Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin will be accepted on websites that use the company’s payment platform.
Payments service PayPal announced on Tuesday (30) that it has started allowing consumers in the United States to use their balances in cryptocurrencies to make payments.
With the novelty, digital currencies can be used for purchases on websites around the world, a move that can significantly increase the use of assets in commerce.
Customers who have bitcoin, ether, bitcoin cash and litecoin in PayPal’s digital wallets will be able to convert their assets into fiat currencies at the cash register to make purchases, the company said.
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The service will be available to all of its 29 million merchants in the coming months, the company said.
“This is the first time that you can use cryptocurrencies perfectly in the same way as a credit or debit card within PayPal’s wallet,” President and CEO Dan Schulman told Reuters before a formal announcement.
Checkout with Crypto is based on the ability of PayPal users to buy, sell and maintain cryptocurrencies, which the San Jose, Calif.-Based payments company launched in October.
The offer made PayPal one of the largest traditional financial companies to open its network for cryptocurrencies and helped boost prices for virtual currencies.
Bitcoin’s value has almost doubled since the beginning of this year, driven by increased interest from major financial companies that are betting on greater adoption and see it as a hedge against inflation.
PayPal’s launch comes less than a week after Tesla said it would start accepting bitcoin payments for its cars.
Unlike PayPal transactions in which merchants will receive fiat money, Tesla said it will keep the bitcoin used as payment.
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Although the asset is gaining momentum among major investors, it has not yet become a widespread form of payment, due in part to its continuing volatility.
PayPal expects its service to change so that when settling the transaction in fiat currency, merchants do not take the risk of volatility.
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“We think it’s a transition point where cryptocurrencies are no longer predominantly an asset class that you buy, hold and or sell to become a legitimate source of financing to make transactions in the real world for millions of merchants,” said Schulman.
The company will not charge any transaction fees for payment with cryptocurrency and only one type of currency can be used for each purchase, he said.