Bitcoin merchant services provider BitPay added support for contactless Near Field Communication payments through its new Bitcoin Checkout App, eliminating several steps in its payment process.

BitPay has typically used QR codes to facilitate payments, meaning that consumers had to unlock their phone, open up their Bitcoin wallet app and use the camera to capture an image of the QR code presented on the merchant's terminal. The addition of NFC eliminates several steps in that process, allowing consumers to merely unlock their phone and tap, said Tony Gallippi, co-founder and executive chairman at BitPay, during the Money2020 conference in Las Vegas.

Apple Pay recently gave NFC technology a boost with the launch of its Apple Pay mobile wallet.

The Bitcoin Checkout app is available in 40 languages and includes advanced merchant features including tipping and tip reporting and multi-employee checkout. The app is currently available on Android tablets and phones, with iOS versions soon to follow.

BitPay, based in Atlanta, Ga., is in a race with Coinbase, a consumer and merchant Bitcoin platform banked by Silicon Valley Bank, for merchant adoption. BitPay has raised $32 million in venture capital since its launch in May 2011.

 

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