Apple Inc. Taking Softer Stance On Virtual Currency Including Bitcoin


Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has updated the review guidelines for its App store thereby taking a softer approach it held on the virtual currencies including Bitcoin.

“Apps may facilitate transmission of approved virtual currencies provided that they do so in compliance with all state and federal laws for the territories in which the app functions,” the company noted in its new guidenlines.

Virtual currency a necessity for Apple

Bitcoin’s use would increase once it gets access to iPhone. This is so, because in the U.S., Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is the top manufacturer of smartphones, and according to ComScore Inc., for the quarter ending March, the average market share held by the company is estimated at 41%. Till now, Bitcoin was used on PCs and Android phones for making payments by the users at food carts, restaurants and stores.

Previously, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) had pulled away from the App Store all its apps that were transaction based, which included Blockchain and Coinbase as well. At that time no public statements regarding virtual currencies was made by the company.

“If anything, Apple had more to lose by keeping Bitcoin off the App Store,” said Gil Luria, an analyst at Wedbush Securities Inc. “Bitcoin users were not going to give up Bitcoin—they were giving up on the iPhone.”

This led to a huge outrage among the Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone users as they were not happy with the company’s decision. They showed their protest to the removal of Blockchain by the company from its App Store by destroying their iPhones in numerous different ways and thereafter posting the videos online.

Bitcoin gaining popularity

In few countries, Bitcoin is legal and it’s unclear whether these apps will be permitted in those countries, where there is uncertainty over the status of Bitcoin. The developers, who are submitting the new apps are also testing the rules, and the confirm answers about the permissibility of Bitcoin in most of the countries will be known at a later stage. Uncertainties with the application of Bitcoin are there, but clarity with the guideline that governs Apple’s actions is better.

Bitcoin’s price reached a high of $1000 by last year’s end and in the month of April it plummeted to $360.84. The price rebounded after that and yesterday it is $667.

There are not many retailers and service providers, who use virtual currencies like Bitcoin, but gradually these are gaining acceptance. Dish Network Corp, a satellite TV provider, announced its plans for allowing its subscribers to make payments using Bitcoin.