260,000+ Japanese Retail Stores Will Begin Accepting Bitcoin Payments
The process of enabling over 260,000 Japanese retail stores with a Bitcoin-ready Point of Sale application has begun. Recruit Lifestyle, one of Japan’s leading retail corporations is paving the way for wide-scale adoption with their new app.
Recruit lifestyle announced in April that they had partnered with Japanese Bitcoin exchange, Coincheck to build an app that would enable Bitcoin payments in stores all over the country.
The app is called, "Mobile Payment for Air Regi," and will be implemented in several phases. The first phase is to enable 334 eyeglass stores called Megane Super, with the app on July 10. This is big news for the Japanese since just a few days ago, legislators removed the 8% consumption tax previously held on cryptocurrencies.
The company expects its user base to increase, especially from Europe and the U.S. This new form of payment will improve convenience and lower costs included in exporting goods.
Besides the benefits to the clients, and the digital currency itself, the stores are also expecting increased business from tech-savvy tourists who seek out these innovative stores to spend Bitcoin in retail shops that once took only cash and card.
In total, over 260,000 stores from drugstores to fast food restaurants will use this app that is now ready to accept Bitcoin alongside traditional methods. The app will be as simple as using a smart phone to scan a barcode, which will pull from the customers wallet and be sent to the retailer.
Recruit Lifestyle and Coincheck aren't the only companies implementing Bitcoin payments. There are already over 5,000 Bitcoin accepting stores in Japan with even more on the way.
The digital currency ecosystem is flourishing and companies all over the world are trying to innovate systems to get involved. Japan isn't the only country getting involved either. Recently, Burger King's Russian wing announced they would accept Bitcoin payments by the end of the summer. In Germany, they're beginning to follow the trend as well. German fast food delivery portal Lieferando has recently started accepting Bitcoin for orders.
The path to mass adoption will be long and treacherous, however if this tells us anything, it's that we are on our way with no signs of slowing down.