From this month onwards, Japanese people can use bitcoins to pay their electricity bills. The land of the rising sun is the first country to accept the digital currency as payment method for basic services. This move represents a huge step for a system that started deep in the web and that is slowly reaching the surface of our everyday life.
Bitcoin mining is the term used for running a series of calculations on a computer to verify the transactions that take place in the bitcoin network. This activity that began with simple laptops now requires a larger computational power and therefore more energy, becoming one of the principal expenses of bitcoin miners and in a different extent an environmental issue.
Coincheck Denki is the service responsible for this advancement. To do so they teamed up with the companies in charge of energy supply in central Japan to finally reach this major turning point for a coin that has been buoyant as a speculative instrument, but that still has to win the attention of daily consumers. For this reason, Coincheck is offering discounts up to 6% to the adventurous consumers eager to pay with bitcoins.
This doesn't just legitimizes the bitcoin, it also recognizes the value in the highly specialized and abstract knowledge that a bitcoin miner uses in order to win money and sets a precedent for future coins.
Source: Bitcoin.com. Image: Moyan Brenn