One of the Japanese rail companies could accept bitcoin for payments…

Interesting article from Land of Rising Sun.

The Japanese preoccupation with Bitcoin is legendary. The land of the rising sun moves 11 percent of all global Bitcoin trading volumes. It is also at any given time either the first or second runners-up largest Bitcoin economy globally.

Perhaps Satoshi Nakamoto’s Japanese name serves as an initial  attraction, but the country’s interest in cryptocurrencies has deeper roots. The nation has been at the forefront of technological advancement. All cool gadgets once came from Japan; Nintendo to Sony to bullet trains.

It does not come as a surprise then that this culture would be at the forefront of the adoption of technology as cutting edge as blockchain. Soon travelers on East Japan Railway Company’s (JR East)trains could foot their bill using cryptocurrencies. JR East is working with IIJ an internet and cloud service provider to roll out this service using Suica, the train company’s Smart-cards.

….

Japan is an interesting case study for the mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies because it is mostly a cash-based economy. Its immediate neighbors South Korea and China have quickly gone cashless, but it seems that the Japanese have not found use cases for electronic and mobile payments. So will they really ditch their treasured banknotes and coins for digital wallets?

Japan has over 3.5 million cryptocurrency die-hard traders; die-hard because even after the Mt. Gox and CoinCheck mega-losses, their enthusiasm for Bitcoin and crypto never waned.

You would think their government’s friendly stance towards cryptocurrency trading would change with the hackings. Surprisingly, the authorities have further embraced the technology, and today it is the first nation on earth to recognize cryptocurrencies as money—not legal tender—but assets subject to tax.

Hmm.. They are also eyeing the Tokyo 2020 Olympics to become cashless…

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