U.S. Telecom Giant AT&T Joins Hands With BitPay to Accept Cryptocurrency Payments

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by Bhushan Akolkar · 3 min read
U.S. Telecom Giant AT&T Joins Hands With BitPay to Accept Cryptocurrency Payments
Photo: Mike Mozart / Flickr

In an effort to expand its services to its users using cryptocurrencies, AT&T will now allow paying bills in crypto with BitPay acting as its payment processor.

Cryptocurrencies continue to penetrate global markets with its increasing adoption across different industries. The U.S. telecom giant AT&T has recently announced to accept bill payments in cryptocurrencies. In the official press release on Thursday, May 23, AT&T announced its partnership with crypto payments platform BitPay.

BitPay is a popular crypto processing platform converting crypto tokens to fiat and used by over 20,000 businesses. However, is probably the first U.S. telecom company to accept crypto payments through BitPay. Kevin McDorman, vice president, AT&T Communications Finance Business Operations, expressed optimism on offering crypto payments services. McDorman said:

“We’re always looking for ways to improve and expand our services. We have customers who use cryptocurrency, and we are happy we can offer them a way to pay their bills with the method they prefer.”

AT&T Blockchain Projects

AT&T has always been open to bringing new developments in its sector using blockchain and crypto solutions. Last year in September 2018, AT&T unveiled several blockchain solutions by partnering with IBM and Microsoft Azure. The company said:

“We’re combing our edge-to-edge capabilities with blockchain technology. Our Internet of Things (IoT) solutions add automation and critical monitoring capabilities. AT&T’s consulting team can design, deploy and manage blockchain solutions.”

Besides, the telecom giant also plans to leverage blockchain solutions to bring higher transparency in supply chain operations. In December 2018, AT&T filed a patent with the USPTO for a blockchain-based social media mapping system. The patent describes that the system will allow AT&T to gather the social media transaction data of its subscribers. The patent notes:

“The social media history map platforms described herein may take advantage of the immutable and permanent nature of blockchain records to store, and provide access to, data representing online transactions that occur on multiple social media applications.”

However, it notes that the content creator shall be getting the ultimate ownership of their data. The patent document reads:

“Instead of passing ownership of blocks or data between users, a social media account owner maintains primary ownership of his or her online transaction data. What passes from the social media account owner to other users of the social media history map service, such as followers of the social media account owner, is a notion of elevated visibility rights.”

Increasing Cryptocurrency Adoption

A number of global companies are warming up to the idea of crypto payments. The major reason behind crypto adoption is instant transactions across the globe with utmost transparency. Banking giants like JPMorgan and tech giants like Facebook are planning to bring their own crypto payment solutions this year in the market.

Besides big organizations, crypto start-ups are working to bring solution and push crypto spendings in daily life. Recently, crypto exchange Gemini partnered with crypto startup Flexa to facilitate digital currency spending at popular retail outlets. The new partnership allows Flexa to spend five popular cryptocurrencies at locations like WholeFoods, Bakin Robbins, Nordstrom, and over 30,000 retail outlets.

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