Bigpoint, an online German game developer, is not making Bitcoin purchases for virtual goods available to its 330 million users.
Much of the company’s model rests on providing free games online then charging for in-game purchases. It already accepts payments from multiple third party payment providers. Some 220 payment services are integrated into Bigpoint’s API.
Bigpoint CEO Khaled Helioui said it made sense for the company to “implement the most popular virtual currency as a payment method.”
Bigpoint will be using BitPay as the payment processor. That company just announced it signed up it’s 10,000th merchant.
The gaming company supports more than 30 languages and can be accessed in more than 150 countries. At first, Bitcoin payment was in a testing period and only available in Germany and the US.
Now, Bigpoint is rolling out Bitcoin payments to everyone.
To incentivize user adoption, users who pay with Bitcoin will get a 5% bonus on whatever virtual goods they buy.
One big advantage Bitcoin offers Bigpoint is that it cuts down on payment processing costs (costs that Helioui calls “obscene.”) In fact, Helioui said he would prefer that all users just pay in Bitcoin because “it removes a lot of hassle, bot for us and them.”
Online gaming is seen as a real area of growth for Bitcoin because, as Bitcoin Foundation’s Marco Santori points out, the currency is very well suited to virtual worlds and a virtual economy.
And from a regulatory perspective, there should be few problems, as users would be not actually spending any legal tender, thus not making Bigpoint susceptible to any rules or licensing requirements for money transmitters.
Bigpoint was founded in 2002 and has since put together a portfolio of more than 70 online games. It is the biggest developer of online games in Europe, and the company has offices in Berlin, San Francisco, London, Paris and Malta.