What is believed to be the first retail transaction using the global digital currency “Bitcoin” took place in Cardigan this week.
Tom Wells of New Image Bicycles, Cardigan received a payment of 0.19 BTC (Bitcoins) for bicycle parts costing @pound;14.99 from Jeremy Clulow of Webs Wonder Design based in Newcastle Emlyn.
The payment was made directly over the Internet between “wallets” on their respective computers without the use of a bank or third party.
Jeremy Clulow said:
“This purchase from Tom is my first retail transaction using Bitcoin and I’m really excited by it. Since the financial crash of 2008, many of us have lost confidence in “fiat money” currencies (fiat means “let there be”) such as the Pound and Dollar which can be printed endlessly by governments and which lose value as a result.
“Bitcoins on the other hand are hard to create and the supply is limited, so they are more like gold. Unlike gold however, Bitcoin can be used to pay for goods and services almost instantly anywhere in the world and without transaction charges. The money is sent directly from one computer to another using so called “peer to peer” software. The only way transactions can be blocked or prevented is to shut down the Internet completely.
“Bitcoin was invented in 2009 and so far 11 million have been created or “mined” by powerful computers carrying out trillions of computations in a process called “hashing”. The fixed design of Bitcoin mean that the rate at which coins can be created gets progressively slower and only 21 million coins can ever be mined over 130 years ending in 2140. The diminishing creation rate has resulted in the currency being nicknamed “digital gold”.
“It is early days for Bitcoin, and some people believe it will collapse, but I’m confident that as more businesses begin to accept them as payment, it will grow and develop worldwide.”
Tom Wells said:
“Anyone can download the Bitcoin wallet software and either buy Bitcoin online (currently exchange rate is £80 per Bitcoin) or receive payments in Bitcoin for goods and services. At the moment the Bitcoin exchange rate is fluctuating just like gold, so I need to do a calculation before agreeing a price in Bitcoin, but eventually I hope that calculation won’t be necessary.
“Bitcoin looks like the future for a small independent business like mine – it’s very secure, and unlike VISA, Mastercard or PayPal, there are no transaction fees that I have to pay to a third party to make sure I’m getting the money.
“I’m not sure whether I would carry out a large transaction yet in Bitcoin – although many people are already doing so – but I’m looking forward to using Bitcoin more and more in face-to-face as well as online transactions as it gains in recognition.”
New Image Bicycles
Webs Wonder Design
↑ Back to top ↑