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24 Million Australians can now pay their bills with Bitcoin

· May 8, 2017 · 4:00 pm

As Bitcoin grows in popularity, more use cases for the cryptocurrency pop up every day. This time, an Australia-based startup has created a service that allows citizens in the country to pay their household bills with Bitcoin.


Paying Bills with Bitcoin

Dubbed the Living Room of Satoshi, the Australian startup allows users to pay their bills with Bitcoin by entering the details of the payment, choosing a payment system (bank account or BPay) and sending their coins to the BTC address shown.

Yesterday Living Room of Satoshi tweeted:

The Living Room of Satoshi’s new service supports payment for any type of utilities like telecommunications, electricity, gas, school fees, water and credit cards. What’s more is that the company charges no extra fees for the BTC payments. The service also features a point system, where every $1 spent in bills awards users with 1 point that can be turned into gifts.

Daniel Alexiuc, CEO of the  Living Room of Satoshi said in an interview:

Daniel Alexiuc, CEO of the Living Room of Satoshi Bitcoin Bill Pay

As the first truly international, decentralised and peer to peer currency, Bitcoin is perfectly suited to bill payments in Australia,” he said. “It also enables new possibilities, like parents in foreign countries being able to easily support their children studying in Australia by paying some of their bills.

Bitcoin in Australia

Australia is generally thought of as a Bitcoin-friendly place. However, the country does have a double-tax issue where the cryptocurrency is considered barter and not money, which means that companies must pay both a tax when receiving cryptocurrencies as a payment and a goods-and-services tax (GST) when selling them for fiat.

However, the Australian government announced plans to solve this issue in March last year Now, according to a statement released last week, the government is working with the FinTech Advisory Group to solve the double taxation problem. The statement reads:

The Government agrees that consumers should not be subject to the GST twice when using digital currency to purchase goods or services. For this reason, the Government has already committed, through its Backing Australian FinTech statement, released on 21 March 2016, to address the ‘double taxation’ of digital currencies.

Other than the absurd double taxation problem which is being taken care of, Bitcoin seems to have a bright future ahead in Australia. The $AUD currently ranks 12th on Bitcoin’s daily trading volume with multiple BTC exchanges and Bitcoin ATMs providing services in the country. Electricity is also cheap, allowing citizens to access Bitcoin through mining.

Not only is Bitcoin easily accessible and popular among the country’s citizen, Australia’s Central Bank has also taken a notice to Bitcoin’s underlying technology, the Blockchain. The bank published a report dubbed  Developments in the Financial System Architecture. It reads:

One aspect of fintech that has been examined closely is the emergence of distributed ledger technology (DLT), often referred to as ‘blockchain’ technology. The Bank is participating in a working group of the Committee on Payments and Market Infrastructures examining DLT and its implications. In February, the working group published an analytical framework for authorities wishing to review and analyse the use of this technology for payments, clearing and settlement.

What can you do with Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is becoming increasingly popular and as more people start working with it, new and exciting use cases and services for the cryptocurrency arise. What was once a “worthless” internet currency can now be used to pay for goods and services across the world, allowing merchants to save money on credit card fees and more.

So, what can you do with Bitcoin? The use cases are extensive: You can buy houses, boats, cars. You can rent a hotel room with Expedia or an apartment, buy millions of items from OverStock, buy gift cards, pay your electricity bills in Japan, pay your college tuition in multiple countries (including Australia). You can even get a Bitcoin IRA, get a Bitcoin loan, and buy and sell gold with BTC on the Vaultoro exchange.

Shut Up and Take My Bitcoin

There’s a lot we can do with Bitcoin nowadays. So much that we are currently running at full capacity. With the infrastructure in place, now all Bitcoin needs in order to continue to grow is the ability to do so in terms of scalability.

Will we continue to see interesting use cases for Bitcoin, like the one discussed here, show up with time? Can the scaling issues in Bitcoin, stop its infrastructure’s progress? Let us know in the comment section.


Images courtesy of LinkedIn, BitcoinTalk, Pixabay

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Different Ways to Raise Funding For A Bitcoin Startup

Source: bitcoin

Bitcoinist_Funding

Starting a company in the Bitcoin world is not that hard these days. All one needs is a good idea, and a proof-of-concept to show this idea is valuable to begin with. But the biggest challenge for most startups is to raise enough funding, as day-to-day operations can be quite costly. Rather than looking for VC funding, there are other alternatives well worth exploring by Bitcoin entrepreneurs.

Also read: OpenBazaar in Depth: Interview with COO Sam Patterson

Raising The Funding For Your Bitcoin Company

When it comes to securing funding for a Bitcoin startup, venture capitalists are the preferred target. Presenting one’s case at any of the Bitcoin conferences around the world is a great way to reach an audience of potential investors, although the end results may vary slightly. Not every concept needs VC backing, though, as there are plenty of other ways to raise funds.

Crowdfunding campaigns in the Bitcoin ecosystem are not all that common just yet, although things are changing. Equity crowdfunding is a particularly interesting trend in the digital currency space these days, where companies will offer a small share of their company in exchange for funding. What makes these campaigns so interesting is how they will get a company lots of press exposure, and there is no need to hunt down individual investors.

Even though most countries around the world are still debating on whether or not they should create a regulatory framework for Bitcoin, there could be a bright future ahead. Bitcoin offers innovation, and any form of innovation should be stimulated through startup grants. It remains to be seen whether or not these perks will ever translate to Bitcoin startups, but it is an alternative form of funding to keep in mind for the future.

Angel investors are quite popular among Bitcoin entrepreneurs these days, as they offer flexible business agreements and bring a strong network of partners to the table. But at the same time, it is difficult to obtain follow-up investments from angel investors. Startup unicorns might be an exception to this rule although they are very uncommon these days.

Last but not least, there is the option of receiving a peer-to–peer loan. Keeping in mind how Bitcoin is all about the peer-to-peer transaction, this type of funding seems to be perfect for digital currency startups and entrepreneurs. These loans provide a fast way to raise capital without sacrificing equity, but they do require some form of collateral in most cases.

There Is No Wrong Approach To Secure Funding

With so many different options at the disposal of startups and entrepreneurs in the Bitcoin industry, there is no wrong way to raise funding. Every individual method has their pro’s and con’s, and cookie-cutter solutions simply do not exist. Different types of businesses will benefit from different approaches.

Raising the necessary funding to get one’s project off the ground is an important aspect of the Bitcoin business world. Just having a bright idea is not enough, as, without money, there is not much progress to be made. That being said, combining several of the options as mentioned above might yield the best results.

How would you go about raising the necessary funding for a bitcoin funding? Are the other ways that are viable as well? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: Tech In Asia

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Catalyst Resources

The post Different Ways to Raise Funding For A Bitcoin Startup appeared first on Bitcoinist.net.

Different Ways to Raise Funding For A Bitcoin Startup

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Blythe Masters Startup Digital Asset Holdings Struggles For Funding

Source: bitcoin

Blythe Masters Startup Digital Asset Holdings Struggles For Funding

The year 2015 has been quite a significant one for Bitcoin regarding the amount of VC funding flowing into the world of digital currency. However, not every Bitcoin startup is seeing its fair share of success, despite initial excitement regarding what they want to bring to the table. Blythe Masters’ Bitcoin startup – called Digital Asset Holdings – is struggling to secure additional funding,

Also read: Samsung Pay Bringing More Competition to Bitcoin by Enabling Online Shopping in 2016

The Digital Asset Holdings Struggle Is Very Real

When a former JPMorgan Chase star banker is having a hard time securing deals with other investors for her new Bitcoin startup, things are looking rather bleak. Although it has to be said these struggles are in part caused by Blythe Masters herself, as Goldman Sachs and Citigroup found out JPMorgan was getting a better deal compared to other interested parties.

Digital Asset Holdings is looking to explore the boundaries of blockchain technology, which is of great interest to any financial institution around the world. As one would come to expect, among interested parties are other banks and financial firms, some of which are directly competing with Blythe Masters’ former employer JPMorgan Chase.

But there are other factors at play in this story as well. Despite the general interest in blockchain technology, financial players are doubtful about the solutions being worked on by Digital Asset Holdings. Blythe Masters has cobbled together most of her startup’s offering by purchasing smaller startups and companies working on the same goal.

With so much competition in the technology space right now, it is difficult for startups to stand out among other companies. Even the blockchain technology development sector is getting oversaturated at this rate, and many companies have made bold claims they have yet to back up. Investors know this process takes time, but their patience isn’t endless either.

No one doubts Blythe Masters can be a valuable addition to the world of Bitcoin and blockchain technology. Her track record at JPMorgan Chase is quite impressive, as she helped develop the credit default swap in the 1990s. Projecting this knowledge to a different breed of technology will be quite a challenge, though.

Investors Are Not Convinced About The Solution

The major thing when it comes to attracting startup funding is ensuring potential investors like the product or service being offered. In the case of Digital Asset Holdings, investors aren’t convinced the startup is providing a service that will address the real problems in the loan market, let alone improve the situation.

Furthermore, rumours are spreading as to how Digital Asset Holdings is struggling to integrate the technology they purchased from other startups into a whole and complete ecosystem. This leads to a lot of frustration among the acquired employees as well, which is not beneficial to the development of this service.

What are your thoughts on Digital Asset Holdings? Will they secure enough funding to stay in business? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: NY Times

Images courtesy of Digital Asset Holdings, Blythe Masters, Shutterstock

The post Blythe Masters Startup Digital Asset Holdings Struggles For Funding appeared first on Bitcoinist.net.

Blythe Masters Startup Digital Asset Holdings Struggles For Funding

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