JOHANNESBURG – You can now use bitcoin to buy airtime and data.
Bitcoin exchange BitX has begun selling mobile airtime and data for South African mobile networks.
For now the facility is only available via the BitX website, but the company says it’ll be adding the functionality to its Android and iOS apps soon.
BitX was founded in February 2013 and is headquartered in Singapore.
The company has offices in Cape Town and Jakarta.
In addition to serving as an exchange between bitcoin and fiat currencies, BitX provides bitcoin wallet services and provides an API that developers can use to build support for bitcoin into their apps and services.
The company’s merchant services make it possible for businesses to accept bitcoin as a means of payment while being paid in a conventional currency of their choice and being insulated from exchange rate volatility.
A year ago BitX partnered with payment gateway PayFast to enable PayFast customers, which include some 30,000 South African websites, to accept bitcoin as payment.
The addition of the new airtime and data facility can’t hurt the uptake of the cryptocurrency, the success of which hedges largely on retailers finding ways to accept it and consumers actually making use of it.