Visa Europe and Satoshipay Partner for New Micropayment Initiative

Executive Brief

With the use of ad blockers ever rising, the internet is looking to find a payment model that works in the interests of all, and one that has long been discussed is the concept of micropayments. That is small payments per page or even article view, or per file for data transfer and so on, but this has always run into issues with transaction cost in the fiat monetary system. A new proof of concept from a partnership between Visa Europe and startup SatoshiPay looks to leverage the convenience of Visa payment infrastructure with the advantages of digital currency for small payments to create a viable micropayment solution.

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A partnership between Bitcoin startup SatoshiPay and payment giant Visa Europe looks set to bear fruit with the recent reveal of a micropayment proof of concept that combines the advantages of digital currency with the ubiquity of Visa payments. While the initial idea was publicized earlier on in the year, this is the first time we can see a clear picture of the initiative and what it means for the cryptocurrency industry as a whole.

SatoshiPay founder Meinhard benn outlined the concept, explaining that it involves the integration of the startup’s micropayment technology within the existing card payment structure Visa operates, that allows fast, transparent automated payments between someone’s Visa account and a SatoshiPay wallet. What this does is provide a safe, convenient and streamlined method of purchasing small amounts of bitcoin directly from a debit or credit card. The intention is this payment structure will eventually be expanded to encompass direct debit or direct bank transfer payments as well.

While this initial proof of concept design is intended to showcase the possibilities of machine to machine micro transactions, the possibilities for web content payments are obvious too. Such micro payments would be easy to incorporate to charge per view of a page or article, something that the news media are struggling with commodifying via traditional means at the moment.

It has been said many times, but easing the entry into digital currency ownership is always a benefit for the wider industry, and this one is no different. With such a huge payment provider in Visa involved, this could be an incredible opportunity for the digital currency industry as it moves to maximize the advantages of cryptocurrency within payment systems. Micropayments seem to be tailor made for digital currencies, and with ease of transition between fiat and digital currencies from this endeavor, the possibilities for micropayment systems must increase.

The commercial aspects of the internet are, it can be argued, desperate for a solution to the micropayment conundrum, with websites everywhere struggling to balance revenue needs with intrusive advertising that is being roundly rejected by audiences through ad blockers. Micropayments per page or article is a possible solution that suits the majority of content providers and consumers.

Author: Thomas Moore

Thomas Moore is a writer and researcher with a love for the eclectic, family and the world we inhabit. He spends his spare time photographing the varied wildlife that surrounds us daily and contemplating why Firefly never made it past season one.

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