“If I could speak on behalf of Prague and the Czech Republic, we would have seen the acceptance of cryptocurrencies expand. Previously the regions that accepted Bitcoin had begun to accept Litecoin or Ethereum. There are even ATMs that offer Bitcoin cash. But despite this, Bitcoin still dominates, and it is the first cryptocurrency to be implemented. “
The increase in competitive coin acceptances not only attests to the growing public familiarity with cryptocurrencies, but also has led to the proliferation of payment services tailored to businesses. Coinbase Commerce, for example, launched in February, allows merchants to accept payments in multiple digital currencies. In most cases, however, the number of merchants that accept payment from multiple cryptocurrencies is still in the minority.
This shows once again that if you want to pay only for one cryptocurrency in this world, your best bet is Bitcoin.
Coinbase Commerce supports payments in multiple cryptocurrencies (Ethereum, Bitcoin, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash)
There is also some less direct evidence that Bitcoin is more popular than other cryptocurrencies. In April 2017, for example, the University of Cambridge published a global benchmark study on cryptocurrencies, the first systematic study of alternative payment systems. Although it doesn’t focus solely on consumer payments to companies, it found that 86 percent of companies that pay in cryptocurrencies use Bitcoin as the main cross-border payment.
Such payments cover a variety of uses, from international remittances to business-to-business payments and business services, so there is no direct evidence that Bitcoin is accepted by 86% of companies that allow customers to pay in cryptocurrencies. Still, they point out that Bitcoin is the cryptocurrency most commonly used to pay, which in turn suggests that anyone who wants to buy cryptocurrencies would be better advised to hold some bitcoins, as the current environment is better suited to using Bitcoin for payments than any other digital currency.
But this will not last long. In addition to the increasingly popular cryptocurrency payment service, countries have taken a number of measures that will promote the more widespread use of cryptocurrencies for payments. In South Korea, Bithumb, the country’s largest exchange, has been partnering with a number of online platforms, including WeMakePrice and Yeogi Eottae. Under its terms, the platform will be able to accept payments from multiple currencies, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash and ICON, and Bithumb is also working to promote such agreements in other parts of South Korea.
A handful of U.S. states are also considering legislation that would allow citizens to pay taxes and licensing fees in cryptocurrencies. In May, Arizona passed a bill that would “examine whether taxpayers can pay their income tax liabilities by using payment gateways such as Bitcoin, Litecoin or any other cryptocurrency.” In late February and April, Georgia and Illinois introduced very similar bills, and although neither bill passed, their acceptance of cryptocurrencies would greatly boost the cryptocurrency (not just Bitcoin) as a means of payment.
While Bitcoin is far ahead in terms of merchant acceptance, it doesn’t necessarily make it the most “useful” cryptocurrency, at least when considering its inherent technical features.