Once a mere novelty, Bitcoin debit cards are getting smarter and their providers are stepping up to ensure their products have a tangible competitive advantage.
Like many sectors of the Bitcoin industry, the consumer payment product market is both growing and innovating at breakneck speed.
In a little under three years, Bitcoin spending at consumer level has gone from an online-only niche to offering a full range of financial products, with apps and fiat-tied options, such as gift vouchers, flooding the market.
More recently, focus has shifted to convenience rather than simply having an extension of one’s Bitcoin wallet in a familiar form. So-called Bitcoin debit cards have led the way in providing both new and experienced Bitcoin consumers with a crossover tool for the kind of transactions otherwise only possible with a fiat-based product.
The advantages of Bitcoin debit cards have been well-publicized, and range from removing the headache of finding Bitcoin-accepting merchants, to easing the amount new users need to understand about Bitcoin in order to transact successfully and efficiently.
Now, however, trends are continuing to evolve. As part of a concurrent industry inclination toward crossover services, operators such as Bitcoin exchanges and wallets are venturing into the point-of-sale arena.