Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Bit Buzz Daily: our roundup of bitcoin news on the web

Here's our latest look at what's new and interesting in the world of digital currency:

We always like to start off on a positive note (if we can) so this article by Jennifer Booton on Fox Business ticks the box. With just a month lapsed since  the Silk Road bust, she notes its recent rally means bitcoin's future is a little more certain. An article that takes into account the hurdles bitcoin still faces but with expert opinion still favouring bitcoin's longer term future.

It’s only been a month since authorities took down Silk Road and a week since Liberty Reserve pleaded guilty to money laundering, but bitcoin’s recent rally signals one thing for certain: the digital currency has no intention of dying out anytime soon.
The very volatile bitcoin traded at fresh highs last week, closing on Friday at an all-time high of $349.99, according to Mt. Gox, the world’s largest bitcoin exchange.
“I continue to think bitcoin is the most fascinating finance story of 2013 and I think it will continue that way through 2014,” said Nick Colas, chief market strategist at ConvergEx.

One aspect of bitcoin, that is not talked about as much as its value as a currency or commodity, are the technological possibilities within the bitcoin protocol.
In this video, posted by Mike Schmidt, Liz Lumley of Finextra, interviews Richard Brown, executive architect at IBM, about some of the potential yet to explore. Some of it is quite fascinating. Will your fridge talk to your washing machine in a few years' time?

Watch it here

Now here's something that might make you sit up in surprise, but the Bank of America has written a pro-bitcoin article, suggesting it as an alternative to small businesses as a payment option. Iris Dorbian's article looks at several case studies and offers tips on how a business could implement a bitcoin POS...

To Adam Sah, co-founder and CEO of Best Friend Wholesale & Mercantile, a San Francisco-based specialty grocery store chain, offering the digital currency bitcoin as an alternative payment solution for customers seemed like a no-brainer. Having started in Silicon Valley, where he once worked as a senior engineer at search giant Google, Sah is well-apprised of breaking trends in the tech world.

With this in mind, Sah began accepting bitcoin as a payment option to customers last spring. Though he freely acknowledges the deep ambivalence that greets bitcoin ("some people think it's a scam while others think it's the future of money"), Sah estimates that “two or three” customers per day make bitcoin transactions at one of his stores. Despite this low number, Sah hails bitcoin as a cost-effective alternative to cash and credit. And although bitcoin transactions can be slow due to its still nascent technology, it is free.

Read more here

The latest bitcoin exchange on the scene is heading in a slightly different direction. Ryan Lawler writing for Tech Crunch says itBit has just raised several million dollars to launch an exchange for institutional investors. It will be interesting to see if veering away from the more consumer-focused exchange model will provide more liquidity in the marketplace.

There are a number of Bitcoin exchanges out there today, but a new startup called itBit hopes to legitimize the market by providing bank-like security and compliance.
This newest Bitcoin exchange has raised $3.25 million in a funding round co-led by Canaan Partners and RRE Ventures, with participation from Liberty City Ventures, as well angel investors such as Jay W. Jordan II and Ben Davenport. To date, it’s raised $5.5 million.

Read more

Now for something that's just a bit fun. Want to check out where bitcoins are being exchanged? The Fiatleak site shows a real time map analysis of bitcoins exchanged by currency. Check it out for a visual representation of money leaking out the fiat system!

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