is working on an agreement with the other card companies such as MasterCard and American Express.
XAPO bitcoin card cannot yet be used in the USA
XAPO, one of the best-known bitcoin payment companies, deals with a similar problem as E-coin does. Its debit cards are very popular and even though they are used around the world in cooperation with Visa, they have been denied access to the USA and certain other countries. In addition to the residents of the United States, the services provided by XAPO cannot be used even by the inhabitants of Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Vietnam, the Virgin Islands and some African countries.
Unlike other Bitcoin cards behaving more like the prepaid gift cards with an increase of their balance in the form of bitcoin charging, XAPO operates on a different principle. Its users’ bitcoins will be debited directly from the XAPO wallet, just like a regular card withdrawing money from a bank account. The card is also supported by billions of merchants accepting Visa cards worldwide.
France – payment companies will reach an agreement with the rights holders against pirates
The French government is currently deciding on whether to authorize the payment and card companies, such as MasterCard, Visa and Paypal, to refrain from making payment transactions related to pirate sites. This concerns the cases in which music and other works of art copyright holders (among them, for example, the MPAA, RIAA, or PSR associations) complain about similar sites. Thus, all pirate sites could be added to a blacklist which would be controlled by the copyright holders, irrespective of the French courts. Similar unofficial agreement between copyright owners and payment processors has already been actively asserted in the US and the UK.
Wall Street and large investors are beginning to take bitcoin seriously
Large financial sector companies have invested about $ 30 million this month in Chain Inc., a San Francisco company that in partnership with banks and other institutions develops the ways of trade and transfers of financial assets using the technology that Bitcoin is based on.
The largest investors include Visa Inc., Nasdaq Inc., Citi Ventures, Capital One Financial Corp., Fiserv Inc. and Orange SA. The head of Chain Inc. is now Jim Robinson III, the former CEO of American Express, who has become a member of its board of directors.
The investment is the latest development on Wall Street with its banks and other financial companies once taking bitcoin as a matter of fashion which is unlikely to transform to a common part of the business and financial transfers. It seems that times begin to change…