Author Topic: AT&T began accepting bitcoin for payments this year  (Read 697 times)

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AT&T began accepting bitcoin for payments this year
« on: June 09, 2019, 06:46:02 PM »

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In a major boost for adoption, telecom giant at&t began accepting bitcoin for payments this year.

How AT&T Began Accepting Bitcoin

BitPay first began discussing bitcoin payments with AT&T about a year and a half ago.

    “We stayed in touch and pitched them on different ideas about how they can accept bitcoin,” Mr. Singh told CCN.

Ultimately, the telecommunications behemoth decided to move forward with bitcoin about six months ago, even as the bitcoin price cratered amid a brutal market downturn.

    “They had been asked by customers if they could pay in bitcoin,” says Mr. Singh. “So, they realized they had enough demand for it.” When a big brand decides to accept bitcoin, it’s a big deal operationally.

    “The decision goes to the top, the CEO has to sign off on it, and then the media gets involved,” said Singh. “It can’t just be one analyst that wants to accept bitcoins. AT&T talked about it internally and they said they want to do this. Once a big company like AT&T approves something, they assign people to it and get stuff done.”

Even the CEO Had to Sign Off on Bitcoin Payments
bitcoin crypto

Most people don’t realize how complicated a process it really is for a Fortune 500 company like AT&T to pull the trigger on bitcoin payments. | Source: AFP PHOTO / PHILIPPE LOPEZ

What’s the process like when after a big brand like AT&T chooses to accept bitcoin?

    “The legal team looks at it,” Singh explains. “They look at government regulation and see that you’re allowed to make a bitcoin payment. Then the finance and tax team jump in. They ask, ‘How does that affect our taxes? Do we have to hold bitcoin? Does the finance have to account for this differently than a credit card transaction?’”

Once they realize they do not need to hold the bitcoin, thus minimizing their risk, they’re more open to accepting crypto payments.

    “Then, it’s on to marketing,” says Singh. “They ask, ‘Is there a marketing angle?’ Then they do testing on how it works as far as the payment flow.’”

Once implemented, AT&T, which charges BitPay’s 1% transaction fee back to the consumer, didn’t think there would be much media attention.

    “They thought they would make a statement and that’d be it,” said Singh. “They’re surprised by all the attention they got. It’s just another payment option to them, like adding Apple Pay or Google Pay.”