A local university said Sunday it opened a store last week that accepts bitcoins for payment, becoming the country's first university to deal with the controversial virtual currency.
The hot dog joint on the Seoul campus of Hanyang University started to accept bitcoins on Monday, university officials said.
"Transactions are simpler compared to traditional forms of payments like credit cards, and there is no fee involved because (bitcoins) are traded between individuals without intermediaries like banks or credit card firms," said Hanyang professor Kim Il-seon, who organized the bitcoin project. "Before long, bitcoins will become a transaction means that threatens credit cards."
A bakery in Incheon, west of Seoul, started accepting bitcoins for the first time in South Korea in December, but the use of the electronic currency has not yet picked up to a meaningful scale.
The Bank of Korea said in December that while bitcoins do have merits in terms of efficiency and convenience, it doubts that they will become an alternative payment tool because of hacking concerns and price volatility. (Yonhap)