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Bitcoin Microsoft The Almighty Buck

Microsoft Quietly Starts Accepting Bitcoin As Payment Method 107

An anonymous reader writes A new page in the help guide in the payment information of Microsoft's website reveals that the Redmond giant is now accepting Bitcoin as a payment method for products and services on Windows, Windows Phone and Xbox. Currently the payments must go through to credit a Microsoft Wallet account, and the service is initially only available to U.S. users. But the wording of the new page combines with an expansive year for Microsoft and a number of positive statements about Bitcoin from Bill Gates to indicate that this first step is more than just an experiment. Microsoft is now the largest commercial entity accepting the Bitcoin currency, which it processes via the BitPay system, thus protecting the company from fluctuations in the value of Bitcoin. Also at CNN Money.
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Microsoft Quietly Starts Accepting Bitcoin As Payment Method

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    I'm seriously starting to think that regular currency will be no more in the future. I should have started mining early though, you pretty much can't get bitcoins anymore without paying for them.

    • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

      by jellomizer ( 103300 )

      I am just waiting for more legitimate businesses to start dealing with bit coins.
      I mean most of the sites that you go to get bit coins are kinda questionable.
      And it seems you can only buy cheap poor quality stuff with bit coins.

  • As a Market Lover (Score:2, Interesting)

    by artlu ( 265391 )

    I find the emergence of bitcoin and other virtual currencies alarming. We have "free markets," that are governed by some type of ruling bodies be it the IMF or the Fed (not a government entity, for those that didn't know). However, the acceptance of an unregulated currency is strife with the ability for fraud and manipulation. However, as a stock trader (see my blog The Market is not Random [tminr.com]), the emergence of these currencies that trade on pure technical patterns is something that must be embraced if it

    • Re:As a Market Lover (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Forgefather ( 3768925 ) on Thursday December 11, 2014 @09:44AM (#48572203)

      I'm like you in that I don't like the idea of a self regulated currency, but I don't find Bitcoin to be a problem because I have always looked at it as an investment similar to a stock or a bond. When you buy a Bitcoin you are buying the chance that they will become more valuable in the future. Funny enough the people who have made the most money from Bitcoin are the exchange traders and early adopters.

      I think as long as you look at Bitcoin as a commodity and transactions like a barter or trade system then there isn't much of a problem when both parties understand that they are trading in goods not currency. As far as an actual currency it is far too volatile. You can't have a currency that changes value significantly in the time it takes to get to the grocery store.

      • by artlu ( 265391 )

        I don't see a digitally created currency the same way as I would view a commodity such as gold or oil. The creation itself seems troubled with the possibility of fraud. The unregulated trading of the currency is also open to fraud. As someone who was charged with fraud and conspiracy, it alarms me.

        • by genghisjahn ( 1344927 ) on Thursday December 11, 2014 @09:55AM (#48572281) Homepage
          We should stay with current systems that keep us safe from all fraud and irregularities.
        • by grnbrg ( 140964 )

          The creation itself seems troubled with the possibility of fraud.

          Do some reading. Bitcoin is absolutely uncounterfeitable.

          Unfortunately, there have been more than a few fraudulent exchanges, which has more to do with the involvement of amateurs than anything else. The marketplace is improving fast.

          • by Anonymous Coward

            Is under the control of a Cartel, and then the possibility exists to 'fork' the bitchain and take over that other 40 percent of coins.

            Go look at the pie charts of bitcoin mining. The potential is already there.

            • by itzly ( 3699663 )
              When that happens, bitcoins become worthless, and that 40% becomes nothing. So, while in theory that's possible, who would be stupid enough to actually do it, if instead they could just be mining 25 btc every 15 minutes ?
          • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

            by artlu ( 265391 )

            I don't believe that it is absolutely uncountefeitable. I did read the Wiki on it, but I don't think that any item digitally-based is safe. We are on /. after all ;)

            • by itzly ( 3699663 )
              Your money in the bank is also digitally based. And the very popular credit cards are based on secret numbers that are plainly printed on a piece of plastic that we carelessly hand to strangers.
              • by artlu ( 265391 )

                yet, the money in the bank is subject to federal depository insurance, and the credit cards have measures in place for fraud.

            • > I don't believe that it is absolutely uncountefeitable. I did read the Wiki on it, but I don't think that any item digitally-based is safe. We are on /. after all ;)

              Then you don't understand the central invention in bitcoin, an accounting ledger that is public and cannot be altered. In order to counterfeit some bitcoins, you would have insert a transaction into everyone's copy of the ledger, and also have a valid checksum (hash). Without it, every copy of the software will reject the data as invalid.

          • But we have seen GHash hit the 51% mark a few times already...oh but we trust them not to do anything malicious.
        • It is very difficult to forge a Bitcoin, and the only only known way (controlling a 50%+ share of the entire pool) can easily be discovered. If it is discovered that Bitcoins are being forged then the value tanks and the people who were forging them lose big money so I think its fairly safe on that front. Certainly less likely that the banking industry crashing the economy again.

          As for treating it like a commodity there is a very good reason for that as well because just like gold Bitcoin has no inherent

      • by Jeremi ( 14640 )

        You can't have a currency that changes value significantly in the time it takes to get to the grocery store.

        Agreed, but the hope/expectation is that as the user base grows, the valuation will become less volatile, making it more useful as a currency.

      • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 )

        The thing that scares me about Bitcoin is that a significant portion of the total bitcoins that can exist are out of circulation in a few private, anonymous, hands. One of these early adopters could easily crash the whole market, now, or just as easily in a possible future where bitcoin is a major currency.

        Governments can crash their currencies but they have a pretty big incentive not to. Bitcoin, no matter how big it gets, could crash just because anonymous18283@hotmail.com decides he wants to cash out and

        • by Holi ( 250190 )

          Exactly, the first million or so bitcoins have never been in circulation, why are the creators just sitting on them?

        • Governments can crash their currencies but they have a pretty big incentive not to. Bitcoin, no matter how big it gets, could crash just because anonymous18283@hotmail.com decides he wants to cash out and buy New Zealand.

          Wall Street had every incentive to keep status quo intact, yet they crashed worldwide economy anyway. As long as you'll have markets, you'll have people who "win" and get into position to cause havoc. It's the very carrot/stick combo that drives capitalism and gives it efficiency: if you w

        • How did you figure my bitcoin handle? And no, I prefer to buy Icelands!

    • by Anonymous Coward

      The IMF, the Fed, the BoE (etc) may all be officially independent but this independence is a farce for at least two reasons:
      i) the buy government 'assets'
      ii) they create money (not currency) out of thin air at the behest of the government

      We constantly have this debate. Read: digital records over paper records for finance; digital records over paper records for medicine, digital (publicly auditable!) records for money over the records kept by an old boy's club.

      I don't see how digital currency is mechanically

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Fraud - they've just added a new app called "OpenBazaar" that adds consumer protection. The funds are held in escrow until either (A) both seller and buyer agree the deal is done, or (B) the escrow investigates the dispute and makes a ruling (like PayPal or VISA). More advanced forms of consumer protection are forthcoming, all opt-in and competing with one another.

      Manipulation - this will have to go down naturally as market depth increases. There is unfortunately no way to prevent manipulation entirely, bec

    • Re:As a Market Lover (Score:5, Informative)

      by genghisjahn ( 1344927 ) on Thursday December 11, 2014 @10:13AM (#48572455) Homepage
      I don't know that BTC will ultimately prove to be the way to go, but I do think something like that will catch on in a big way. If you haven't seen it, Andreas M. Antonopoulos's video about BitCoin is pretty informative. https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]
    • > I just hope it does not become publicly accepted. Can someone help convince me that bitcoin is the way to go?

      Modern money, like the US Dollar, is just how we keep track of who owes something to others, or is owed something. Mostly the tracking is via bank ledgers, but occasionally it is on paper (as in paper money). Almost every dollar in existence represents a debt, either treasury bonds, mortgages, or other bank loans. Dollars make the debt easily traded in convenient units.

      Bitcoin also uses a led

  • by schlachter ( 862210 ) on Thursday December 11, 2014 @09:57AM (#48572295)

    With 3rd party services like BitPay, everyone can update their services/site to accept BitCoin with no additional risk, right? No real risk, yet, big political statement.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Steve Ballmer IS Satoshi Nakamoto!

  • I read this as "microsoft quietly starts accepting blood as payment". Need morning blood coffee!

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