BitPay, a global bitcoin payment service provider headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia today announced that due to the Bitcoin network currently experiencing a period of rapid growth and seeing all-time highs in bitcoin transactions processed through BitPay they would be raising their minimum invoice amount from $0.04 to $1.00 effective Thursday.
Why? With the growth comes rising miner fees and BitPay must make up the fees somewhere. BitPay believes the change will protect consumers from creating un-economical transactions and remove their own risk for processing unprofitable transactions.
Merchants who wish to test BitPay’s payment system with smaller amounts can continue to create low-value invoices under $1.00 using BitPay’s fully functioning testnet environment. Since testnet invoices rely on bitcoin addresses from the Bitcoin testnet, they are not subject to the same confirmation times and fee levels as the Bitcoin mainnet. For individuals testing transactions, theBitPay wallet app includes a testnet wallet setting as well.
The BitPay team stated:
“Now that fees are reaching an average of $1 per transaction across the Bitcoin network, it’s becoming uneconomical for users to make micropayments under $1.”
Below you can see a chart of the miner fees BitPay has paid each month over the last year:
BitPay CEO Stephen Pair gave more background on the current situation with bitcoin network miner fees in his recent article The Bitcoin Fee Market.