Today, we are thrilled to announce that we are officially accepting Bitcoin and Ether as forms of payment at Parallel Tea Co. We have successfully integrated our checkout process with Coinbase Commerce to enable us to accept cryptocurrency payments in a fully decentralized way from anyone around the world. We are excited to now be the first Direct-To-Consumer (DTC) Tea company to be accepting Bitcoin and Ether. We are in good company, with over 8000 other merchants currently accepting cryptocurrency through the Coinbase platform and with millions of others accepting crypto on their own globally.
As a technology first company, we firmly believe that both Bitcoin and Ether represent a quantum leap forward in how value is transferred around the world, especially as we become more hyperconnected and as technology plays a more significant role in our daily lives. Cryptocurrency is a vehicle for economic empowerment and provides anyone around the world with an internet connection the ability to participate in commerce and a new global financial system. We strongly believe that Bitcoin, Ether and other cryptocurrencies will become a more universally accepted form of money in the coming years. We believe that the transition to natively digital forms of money and payments is likely inevitable and will come with more advantages and features than traditional money, including increased speed, lower fees, better access and overall better efficiency.
This announcement from us today represents what we hope will be the first step in a longer journey as we have plans to provide our vendors and suppliers with the option to exclusively be paid in crypto as well. We hope to begin educating them on how to accept payments, on/off ramping their cryptocurrency into their local fiat currency and the general knowledge required to operate with this technology in Q1 of 2021.
What is Bitcoin?
Although it hasn’t been in the public headlines for a couple of years now, you may have recently noticed more news stories about Bitcoin, including its price breaking the $15,000 USD mark, Paypal announcing that it will allow users to buy and sell Bitcoin or Square investing $50 Million of their cash reserves into Bitcoin. Reports of Bitcoin’s death have been greatly over exaggerated and while it hasn’t been in the public eye for a while, the ecosystem that supports it has grown exponentially. For those who are unfamiliar, here is a quick primer on what Bitcoin is…
Bitcoin is a digital currency created in January 2009 by the mysterious and pseudonymous person or group of people know as Satoshi Nakamoto. Bitcoin is a type of money that is completely virtual and is operated by a decentralized network of computers, unlike government-issued currencies. Transactions on the Bitcoin network are made with no middle men and are completely peer-to-peer. There are no physical bitcoins, only balances kept on a public ledger (the network) that everyone has transparent access to. The Bitcoin network is verified by a massive amount of computing power, in fact it is the largest and most robust network in the world. Bitcoins are not issued or backed by any banks or governments.. It’s design is public, nobody owns or controls Bitcoin and everyone can take part. Bitcoins aren’t printed, like dollars, pounds or euros but instead are produced by computers all around the world called “Miners” using free software and held electronically in applications called “wallets”. Bitcoin is often referred to as digital gold as there are a finite amount of Bitcoins that will ever be mined, 21 million. The value of all Bitcoins currently in circulation is estimated to be at $294 Billion. Bitcoin can be bought and sold on various cryptocurrency exchanges globally. To learn more check out Bitcoin.org
What is Ether?
Ether is the cryptocurrency native to the Ethereum Network, a decentralized platform that runs smart contracts. Its creation was proposed in late 2013 and launched in 2015 by Vitalik Buterin, a cryptocurrency researcher and programmer. Generally speaking, Ethereum is a network that lets you send cryptocurrency to anyone for a very small fee. It also powers applications that everyone can use and no one can take down. It's the world's first programmable blockchain. Ethereum builds on Bitcoin's innovation, with some big differences. Both let you use digital money without payment providers or banks. But Ethereum is programmable. This also means Ethereum is for more than payments. Ethereum’s programming languages let you do pretty much anything an advanced programming language would let you do. The potential applications that can be built on top of Ethereum include; financial services, games, identity, computing storage, rights management, prediction markets and more. Ethereum’s programmability spawned a whole ecosystem of tokens and projects in 2017/18, that leveraged the Ethereum network to raise more than $20 Billion in funding through a process called an “Initial Coin Offering” to build new companies and applications. It currently has the biggest and most active developer ecosystem. The value of all Ether currently in circulation is estimated to be at $47 Billion. Like Bitcoin, Ether can be bought and sold on cryptocurrency exchanges. To learn more check out Ethereum.org
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