Zynga trials Bitcoin payments for in-game purchases

Players using the company's main portal can use bitcoin for seven games

Game developer Zynga is testing bitcoin for in-application purchases of virtual goods, becoming one of a growing number of online businesses accepting the virtual currency.

The bitcoin option is open to those playing seven games through the company's main portal, Zynga.com, which include FarmVille 2, CastleVille, ChefVille, CoasterVille, Hidden Chronicles, Hidden Shadows and CityVille, according to a company post on Reddit.

A purely digital currency, a bitcoin is essentially a secret number that is transferred from one party to another on a peer-to-peer software network using public key cryptography.

Regulators around the world are mulling how bitcoin fits into existing financial regulations. None have banned it, although some countries, such as China, have made it more difficult to move funds into exchanges that sell bitcoins. Traditional banks have so far steered clear of it.

Bitcoin poses competition to online payment services such as PayPal, which collects fees from vendors selling goods. Bitcoin has much lower transfer fees, although businesses usually want to quickly exchange their bitcoins for government-issued money because of its volatile exchange rate. That exchange does incur a fee, but bitcoin payment processors aim to undercut PayPal.

The price of a bitcoin ticked up over US$1,000 on Monday on Mt. Gox, a Japan-based bitcoin exchange.

Zynga is using BitPay, an Atlanta-based company, as its payment processor. BitPay offers a guaranteed exchange rate and regular direct deposits to merchants in 33 countries.

Online sites such as Reddit and WordPress accept bitcoins, but online giants Amazon.com and eBay -- which owns PayPal -- do not yet.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesBitPaye-commerceZyngagamesinternet

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?