Crypto on Stripe

2024-04-28 19:45:00 +07:00 by Mark Smith

I've spent quite a lot of time building payment and subscription systems using Stripe. Initially for my linkblog SaaS, but also for my personal website. Overall I like it. The API is well documented and pretty easy to understand. The backend admin interface is tidy, ergonomic and easy to use, and it's got many developer friendly info screens that make it easier to debug issues. I'm pretty confident I could build most billing systems using Stripe.

My main gripe is that during a redesign of my SaaS' billing system, that I was forced into because of new government regulation, things got a bit sketchy. They had to reshape their API adding lots of new endpoints and some new products. When I started using them it became clear that there were things that weren't very well documented, with example code that didn't work. The support team, who had been until then really great got a bit difficult and I ended up wasting nearly a month for no good reason.

It felt like I was beta testing their software at my own cost, and when it didn't work, I got blamed. This is a re-occuring pattern by the way, same exact thing has happened to me with several other companies. In this case it was quite a big contributing factor to running out of runway, and having to shutdown my project. The timing couldn't have been worse. I finished the project, with everything fully functional, only to have to shut it all down.

So even though I like Stripe, and I know the government regulation stuff wasn't entirely their fault, I'm now much more apprehensive.

All that said, I think it's great news that Stripe has finally added crypto payments. They apparently did previously support Bitcoin but removed it, sighting volatility as the main reason.

They describe their latest crypto feature as follows:

It will start this Summer with USDC on Solana, Ethereum, and Polygon, showing a demo of crypto payments using Solana at their developer conference

I clearly need to read more about how these other blockchains and stable coins work. I don’t fully get it. I have lots of questions.

The big thing I'm waiting for is to be able to receive payments using Bitcoin. That really would be cool. No word on that yet though.

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