Announced Monday, clients of BitPay will be allowed to natively accept Ethereum (ETH) payments for online goods and services henceforth. A press release from BitPay revealed that this integration with allow ” wallet users [to] be able to store and use Ethereum in a BitPay wallet and BitPay Prepaid Visa Card holders can top-up debit cards.” BitPay CEO Stephen Pair called the integration of ETH the “next logical choice” in a press comment.
Vitalik Buterin of Ethereum expressed his excitement for the integration by saying that this move “opens up a new world of possibilities for the Ethereum ecosystem”, especially in terms of building real-world use cases for this asset class.
Previously, the World Bank issued a similar blockchain bond but used a private version of ethereum. French lender Societe Generale issued a bond earlier this year on the public ethereum network but said nothing about cash on-ledger.
An executive of Santander’s digital banking initiatives later lauded the pilot transaction, claiming that he sees value in settling bonds on public blockchains like Ethereum.
This comes as Ethereum has seen a growing network usage metric. Just look to the chart from Etherscan below, which shows that for the first time in about forever, the network’s utilization (defined by average gas per block used over the gas limit per block) has consistently trended in the 90s.
BitPay Under Fire
While this move marks a positive step forward for Ethereum lovers, BitPay has been under fire as of late.
Last week, Tom Grundy of the crowd-funded Hong Kong Free Press (HKFP) called out BitPay. In the tweetstorm that can be seen below, the journalist wrote that funds from Bitcoin donations being held are a result of the use of SWIFT and “horrible customer service” and “abysmal communication” on BitPay’s end. Grundy, accentuating his concerns, even wrote:
“Never use BitPay, folks. Truly the worst experience you can imagine – poor reputation, abysmal communication, horrible customer service, *very* high fees. Almost any alternative will be better. I’ve sent you & Steve a LinkedIn message. Am ready to go to war with publicity and legal action – sort it out guys!”