Payment firm Stripe has said goodbye to Bitcoin payments on its platform on Tuesday, citing high transaction prices and slow processing time as the reasons behind their move. Stripe was one of the first major platforms to enable Bitcoin transactions, helping the cryptocurrency gain better acceptance worldwide.
Stripe scraps Bitcoin but remains bullish on crypto
Stripe announced that the company will be ditching Bitcoin as a payment method on Tuesday. It also announced that the last transactions in the cryptocurrency will be processed on April 23rd this year. Stripe remains convinced that Bitcoin has ‘become a victim of its own popularity’.
The company suggested that the time for completing transactions has increased significantly and payments have failed in the past. Also, the rise in transaction fee doesn’t help the case of cryptocurrency payments anymore. They now see Bitcoin as an asset (and a speculative one at that), not a currency.
Tom Karlo from Stripe commented, “By the time the transaction is confirmed, fluctuations in Bitcoin price mean that it’s for the ‘wrong’ amount. For a regular Bitcoin transaction, a fee of tens of US dollars is common, making Bitcoin transactions about as expensive as bank wires.” The company is clear that they should not allow payments in a currency that nobody would like to use.
Stripe is yet to scrap off its bullish stance on the crypto-economy. As one of the pioneers of crypto-payments on a large scale, the company’s CEO Patrick Collison went ahead of the industry norms in 2014 to make Bitcoin transactions possible. He said, “Universality is the big one for me. Bitcoin is something that anyone can get a hold of.” Aggressive fluctuation in prices could be affecting his universality concept.
Behind the scenes look at BTC payments
Bitcoin has likely outgrown its acceptance as a cryptocurrency and is now being stored as an asset. The fluctuation in Bitcoin prices which works like a speculative investment rather than a cryptocurrency. As a result of this, it is now being seen as an asset. Note that the block size limit has also not increased in Bitcoin for some time, which leads to it becoming an asset only.
The situation with Bitcoin payments is not expected to change automatically, or even within this year. This is because of scaling issues that have been hurting the potential of Bitcoin over the years. The Lightning network may arrive too late to do anything good for the cryptocurrency anytime soon.
Stripe’s customers have also reduced Bitcoin use significantly. In fact, any companies accepting payments through Bitcoin have experienced declining revenues over the years. The current version of the Bitcoin network isn’t doing anything good for the people. In fact, it has been reducing the currency use case of the coin as well.
Stripe hasn’t completely given up on cryptocurrencies yet. They are keeping a close eye on the development of the Bitcoin network. It is likely that they think about resuming Bitcoin payments in the future, especially if the users demand so. The company may also start support for altcoins like Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Stellar and Litecoin but this is only a speculation for now.