Valve Corporation, an American video game developer and digital distribution firm is planning to offer bitcoin as a payment option to its global user base of 125 million active users.
According to the readouts from Steam translation servers, the Steam DRM platform will most likely offer bitcoin payments in the upcoming months, with the following BitPay command lines released by the company:
Bitcoin transactions are authorized through the BitPay website. Click the button below to open a new web browser to initiate the transaction.
bitcoin_payment_tips_header Tips for Bitcoin customers
bitcoin_payment_tips_text This process can take up to 60 seconds. To avoid purchasing failures, please do not hit your back button or close the bitpay window before the process is complete.
checkout_payment_method_specific_note_bitcoin Note: Any approved refunds for purchases made with Bitcoin can only be credited to your Steam Wallet
checkout_receipt_pending_bitcoin_long Your purchase is currently in progress and is waiting for confirmation of Bitcoin delivery from BitPay. This process can take several minutes to a few days for confirmation. Valve will send an email receipt to you when payment is received for this purchase. During this time you may continue shopping for other games, though you will not be able to re-purchase any products that are pending in this transaction.
checkout_receipt_pending_bitcoin_text For questions regarding your payment processing status, please contact BitPay
The Steam team’s upcoming integration of the BitPay bitcoin payment processing API will enable users to purchase digital rights to both popular online and offline games including Fallout, Halo, Call of Duty, and Uncharted with bitcoin, which substantially reduces transaction fees and processing time.
Since BitPay and other leading platforms utilize a mechanism called zero-conf, the Steam platform will accept bitcoin payments with zero confirmations from the miners, by having BitPay to check if the transaction is fraudulent. This means that users will be able to purchase games or goods on the Steam platform instantly, with less than US$0.2 in fees.
Currently, Steam offers conventional payment methods including PayPal and credit card processing, which charges over 4% as transaction fees and requires a complex process of transaction settlement. The price range of digital rights to high profile games such as Call of Duty on the Steam platform is fairly high, starting from around US$5 to US$35. 4% of US$35 is US$1.4, 7 times higher than bitcoin payments.
More importantly, accepting bitcoin payments would reduce the amount of transaction fees and merchant fees dealt by Steam. Payments made from debit and credit card accounts for example, charges merchant an extra 2% for almost all payments. Thus, with bitcoin, Steam will save an additional 2% plus other processing fees required by financial platforms including Paypal.
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