Of all of the mainstream companies, Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) has perhaps seen the most speculation about its potential foray into the cryptocurrency space. In the past, rumors have swirled, particularly when news becomes available indicating that the e-commerce giant bought up digital currency-related domain names. It's possible that the reason for all of the hype is that, given Amazon's size, growth and influence over businesses across many different sectors, it could quickly and powerfully sway the digital currency game should it ever get involved. Now, yet another rumor has begun to circulate: Will Amazon accept bitcoin payments in the near future?

According to Daily HODL, an anonymous software engineer at Amazon has indicated that the company has discussed accepting bitcoin payments "multiple times," with the primary hesitation related to how the business would deal with returns and refunds. Bitcoin's price remains highly volatile, and it could be difficult for the company to accurately refund customers the same value that they paid into the system.

No Official Word, But Plenty of Signals

For its part, Amazon has remained quiet when it comes to the possibility for cryptocurrency payments. Still, there are many signs that CEO Jeff Bezos' team is interested in exploring options surrounding digital tokens.

A subsidiary of the company called Amazon Technologies Inc. recently received a patent for a streaming data marketplace with cryptocurrency implications. The patent goes so far as to cite bitcoin specifically as a potential use case. Further, as indicated above, the company has purchased three cryptocurrency-related domains in the past several months, including amazonethereum.com, amazoncryptocurrency.com and amazoncryptocurrencies.com. The company already owns amazonbitcoin.com, a site that currently automatically redirects to the company's main site.

Further, Amazon Web Services offers blockchain solutions. AWS Blockchain Templates announced recently that "these templates will let you launch an ethereum ... or hyperledger fabric (private) network in a matter of minutes and with just a few clicks."

This is all to say that, although Amazon has yet to formally jump in to the digital currency​​​​​​​ world with, say, its own mainstream coin, the company has numerous times flirted with the possibility of getting involved.

Investing in cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offerings ("ICOs") is highly risky and speculative, and this article is not a recommendation by Investopedia or the writer to invest in cryptocurrencies or ICOs. Since each individual's situation is unique, a qualified professional should always be consulted before making any financial decisions. Investopedia makes no representations or warranties as to the accuracy or timeliness of the information contained herein. As of the date this article was written, the author owns bitcoin and ripple.

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