Valve is ending support for Steam purchases in Bitcoin

07 December, 2017, 02:16 | Author: Oscar Goodwin
  • Citing volatile value, Steam drops Bitcoin support

One of those companies is Valve, which up until today accepted Bitcoin as a payment method on Steam.

Along with Bitcoin's skyrocketing valuation, transaction fees charged to customers have also risen dramatically, from the 20 cents when the company enabled Bitcoin support two years ago to $20 last week, Valve said in a blog post. With Valve unable to control these blockchain-linked costs (passed on from third-party Bitpay), the company anxious that it was leading to "unreasonably high costs for purchasing games when paying with Bitcoin" (though apparently these are costs Bitcoin users as a whole have been willing to shoulder of late).

"In the past few months we've seen an increase in the volatility in the value of Bitcoin and a significant increase in the fees to process transactions on the Bitcoin network", Valve said in a post on Steam.

Valve explained that the value of Bitcoin is only guaranteed for a certain period of time, and if a transaction is not completed with the time frame, the amount of Bitcoin needed for the transaction can change.

At present, however, Steam is focusing on working with customers to resolve any pending issues related to underpayments or transaction fees. There are some major companies, such as Microsoft and DISH, accepting bitcoin payment, but few others have followed suit.

Valve said that volatility can complicate purchases made on Steam, a platform and social network for purchasing computer games and software. Being able to load "Steam Wallets" with bitcoin would be beneficial for people in China, Brazil, and India who may lack "traditional payment options like credit cards", BitPay said at the time. After giving customers a payment time window of several hours for their transaction to confirm on the Bitcoin blockchain, the value of the coin could have already significantly changed.

Steam has dropped support for Bitcoin.

For Valve, the answer to its Bitcoin problem is no more Bitcoin.

When Valve first started accepting Bitcoin as an option for Steam purchases last April, the cryptocurrency was trading around $450.

Steam described how the rapid rise and fall of Bitcoin versus the USA dollar has impacted users trying to buy games with the cryptocurrency. This in turn runs the risk of under/overpayment again should the value of Bitcoin change and can result in yet another transaction needing to be performed.

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