When Bitcoin first came about, it was predicted by financial experts that the cryptocurrency would only be taken on as a respected currency in countries whose own currencies were failing. However, it turns out that quite the opposite happened! It was actually countries with some of the strongest currencies that first began to accept Bitcoin as a ‘proper’ currency- including the likes of Switzerland and Japan.
After America and China, Japan actually has the third largest and most thriving economy in the world. It makes more money than you can imagine every single year, and so it came as a surprise to almost everyone when they decided to adopt the mainstream use of Bitcoins.
In order to introduce Bitcoin currency into mainstream life, the Japanese had to put several things into place; they had to change the legal currency status, completely eliminate sales tax (a motion that’s expected to be fully in place by July 2017) and also begin to do regulated exchanges. This was all quite a lot of work; however, it all paid off. Not only did the Japanese have the ability to start using Bitcoin as a currency, but there were some positive benefits in terms of businesses too- 5,000 different merchants across the country accepted Bitcoin in their stores and the country rose to number two in the world in terms of Bitcoin trading volume, a huge achievement.
The most trustworthy source of evidence that Bitcoin is being regularly used as currency as opposed to using the Japanese currency, Yen, is the fact that over 5,000 different merchants are accepting Bitcoin as a method of payment. Use of Bitcoin as a currency is only expected to surge further when the Olympic Games head to Tokyo in 2020, as it has been predicted that many tourists will opt to pay for things in Bitcoin rather than having to convert their money to Yen.