Upingme now accepts Bitcoin as a means of payment to buy SMS credits. In fact it is the first method we have chosen to accept payment.
We were able to do this by simply downloading the free Bitcoin client that enables anyone to accept and send Bitcoins, and some other free software that allows us to connect our user accounts to Bitcoin.
Clack clack clack on the keyboard and in a few hours, we had a fully functioning Bitcoin system rolled out.
Bitcoin is a very good fit for a service like Upingme, which keeps its user’s identities shielded with its Magic Numbers . Our users can now buy SMS credits with Bitcoin anonymously, and then send SMS replies to people anonymously who respond to their posts.
It is a very rare thing indeed to be able to take advantage of such a revolutionary piece of software. Not since the advent of Public Key Cryptography and PGP has such an important and beneficial work been unleashed to the public.
To get an idea of just how important this is, hold in your mind the fact that a full one third of all internet traffic is taken up by Bittorrent. One piece of software, boasting a single innovation (splitting a file up into parts and then sharing those parts dynamically between peers) has changed the way people distribute files. Where previously files had to be shared in a linear fashion, Bittorrent introduced a completely new idea and changed everything.
Now superimpose Bitcoin (whose innovation is the Block Chain) on this idea, mixed with the advent of modern cryptography of the type that allows e-commerce as we have known it, and you start to get an idea of just how important Bitcoin is.
Bitcoin is going to transform the financial industry in the same way that the Internet itself has disrupted shopping and publishing; a new model is introduced, and everyone in the world benefits simultaneously. PGP allowed people to whisper in another person’s ear from a great distance. Now Bitcoin allows you to pay someone with cash at a distance, in the same way that you can pay for anything with fiat paper money in ‘real life’.
Its been a long time coming. From the pioneering days of Dr. David Chaum’s Ecash through the other iterations we have waited a long time for Bitcoin. Thank you Satoshi Nakamoto, Gavin Andresen and all the Bitcoin developers for making this dream come true!
Here is a great piece on Bitcoin and its implications.