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DISH Enters the Bitcoin Business

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If you’ve been “hanging on” to Bitcoins looking for a way spend your still relatively obscure digital-only currency, a new outlet emerged this week. Subscribers to Dish satellite TV can now pay their cable bills with Bitcoin, which was developed by a software engineer in 2009 and is often referred to as “crypto currency.” The Englewood-based Dish is now the largest company to accept the digital money. Other Bitcoin-accepting businesses include WordPress, the mobile gaming company Zynga, and online retailer Overstock.com. “We always want to deliver choice and convenience for our customers and that includes the method they use to pay their bills,” said Bernie Han, Dish executive vice president and chief operating officer, in a statement. “Bitcoin is becoming a preferred way for some people to transact and we want to accommodate those individuals.”

Dish will use a company called Coinbase to manage the transactions. “We’re excited to support DISH and their current and new subscribers for their bitcoin transactions,” said Coinbase co-founder Fred Ehrsam. “This is a large step forward in the growing momentum of customers paying companies in bitcoin for things we do every day, like watching premium TV.”

Sure, being able to pay for something as mundane as your cable bill with Bitcoin is clearly a step toward legitimacy for the fledgling currency. The big question: What companies will follow Dish’s lead?

—Image courtesy of Shutterstock

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