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Accept payment in Bitcoins

Patrick O'Laughlin
suggested this on March 27, 2013, 15:25

Bitcoin has seen dramatic growth over the last few months.  Major sites are now accepting Bitcoins as payment for goods and services.  These include Wordpress.com, Namecheap.com, and OKCupud.com, with more jumping on board every day.  There are many advantages to Bitcoin for merchants.  Please add support for Bitcoins!

 

http://www.weusecoins.com

http://www.bitpay.com

http://www.coinbase.com

 

Please let me know if I can answer any questions about Bitcoin.

 

Thanks for your consideration!

 

Comments

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Patrick O'Laughlin

Also check out http://www.bitcoin.org

March 27, 2013, 15:25
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Bruce Osborne
Ting Army

I expect Ting might consider that if Sprint & Verizon can be convinced to accept Bitcoin as payment from Ting.Verizon is a voice roaming partner for Ting.

Otherwise, Ting would need to finance your Bitcoin experiment with US Currency to pay Sprint & Verizon for your services used.

March 27, 2013, 15:29
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Patrick O'Laughlin

Actually, the BitPay service allows the merchant to receive their payments in their local currency by direct deposit on a daily basis.  Ting would never have to touch the Bitcoins if they didn't want to.

 

https://bitpay.com/bitcoin-direct-deposit

March 27, 2013, 16:34
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Patrick O'Laughlin

Coinbase provides a similar service, allowing merchants to cash out their Bitcoins into USD the next day.  https://coinbase.com/merchants

March 27, 2013, 16:35
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Andrew Costen
Ting

For the time being we'll be sticking with our current billing options, though anything's possible in the future.

March 27, 2013, 18:57
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Paul McElroy

This would be really nice.  Plus I think you'd be the first mobile provider to offer service payable in Bitcoin.  The Bitcoin community has been waiting for such a service too, so there's that.  Also, Andrew, you'd be able to offer payment in Bitcoin, but receive payment in USD through a service like Bitpay (they're currently the Paypal of the Bitcoin world).

You should make an intern investigate! Ha ha.

May 2, 2013, 19:36
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Cindy Butler

I know this thread is old, but it would be amazing if you guys would consider accepting bitcoin. Alternatively, many people who use bitcoin will buy gift cards from Gyft using bitcoins...

November 5, 2013, 19:46
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Patrick O'Laughlin

I think you should reconsider this request.  Since the original request was made, bitcoin popularity and adoption has skyrocketed.  Ting could be the first legitimate US cell phone carrier to accept bitcoin. This would result in a massive amount of new business as there is an entire community of thousands of people who are just waiting to pay for their everyday needs with bitcoin.

 

Your recent blog post mentioned T-Mobile replicating some of the things Ting has been doing.  T-Mobile could gain a competitive edge over Ting by accepting bitcoin.  Ting really needs to beat T-Mobile to it.

 

Thanks for reading!

January 23, 2014, 10:28
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Ryan Highland

Ditto what Patrick said. Beat the crap outta t-mobile :)

January 23, 2014, 11:01
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David King
I'll pay with bitcoin, when it's an option. Ting will save money compared to what they're paying now to process a credit card transaction.
January 23, 2014, 11:03
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Marty M
Ting

Accepting bitcoin isn't something we're currently working on, however it might be something we would consider down the road.  We'll keep you posted!

January 23, 2014, 12:20
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Charles Atkins

An ideal solution may be to partner with CoinBase.  One of the difficulties with Bitcoin as a service business is being able to use automatic payments given that the customer has to explicitly initiate the transaction.  By using CoinBase, Ting would be able to automatically bill a user via bitcoin and still recieve USD directly.  Thus Ting would be able to not have to really mess with holding, spending, or using bitcoin, they would simply receive USD directly.  And with only a 1% transaction fee it will likely be a fair amount cheaper than your existing credit card processing.  I'd imagine given how competitive your rates are, there's a fairly slim margin that you already operating on.  This would definitely give you a bit of an edge here.  And of course you could always require that a credit card be on file as well for a backup in case the users BTC transaction is denied.  I would most definitely pay ting with BTC!

February 5, 2014, 16:03
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Monte Ohrt

Consider that if Ting accepted Bitcoins:

1) no 3% credit card fee / chargebacks

2) no personal information to pass/store on a bitcoin transaction (think Target Stores breach)

3) You will rally in quite a few new customers being the first cell phone company accepting Bitcoin

February 6, 2014, 16:07
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John Rilinger

I'm not sure you all at ting.com are ready for the explosive growth and exposure your company would face if you started accepting bitcoin.   With Overstock.com experiencing $120,000 in there first 24 hours of accepting bitcoin, and TigerDirect somewhere around $500,000.  Ting is probably not setup for the kind of growth that would come.  You might have to hire a couple new people to keep up.   Even though payment options could be fully integrated in a day or two, and you'd never even have to touch a bitcoin, the growth potential is really the problem.  You would be making to much money, and stealing to many customers away from the major providers it wouldn't be fair.  Youd be liable for taxes on all that extra income as well. no one wants that. right?

Also with all this animosity lately about apples removal of bitcoin related wallet apps.  I think we a perfect storm of dissatisfied customers ready for a change.  Again, to many people would be ready for your service, i don't think you could handle it.

Perhaps sometime in the future when the 1st mover advantage has passed and all the major providers have already taken steps in that direction, perhaps then, as the fires have died down a bit, you might accept bitcoin as payment so as not to have to many customers and remain a small and manageable force.

Best of luck to Ting!

I'm a big fan!

Starting an account with Ting isn't something I'm currently working on but I'll start an account the minute i get word you accept bitcoin. Probably before then actually,  :)  I really like your service. Looking forward to it.

February 6, 2014, 16:23
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William Swanson

I use Ting because they awesome and quite affordable. However, I would happily switch to another service provider, even if their plans and service are far worse, simply for the ability to pay with Bitcoins. Therefore, I really, really hope Ting becomes the first mobile service provider to accept bitcoins. I love you guys, and don't want to switch.

March 2, 2014, 02:28
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Jesse Winckler

I would like to see Ting be the first phone service accepting Bitcoin. It probably would bring in more users than TIng can handle at the moment. They need to take advantage of this opportunity. Count me in.

April 22, 2014, 12:40
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Matt Drollette

+1 for bitcoin payments. I am sure the guys at coinbase would be more than happy to help with the integration. And as others have said, it can be done with zero exchange risk.

May 3, 2014, 15:19
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Rocky Hinten

What you should probably look into then is using Bitpay to get it into some form of real currency.  Bitpay takes in the bitcoins and then will send a payment in real money to the place you actually want to buy from.  Since Ting uses credit or debit cars for their recurring monthly billing, if you could find a place where you could buy a prepaid debit card, that might be possible to use on Ting then.

May 5, 2014, 11:05
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Brandon Helmuth

I would pay in BC

May 6, 2014, 11:01
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Andy Hauger

I can't wait to be able to pay my Ting bill with Bitcoin! I know many people that would switch based purely on having this payment option, as well.

May 20, 2014, 00:28
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Daniel Dunaway

A competing Sprint MVNO just announced this week they are accepting Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ðogecoin. 

 

Newegg.com and Dell announced this week they are accepting Bitcoin also. 

July 20, 2014, 12:58
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Monte Ohrt

There is no reason for any merchant to not accept Bitcoin (says a Dell computers rep, Dell started accepting Bitcoin last week.) Partnering with someone like Coinbase makes it dead easy. Bitcoins can be instantly converted to USD if you prefer, so ~ 1% fees and no risk.

July 20, 2014, 19:43
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Rocky Hinten

"no reason...to not accept"

"no risk"

Except that there are some reasons and some risk.

July 21, 2014, 12:00
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Monte Ohrt

What reasons and what risk?

July 21, 2014, 12:08
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Paul McElroy

There are no risks to accepting Bitcoin.  The "middle-man" merchant, such as Coinbase, assumes the risks for the client (Ting, in this case).  The client (Ting) simply gets paid through the "middle-man", who converts the Bitcoin directly into cash for them.

All of the risk, then, is on the customer to secure their Bitcoin, which they are most likely doing anyway if they are already holding Bitcoin.

July 21, 2014, 12:40
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Bruce Osborne
Ting Army

Convince Amazon Payments to accept Bitcoin and Ting will have that capability. Ting focuses on cell phone service, not financial services.

July 21, 2014, 14:53
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Rocky Hinten

Paul, if they are instead using a middle-man to take in the Bitcoin and pay them in actual currency, then they are not actually "accepting Bitcoin".  It's like those attention-grabbing headlines about someone who supposedly "bought a Tesla with Bitcoin!".  After a few more days, the details came out.  The car dealer had been offered it and said "no way", so the buyer used Bitpay to convert it to US dollars, which then went to the car dealer, so it wasn't exactly bought with Bitcoin after all.

So if anyone wants to use Bitcoin, they can convert it and put it into a bank account, and then let Ting draft it from a debit card on that account.  And GO!

July 21, 2014, 15:28
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Paul McElroy

Every large company that accepts Bitcoin currently does it through a middleman.  In the future eliminating that middleman may be beneficial, but these companies are obviously not ready for that step yet.

Rocky, not everyone has or wants to maintain a bank account.  Bitcoin is anti-establishment and it plays directly into the desires of people wanting to avoid banks, or debit/credit cards.

July 21, 2014, 15:34
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Monte Ohrt

Of course they are accepting Bitcoin. The consumer uses BTC to purchase the product or service. This also saves the merchant from 3% CC fees and chargebacks, and instead incur a ~1% transaction fee with Coinbase. Whether the BTC is converted to USD is up to the merchant. Either way, they are still accepting Bitcoin as payment from the consumer.

July 21, 2014, 17:39
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Daniel Dunaway
Until more products and services are available for sale for bitcoin they need to be converted to cash to pay bills. But it's coming fast.

As for risks, the biggest right now is coming out of NYC in the form of bit licenses. If you have any customers in NY you are required to keep extensive records of your customers. While I'd prefer this want necessary I suspect ting already collects this.
July 21, 2014, 18:33
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Eric Olson

Dell gets it:

 

“If you’re a retailer, there’s really no reason not to accept Bitcoin at this point” via

 

I would love to pay with bitcoin, and it will save you on credit card fees.  It's a win win!

July 22, 2014, 15:01
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Tyler Masters

I'd love the option to pay in bitcoin! I really dig Ting but if another cell provider started accepting bitcoin and Ting didn't... I'd switch.

October 1, 2014, 11:09
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Matt Whitlock

T-Mobile Poland is now taking payments in Bitcoin[1] and is even giving a 20% bonus to customers who top up using Bitcoin, reflecting the savings that T-Mobile enjoys thanks to Bitcoin's negligible fees and absolutely zero fraud rate. C'mon, Ting. Bitcoin is the future. Be forward-thinking!

[1] http://digitalmoneytimes.com/crypto-news/t-mobile-poland-heyah-now-...

March 11, 2015, 14:05
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John Rilinger

Ting, you might also consider accepting bUSD if you dont like bitcoin volatility and don't want to use a 3rd party payment processor.  bUSD has all the same benefits as bitcoin and maintains the value of US dollars.  You also earn interest on your balance.  More than what you get at a traditional bank. You don't have to trust a 3rd party with you funds either, you're always in control.  Read more about bitAssets and how they work at bitshares.org .  Then you could easily accept any of the other bitAssets as well.  Like Gold, Silver, Oil , Yuan, Yen, Rubles, Canadian dollars, Euros etc. etc... they all earn interest.  I'm not aware of anywhere else that you can earn interest on gold.

 

Also something interesting is ShapeShift.io has made a tool they're calling "shifty button" https://shapeshift.io/tools.html  that essentially allows you to accept any altcoin and it instantly converted to whatever coin you want.  Whether its bUSD or bitcoin it doesn't matter. 

 

If your waiting on a solution for recurring payments, BitShares is also working on a solution to this.  Its not ready yet but its coming. 

 

Thanks for the awesome service!

March 11, 2015, 14:29
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Bruce Osborne
Ting Army

Any additional payment processing adds business overhead & complexity that must be justified.

If this were considered, it would probably be a very low priority. There are many other investments that have better results in growing Ting's business success.

March 12, 2015, 05:16
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Eric Olson

Bruce, I would like to point out that adding bitcoin as a payment option should not require much time at all to do, and literally zero cost (https://bitpay.com/pricing).  Even if you spend a few man hours (at most) to set it up that will be made back by keeping what would otherwise to go processing fees when customers like myself pay our bills in bitcoin.  At this point there is really no reason not to accept bitcoin.  I have referred quite a few business and other organizations over to Bitpay and they have all had a painless and cost free setup.

March 12, 2015, 12:43
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Bruce Osborne
Ting Army

I am not a Ting staffer, so I cannot changes things any more than you can.

You must be naive if you think there would be no business costs. At a minimum, the process would need to be documented and support staff trained.

March 12, 2015, 12:53
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Matt Whitlock
There are a non-trivial number of hardcore Bitcoin users who would strongly consider switching to Ting just to reward Ting's decision to accept Bitcoin.
March 12, 2015, 12:57
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Bruce Osborne
Ting Army

You mean tens of thousands?

Ting is not interested in creating an app for their thousands of Windows clients. I assume it would take at least tens of thousands for them to consider something like this.

March 12, 2015, 13:03
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Eric Olson

I guess I don't know what "Ting Army" means.  There are no dollar costs, like I said a few man hours and I think that could be easily made up be new bitcoin customers, free press for the company, and no longer paying fees on payments from current customers who switch to paying with bitcoin.  Many large business have posted publicly about how easy it was to implement.  Dell, Overstock, Newegg, Microsoft to name a few. 

March 12, 2015, 13:04
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Eric Olson

I think tens of thousands would be very optimistic for the first year, however adding a bitpay button to the checkout is a trivial effort compared to creating an app for a new platform.

March 12, 2015, 13:06
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Bruce Osborne
Ting Army

The Ting Army is just a group of users that helps Ting with some testing. See https://help.ting.com/entries/21691251-Join-the-Ting-Army-

March 12, 2015, 13:14