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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : January 07, 2014

Zynga tests payment option expansion with BitPay

Social gaming giant Zynga has announced it is testing a new payment option - the virtual currency Bitcoin.

by Helen Leggatt

With help from BitPay, Zynga is hoping to expand its payment options for players to make in-game purchases. A Bitcoin test will be available to players of a select number of games including FarmVille 2, ChefVille, Hidden Chronicles and Hidden Shadows.

Whether Zynga rolls out the payment option to all its games depends on user feedback from the test.

The news that a top social games company is to test Bitcoins has seen the virtual currency's value jump back to over $1,000 after having fallen to $640 in December, 2013, after China's largest Bitcoin market ceased accepting deposits. Zynga's intentions were first broadcast on the /r/bitcoin community on Reddit over the weekend.

While Bitcoin has received much press over the past year, its value has sky-rocketed and plummeted in equal measure, and the future of the currency is equally as unstable. While the Bank of America deems Bitcoin a "serious competitor to traditional money providers", its instability is likely to keep it from going mainstream for the foreseeable future.

Nevertheless, with Zynga's interest, and a plethora of retailers both on, and offline, prepared to take payment in Bitcoin, it is certainly a phenomenon that is worth watching.

During the festive frenzy of 2013, many retailers took part in a Bitcoin Black Friday event, including Virgin Galactic, Reddit Gold, and GSM Nation.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: Bitcoin, currency trends, gaming, retail, social, virtual currency

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