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Author Topic: Bitcoin Use In Philippines  (Read 9843 times)
rbscebu
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April 13, 2015, 07:00:07 AM
 #1

Bitcoin is ripe for mass adoption in the Philippines, but only after some major hurdles can be addressed. Some of these are:

  • Most Filipinos earn about PHP300 or less for a full day's work.
  • Smart phones (Android & iPhone) ownership is not that prevalent with Filipinos, however it is slowly growing as their purchase price drops. Now you can get a second-hand one for about 3 to 5 days salary.
  • Internet access costs PHP5 (about 10 minutes labour) per 15 minutes.
  • Free WiFi is not readily available except in very limited locations in major cities.
  • Most Filipinos are un-banked (cash is king) and do not trust/respect banks.
  • Very few Filipinos have access to or have a credit/debit card, although those with a bank account do normally have an ATM card linked to their account(s).
  • There are very few businesses in the Philippines that accept bitcoin as payment. Those few that do are mainly in Manila.

Most Filipinos are familiar with (and many use) pera padala (money remittance) businesses within the Philippines to send money between family and friends in the Philippines. Every major town and almost every small town has at least one pera padala business. These businesses accept cash, charge a fee of about 2% to 3%, and have cash available for the receiver to collect within a few minutes. Most of these remittance amounts are usually well below PHP5000 (about USD100).

The Philippines, with a population of over 100 million, is currently served by two major local bitcoin exchange businesses; coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange services as well as some value-added services. When exchanging bitcoin into PHP, both offer bank deposits (free) and pick-up through pera padala businesses (for fee a little above what they are charged  by the para padala business).

For the short-term future, I see the main use of bitcoin in the Philippines to be for remittances into and out of the country. Intra-country use will not develop until the Filipino can see an advantage in its use over cash.

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April 13, 2015, 08:02:57 AM
 #2

coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange

what's the daily volume of these?

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April 13, 2015, 08:07:13 AM
 #3

coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange

what's the daily volume of these?

Unknown by me, as they do not publish that information on their web sites.
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April 13, 2015, 10:00:00 AM
 #4

coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange

what's the daily volume of these?

IMO, Localbitcoins is the biggest Bitcoin exchange (in terms of volume) there. Both coins.ph and BuyBitcoin are relatively new, and most people are unheard about their services.

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April 13, 2015, 11:49:15 AM
 #5

coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange

what's the daily volume of these?

Unknown by me, as they do not publish that information on their web sites.

Hmm... never trust these sort of small exchanges. They can crash at anytime and your coins can disappear. At least never store your coins with them.


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April 13, 2015, 01:55:17 PM
 #6

You forgot coinage.ph and btcexchange.ph which are the real "open" exchanges. Their volumes are in the range 100~200 BTC per day.

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April 13, 2015, 01:59:07 PM
 #7

coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange

what's the daily volume of these?

Unknown by me, as they do not publish that information on their web sites.

Hmm... never trust these sort of small exchanges. They can crash at anytime and your coins can disappear. At least never store your coins with them.
Yes be careful with those types of exchanges they can disappear  and take your coins with them. Never hold any amount of bitcoin in those types of exchanges except when they are more trustworthy and popular.

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April 13, 2015, 02:33:32 PM
 #8

coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange

what's the daily volume of these?

Unknown by me, as they do not publish that information on their web sites.

Hmm... never trust these sort of small exchanges. They can crash at anytime and your coins can disappear. At least never store your coins with them.
Yes be careful with those types of exchanges they can disappear  and take your coins with them. Never hold any amount of bitcoin in those types of exchanges except when they are more trustworthy and popular.

I say forget about anything that isnt the main exchange ones unless you want to be a pioneer and try for yourself a service that may very well be a scam.

If you HAVE to then do it quick and dont leave a single satoshi on there.
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April 13, 2015, 08:39:39 PM
 #9

coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange

what's the daily volume of these?

Unknown by me, as they do not publish that information on their web sites.

Hmm... never trust these sort of small exchanges. They can crash at anytime and your coins can disappear. At least never store your coins with them.
Yes be careful with those types of exchanges they can disappear  and take your coins with them. Never hold any amount of bitcoin in those types of exchanges except when they are more trustworthy and popular.

I say forget about anything that isnt the main exchange ones unless you want to be a pioneer and try for yourself a service that may very well be a scam.

If you HAVE to then do it quick and dont leave a single satoshi on there.

Those two companies are simply on ramp/off ramps for BTC in the Philippines, you make an order, pay for it, and they send you the BTC to the adress you specify. I know Coins.ph has their own in-house webwallet, but, I mostly just use them to buy BTC from time to time.

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April 16, 2015, 12:54:31 AM
 #10

I use coins.ph, mainly to convert my XBT to PHP, and buy PH cell (mobile) phone load when out of the country. They have a good Android app for those services.

No exchange is "to big to fail". In the Philippines, the same can be said with their banks. We are use to that.

Like all exchanges, I NEVER leave significant XBT holdings in any type of "on-line" wallet. Coins.ph even recommend that you transfer your XBT out of their wallets as soon as they are not needed there. I generally keep no more than about XBT0.01 in my coins.ph wallet (for cell load purposes). If they close up, I can afford to loose that.
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April 16, 2015, 03:32:44 AM
 #11

Sam Kaddoura, co-founder of bitcoin exchange, BuyBitcoin.ph, said: "Those who do not want to go through the hassle of opening bank accounts or pass the requirements for credit cards will embrace bitcoins."
But in reality opening bank account is not that hard. I imagine that exchanges want from you almost the same kind of credentials as normal banks. And on top of that if Op said that internet connection is not that common among Philippine people and they also do not own smartphones it will be a long way to follow until bitcoin could be used freely.
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April 16, 2015, 03:39:11 AM
 #12

Sam Kaddoura, co-founder of bitcoin exchange, BuyBitcoin.ph, said: "Those who do not want to go through the hassle of opening bank accounts or pass the requirements for credit cards will embrace bitcoins."
But in reality opening bank account is not that hard. I imagine that exchanges want from you almost the same kind of credentials as normal banks. And on top of that if Op said that internet connection is not that common among Philippine people and they also do not own smartphones it will be a long way to follow until bitcoin could be used freely.
Text messaging is cheap and common in the Philippines. I'm sure as the market grows SMS will be used more and more. I would be surprised if there isn't an sms ready Bitcoin wallet yet.

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April 16, 2015, 09:45:24 AM
 #13

Quote
Smart phones (Android & iPhone) ownership is not that prevalent with Filipinos, however it is slowly growing as their purchase price drops. Now you can get a second-hand one for about 3 to 5 days salary.
Internet access costs PHP5 (about 10 minutes labour) per 15 minutes.
Free WiFi is not readily available except in very limited locations in major cities.
It seems Philippines still lack the necessary facility for the massive adoption of bitcoin. Internet connection may be the biggest hurdle for the process.   
 

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April 16, 2015, 11:25:21 AM
 #14

Yeah I don't know how I'm using bitcoins here in the Philippines. I have fiber optic internet in the poor Muslim island of Mindanao. Sometimes I even use bitcoins while drinking my mocha at Starbucks or Krispy Kreme. The perception of poverty is from folks that haven't been to the Southern USA. In fact it's difficult to find a Filipino not staring at their mobile device. More filipinos are on Facebook that any other nation per capita.

Any significantly advanced cryptocurrency is indistinguishable from Ponzi Tulips.
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April 16, 2015, 11:55:47 AM
 #15

It seems Philippines still lack the necessary facility for the massive adoption of bitcoin. Internet connection may be the biggest hurdle for the process.   

As per the latest stats, more than 40% of the total population in Philippines is having access to internet and the percentage is growing rapidly. 40% is a very good number, I'd say.


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April 16, 2015, 02:16:28 PM
 #16

No mention of Rebit for remittances from the US to PI?

https://rebit.ph/

Or the brain trust that practically owns all of these Bitcoin operating units in the Phillippines?

http://sci.ph/

Satoshi Citadel Industries pretty much runs Bitcoin in the Phillippines.  If you want to stir the hornets nest, best to contact someone from SCI with your idea, and they'll hopefully make it happen in the PI.

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theblacksquid
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May 02, 2015, 12:28:18 AM
 #17

Sam Kaddoura, co-founder of bitcoin exchange, BuyBitcoin.ph, said: "Those who do not want to go through the hassle of opening bank accounts or pass the requirements for credit cards will embrace bitcoins."
But in reality opening bank account is not that hard. I imagine that exchanges want from you almost the same kind of credentials as normal banks. And on top of that if Op said that internet connection is not that common among Philippine people and they also do not own smartphones it will be a long way to follow until bitcoin could be used freely.

This is just patently wrong. The average Filipino doesn't have enough of a paper trail or ID's to even pass the AML/KYC verification requirements for the banks here (I'm in Manila), let alone the initial and maintaining capital requirements to even keept the account open.

Yeah I don't know how I'm using bitcoins here in the Philippines. I have fiber optic internet in the poor Muslim island of Mindanao. Sometimes I even use bitcoins while drinking my mocha at Starbucks or Krispy Kreme. The perception of poverty is from folks that haven't been to the Southern USA. In fact it's difficult to find a Filipino not staring at their mobile device. More filipinos are on Facebook that any other nation per capita.

Mobile phone penetration here is beyond 100%, with smartphone penetration at 15% and counting. Having your own internet line is relatively easy here, with the numerous prepaid options that could give unlimited access (but certain bandwidth caps do apply), but even without it, you could rent a computer here at any of the hundreds of thousands of internet cafe's that have sprung up around the archipelago starting at $0.23 USD/hr

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EternalWingsofGod
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May 02, 2015, 05:31:09 AM
 #18

You forgot coinage.ph and btcexchange.ph which are the real "open" exchanges. Their volumes are in the range 100~200 BTC per day.

If I recall correctly your also in the area Dabs so you know best
It's still a cool idea though
The ease of use is likely the only problem, if it was integrated where phone credits could be loaded with Bitcoin using Smart or Globe then it would reach the next level.

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May 02, 2015, 05:45:19 AM
 #19

It seems Philippines still lack the necessary facility for the massive adoption of bitcoin. Internet connection may be the biggest hurdle for the process.   

As per the latest stats, more than 40% of the total population in Philippines is having access to internet and the percentage is growing rapidly. 40% is a very good number, I'd say.
Having access in the internet are more on in manila. Most part of the phillipines don't know how to use computer and they not willing to learn it most of the people who don't want to learn or adapt the bitcoin are people in province. And they not believe in bitcoin and they scared to hacked or scammed

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May 02, 2015, 06:17:23 AM
 #20

Bitcoin is ripe for mass adoption in the Philippines, but only after some major hurdles can be addressed. Some of these are:

  • Most Filipinos earn about PHP300 or less for a full day's work.
  • Smart phones (Android & iPhone) ownership is not that prevalent with Filipinos, however it is slowly growing as their purchase price drops. Now you can get a second-hand one for about 3 to 5 days salary.
  • Internet access costs PHP5 (about 10 minutes labour) per 15 minutes.
  • Free WiFi is not readily available except in very limited locations in major cities.
  • Most Filipinos are un-banked (cash is king) and do not trust/respect banks.
  • Very few Filipinos have access to or have a credit/debit card, although those with a bank account do normally have an ATM card linked to their account(s).
  • There are very few businesses in the Philippines that accept bitcoin as payment. Those few that do are mainly in Manila.

Most Filipinos are familiar with (and many use) pera padala (money remittance) businesses within the Philippines to send money between family and friends in the Philippines. Every major town and almost every small town has at least one pera padala business. These businesses accept cash, charge a fee of about 2% to 3%, and have cash available for the receiver to collect within a few minutes. Most of these remittance amounts are usually well below PHP5000 (about USD100).

The Philippines, with a population of over 100 million, is currently served by two major local bitcoin exchange businesses; coins.ph and BuyBitcoin. Both appear to be well operated, economical, and offer normal exchange services as well as some value-added services. When exchanging bitcoin into PHP, both offer bank deposits (free) and pick-up through pera padala businesses (for fee a little above what they are charged  by the para padala business).

For the short-term future, I see the main use of bitcoin in the Philippines to be for remittances into and out of the country. Intra-country use will not develop until the Filipino can see an advantage in its use over cash.



It's true that most of the businesses that accept bitcoin are only distributed along the confines of the metros. Also, slow internet connection with such a ludicrous fee (I'm paying $50 for a 3Mbps turtle) is another hurdle when it comes to using bitcoin, given that the network runs through the internet. SMS, on the other hand, is very active within the Filipinos. If only they can make a wallet SMS-ready or transactions can be made through SMS, many Filipinos would consider using bitcoins as well. Also, the main thing that I see people here would use bitcoins is mainly for remittances. I experienced one time when my uncle sent money from Canada to Manila, it took 2 days for the process to complete (which is nuts, because I need the money that same day), whereas in bitcoin, you don't need to wait for that long because transactions are made within a span of minutes from anywhere in the world. That's a +1 for me because I have relatives in other parts of the world that often send money to us.

Exchanges here on the other hand, do little promotion and advertising. Coins.ph do the same promotion in Facebook among others, and tbh, coins.ph is a nice exchange because they really deliver their customers' needs. They also have great customer service that replies instantly and helps you with your problems. Some other exchanges, I'm not familiar with, but I haven't heard a single time in which they do some sh*t over their customers.

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