Square Unveils Bitcoin Auto Payments Tool

Jack Dorsey's mobile payments company Square allows users to set up automatic bitcoin payments.

AccessTimeIconMay 20, 2020 at 4:00 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 8:43 a.m. UTC

A mobile subsidiary of Jack Dorsey's payments company Square now allows users to make automatic purchases of bitcoin.

Dorsey said on Twitter - that other company he runs – that Cash App had, from Monday, enabled automatic purchases of bitcoin at regular intervals, such as daily, weekly or fortnightly.

Although there's a minimum $10 purchase, the new feature provides users with the ability to gradually gain exposure to the original cryptocurrency without exposing themselves to too much volatility risk. "By spreading purchases out over time, you may minimize the impact of market swings," Cash App tweeted.

Cash App launched to facilitate app-to-app payments in fiat currencies. Rolling out bitcoin trading in the summer of 2019, and allowing users to deposit BTC the following June, the company disclosed earlier this year that just under half its total revenue, around $178 million, came from bitcoin purchases in Q4 2019.

First-time bitcoin buyers on the platform doubled in Q3 2019.

But one thing that stands out in the screenshot shared by Dorsey is that users now have the option to set up automatic purchases denominated in satoshis which, at 0.00000001 of a bitcoin, is the protocol's smallest transaction unit.

That's important. Consider: At just under $10,000, a single bitcoin already prices out many retail investors; it's also comparatively scarce, with only 21 million in existence. In comparison: with more than 2.1 quadrillion satoshis knocking about, and at a current price of $0.0009, the 'sat' becomes accessible to a broader number of people, as adoption continues.

It might indicate a gradual trend for traders and investors to resort to a smaller unit of account in response to the Bitcoin protocol itself increasing in both size and value. A good comparison might be that few people, aside from the very wealthy, go around buying whole troy ounces of gold (~$1,7400) but generally much smaller denominations.

Cash App isn't the first to denominate payments in satoshis, but it is the most high profile payment apps to do it so far.


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