Prague leads in Bitcoin

The city has the most places that accept the cryptocurrency

Prague ranks as the top city in the world for Bitcoin, according to an analysis by economic magazine Forbes.

Prague had the most vendors in the world that accept Bitcoin, with 147. There is usually a big divide between urban and rural areas, but the Czech Republic runs against that trend. The North Bohemian town of Žatec, with a population of around 20,000, has over 50 businesses that accept Bitcoin.

Another country bucking the urban trend was the Netherlands.

Following after Prague in Forbes' top 10 list were Buenos Aires, San Francisco, Madrid, New York City, Amsterdam, Bogata, Vancouver, London and Paris. The ranking is based on the overall number of vendors who accept Bitcoin, and it is not adjusted for population. The figures came from Coinmap.

The map is used by “crypto-nomads,” who wander from place to place using Bitcoin. Forbes noted that at least one such nomad spent the summer of 2017 in Prague due to the ease of using Bitcoin here.

Prague is home to Bitcoin Coffee, the only cafe in the world that accepts only Bitcoin and not cash. The same building has a cryptocurrency hub called Paralelní Polis, which promotes cryptocurrency and other topics like an unregulated internet. Paralelní Polis hosts the Hacker's Congress, a worldwide event for people involved in cryptocurrencies and other aspects of cyberculture.

The city is also home to SatoshiLabs, which describes itself as “a company of experienced specialists and enthusiasts in the cryptocurrency industry, located in Prague, the heart of Europe.” They have developed, among other things, a password-protected hardware device to carry Bitcoins. The company's CEO, Marek Palatinus, was a pioneer in some areas of Bitcoins technology

General Bytes, the second largest BitTorrent ATM company, is also based in the Czech capital.

Europe, South America and North America dominated the top of the Forbes list, while Africa, Asia and Australia were notably absent.

One reason for the lag in some areas is the lack of support from the government. Forbes points out that China at first embraced cryptocurrency but later shut down exchanges. As a result, few places there accept the currency.

Gulf countries have been reluctant to adopting cryptocurrencies. Reportedly, though, there is a growing cryptocurrency scene in Tel Aviv.

Bitcoin is popular in countries that do not have a stable currency. Venezuela has 8 percent of the world's Bitcoin transactions but a population of 31.57 million, less than half a percent of the world's 7.4 billion people. 

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