Sunday, June 8, 2014

Apple’s update for Virtual Currency Transaction

Apple’s update for Virtual Currency Transaction
Apple has now updated its iOS App Store guideline enabling software developers to include virtual currency transactions in their application like Bitcoin which had previously been banned.

Apple had previously opposed Bitcoin and other crypto currencies and Bitcoin wallet apps inclusive of Blockchain which had been removed from its App Store leading in a backlash from bitcoin community.

Videos on social site Reddit started appearing with displeased bitcoin supporters destroying Apple devices due to the banning of Blockchain and a subsequent petition with a move to reinstate the wallet app was supported with 6,000 signatures.

Nic Cary, CEO of Blockchain responded to a query on Twitter with regards to when a new app for the iOS would be expected to which he responded saying that it would be as soon as Apple re-approves the same and Tim Cook would get to know that Blockchain is wanted back in the App Store.

In Compliance with all State & Federal Laws

The update which was issued recently states that the `app 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’.

Apple had not specified which virtual currencies had been approved though many are presuming that Bitcoin would be included as it is the most widely used virtual currency presently.

The policy change is considered as a significant shift for Apple and the company did not initially consider the use of virtual currencies within its application but had eliminated a number of Bitcoin wallet apps from its App Store.

Apple had offered no explanation for this and no option to appeal but rather stated that the removal was due to an unresolved issue.

Virtual Currencies Built on Shared Software

The removed apps, Blockchain which had been available on the App Store for two years had been downloaded more than 120,000 times and after Apple had removed the app, several people had posted videos of themselves destroying their iPhones.

Gliph developers Rob Banagale had also told Bloomberg that he was planning to submit a revised version of his app to Apple which would restore its ability in sending and receiving payments in bitcoins.

Virtual currencies are built on shared software which mines or generates coins carrying out complicated calculations operated on computers and are not backed by any government of central bank. They are bought and sold on a peer to peer network independent of any central control.

Bitcoin a more Interesting Value Proposition 

It was reported that satellite TV operator Dish Network would be accepting Bitcoin payment from customers from the third quarter and would be joining companies like and Zynga for virtual currency acceptance.

Cary was of the opinion that as a result of Apple’s treatment of bitcoin app in its Apps Store, it would be playing catch-up with rival mobile operating systems and developers would not be quick in embracing the iOS platform.

It is unknown whether the outcome of this will lead Apple to focus on its own virtual currency but Cary states that there would be nothing innovative about iMoney and bitcoin seems to be a more interesting value proposition.

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