EspañolTech giant Microsoft has joined the list of companies that now accept the digital currency bitcoin as payment. The California-based company will now allow their app store customers to use bitcoin to add credit to their accounts.
Beginning last week, bitcoin can be used to purchase apps, games, and other digital content in Windows, Windows Phone, Xbox Games, Xbox Music, and Xbox Video stores, according to the new payment policy released by the company.
“The use of digital currencies such as bitcoin, while not yet mainstream, is growing beyond the early enthusiasts,” said Microsoft Vice President Eric Lockard. “We expect this growth to continue and allowing people to use bitcoin to purchase our products and services now allows us to be at the front edge of that trend.”
For the time being, bitcoin payments are only available in the United States. Microsoft did not indicate whether or not the option to pay with bitcoin will extend to other countries.
The company did, however, specify that money will not be reimbursed in bitcoin in case of returns. To clarity how these transactions will work, Microsoft added a support page that details how the virtual currency can be used with their user accounts.
For Franco Amati, co-founder of the Buenos Aires Bitcoin Embassy, Microsoft’s adoption of bitcoin demonstrates how the digital currency has “established itself as a means of payment, especially in countries with heavy financial regulations or poor banking systems.”
“That a company the size of Microsoft has begun using [bitcoin] as a payment alternative provides greater security to those who, because of the technical complexity of bitcoin, are not sure how to use it or how it works,” he told the PanAm Post.
Microsoft now joins other companies such as Ebay, PayPal, and Braintree, which adopted bitcoin as a means of payment earlier this year.