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Apple embraces virtual currencies

Cupertino changes app developer guidelines to allow ‘approved’ cyber tender

Apple embraces virtual currencies

Apple Inc has opened the door to virtual currencies on its devices in an update to its App Store developer guidelines.

"Apps may facilitate transmission of approved virtual currencies provided that they do so in compliance with all state and federal laws for the territories in which the app functions," according to the guidelines.

While a small number of companies now accept bitcoin as payment, many national regulators regard it and other virtual currencies with suspicion. According to Reuters, several US state regulators are considering tighter regulations for the use of cryptocurrency and have already warned investors about the dangers of trading in virtual currencies.

Virtual currencies are not policed by any central bank or national authority. Instead they rely on computational operations for the creation of more currency units in a digital mining process, theoretically controlling the money supply within the system and providing more stability.

However, fluctuating levels of trust have led to mirrored chaos with bitcoin, for example. Also, in the US, the Inland Revenue Service categorises bitcoin as a good rather than a currency, which means every transaction is a taxable event. Restrictions such as these may prevent widespread adoption.  

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