Gaming and digital distribution platform Steam announced its decision to stop accepting bitcoin. The decision actually came due to bitcoin’s volatility. Steam started accepting bitcoin payments last year, in April. At that time, one bitcoin was priced $450.
Valve, which owns Steam, made the official announcement on the decision on Wednesday. The company said that the volatility of the bitcoin and its growth has made it too expensive for the platform to continue accepting this form of payment.
Steam’s parent company says Bitcoin fees are too high
Bitcoin’s value has known very rapid changes in the past few months. The value of the cryptocurrency has increased a lot, but it also suffered a few drops. Given this reality, the amount of bitcoin that customers need to pay to purchase a game can change too much, sometimes even while a user is completing a purchase.
The company said that:
In the past few months we’ve seen an increase in the volatility in the value of Bitcoin and a significant increase in the fees to process transactions on the Bitcoin network. For example, transaction fees that are charged to the customer by the Bitcoin network have skyrocketed this year, topping out at close to $20 a transaction last week (compared to roughly $0.20 when we initially enabled Bitcoin). Unfortunately, Valve has no control over the amount of the fee.
According to Steam, until now, the platform has been able to deal with all issues, as it has either refunded customers or asked them to send additional payments. However, the platform said that this is not a long term solution, because the fees for additional transactions are too high. And since bitcoin’s value continues to increase, the problem will persist.
Steam concluded that for now, it is unable to accept bitcoin as a form of payment on its platform. However, this does not mean that Steam cannot change its decision in the future. It depends on whether the issues that Steam has faced will be overcome.