Shoppers can pay AT&T bills with cryptocurrency
AT&T (T) customers can now pay their bills using cryptocurrency thanks to a partnership between the mobile operator and digital bill payments company BitPay. AT&T says it has customers who use cryptocurrency, and the company wanted to allow them to pay their bills with their preferred method.
In accepting cryptocurrency for bill payments, AT&T is following in the footsteps of retailers Amazon (AMZN), Nordstrom (JWN), and GameStop (GME). Amazon has partnered with payments startup Flexa to allow shoppers at its Whole Foods stores to pay using cryptocurrencies, according to a report from Fortune. Nordstrom and GameStop are also working with Flexa to allow their customers to pay with cryptocurrency. Microsoft (MSFT) also accepts bitcoin for app purchases on its digital store. Bitcoin is the world’s most popular cryptocurrency.
AT&T sees a competitive advantage in the move
AT&T has touted itself as the first major mobile operator in the United States to provide its customers with the option to settle their bills using cryptocurrency, suggesting the company hopes this move will give it some competitive advantage in America’s wireless market. America’s mobile operators are struggling to grow their subscriber bases in the country’s mature wireless market, leading them to find new ways to attract new customers. T-Mobile (TMUS) and Sprint (S), some of AT&T’s competitors in the wireless market, have been using price discounts to lure customers to their networks.
AT&T’s revenue jumped 17.8% year-over-year to $44.8 billion in the first quarter.