Many people may consider staking an easier alternative to mining—one that is less resource-intensive. It can be defined as holding funds in your cryptocurrency wallet in order to support the operations and security of a blockchain network. In simple terms, staking is holding cryptocurrencies so you can earn rewards.
In many cases, you can stake your coins from your cryptocurrency wallet directly. Alternatively, you can take advantage of the staking services offered by exchanges. With Binance Staking, for instance, you can earn rewards by simply having your crypto-coins on the exchange.
You will need to first understand Proof of Stake (PoS) and how it works if you want to better understand staking. Proof of Stake is a consensus mechanism that lets blockchains operate in a more energy-efficient manner while maintaining some degree of decentralization.
Take a closer look.
What Is PoS (Proof of Stake)?
You might already know about PoW (Proof of Work) if you know about Bitcoin and how it works. It is the process through which transactions are gathered into blocks. These blocks are then connected to make the blockchain. Miners typically compete to find a solution for a difficult mathematical puzzle. The miner that solves it first gets to add the next blockchain block.
PoW is a robust mechanism but it involves too much arbitrary computation. The only purpose of the puzzle that miners solve is to ensure the network is secure. It has no other purpose. Some people could argue that this alone justifies the excess of computation.
But someone else may wonder: is the high computational cost really necessary in maintaining decentralized consensus?
That is where Proof of Stake comes in. Participants can hold their “stake” or coins. The protocol will then randomly assign one participant the right to add the next block. The amount of coins one has determines the probability of being picked. So if one has more coins, their chances are higher.
Unlike with PoW, participants are not chosen depending on their ability to find the solution to a complex challenge. It will depend on the amount of staking coins one is holding.
Some may say that using staking to produce blocks may facilitate a high degree of scalability. The Ethereum network is set to shift to PoS from PoW, this being one of the reasons.
Who Came Up with Proof of Stake?
PoS may have first appeared on Scott Nadal and Sunny King’s Peercoin 2021 paper. It was described as a peer-to-peer crypto design deduced from Bitcoin.
The Peercoin network, initially, began with a PoS/PoW hybrid mechanism. Proof of Work was for minting the initial supply. The network, however, didn’t need it for long-term sustainability. So its importance was gradually reduced. The security of the network actually relied mainly on PoS.
Delegated Proof of Stake: What Is It?
Delegated Proof of Stake (DPoS) is an alternative version developed by Daniel Larimer in 2014. At first, it was a section of BitShares blockchain but the model was adopted by other networks. They include EOS and Steem, also creations of Larimer.
With DPoS, coin balances are committed as votes and the number of coins is proportional to the voting power. Delegates are elected using these votes. They manage the blockchain, ensuring consensus and security on behalf of the voters. The elected delegates receive staking rewards and, in turn, distribute these rewards to the electors based on their contributions.
With this model, a consensus is achieved with less validating nodes and the network performance is improved.
However, it could also reduce the degree of decentralization seeing as the network depends on fewer validating nodes. The validating nodes are in charge of operations of the blockchain. They define major governance parameters.
How Staking Works
PoW blockchains involve mining in order to add more blocks. PoS, on the other hand, uses staking to create blocks.
With staking, validators hold their coins so they can be picked randomly to produce a block. Participants holding more coins are more likely to be chosen as block validators.
This way, blocks are created without depending on special mining hardware like ASICs. Great investment in hardware is necessary for ASIC mining while one has to invest in cryptocurrency for staking. So for the next block, one doesn’t have to compete with computational work. Instead, one stakes coins. Network security is maintained by using stake to incentivize validators.
Every PoS blockchain uses their own staking currency. Others, however, have a two-token system. They pay the rewards in a second token.
Calculating Staking Rewards
The method of calculating may vary from one network to another. Others depend on various factors and are changed on a block-by-block basis. Some of the factors include:
- Inflation rate
- Total coins staked on the network
- The period of time that a validator has been staking actively
- The number of coins a validator is staking
- Other factors
Other networks determine the rewards using a fixed percentage. They then distribute the rewards to validators to compensate for inflation. With inflation, users tend to spend coins instead of staking them. This model, however, allows validators to calculate the staking reward that is in store for them.
Some people may prefer a reward schedule they can predict instead of relying on a probabilistic chance.
A Staking Pool: What Is It?
It is a group formed by coin holders to merge their resources and raise their chances of receiving rewards and validating blocks.
A lot of time and know-how is required to create and maintain a staking pool. Staking pools are typically successful on networks with a high barrier of entry (financial or technical). A fee is usually charged from the staking reward by the pool providers.
Individual stakers may enjoy added flexibility from the pools. The stake is normally locked for a set period. The protocol sets a withdrawal time. There is also a high minimum balance requirement for staking.
Pools don’t have a high minimum balance requirement and they don’t add additional withdrawal times. For new users, a staking pool makes more sense.
This is defined as staking on an offline wallet, that is, one that is not connected to the internet. One can use a hardware wallet or an air-gapped software wallet.
Users can stake while holding their coins securely offline. One should know that moving coins from cold storage will stop the rewards.
Cold staking is more suited for major stakeholders who would like to support the network while ensuring maximum security of their coins.
Staking on Binance
Holding coins on Binance is like having them in a staking pool. You enjoy numerous benefits without fees. You only need to hold your funds on Binance and everything else will be sorted out for you. The rewards are distributed at the beginning of every month.
PoS is ideal for anyone who is looking to be a part of the governance and consensus of blockchains and also earn passive income.
One should know that staking has its risks such as bugs.
Dogecoin began as a joke. However, it has grown to become one of the most popular online currencies.
Many Dogecoin or DOGE fans buy and hold it until they can sell it at a huge profit.
But is that all? Is becoming rich with Dogecoin that simple?
You are about to find out.
History of Dogecoin
Bitcoin, the first cryptocurrency, was open source. Everyone was free to copy it—and people did. Clones like Peercoin and Litecoin popped up all over.
Dogecoin was created in 2013 by Jackson Palmer and Billy Markus. It is a copy of Litecoin which is very similar to Bitcoin.
People always refer to Dogecoin using silly language relating to the moon and dogs. (The coin features the Shiba Inu dog).
From the beginning, Dogecoin gained a devoted fanbase. Its fans are mainly people who like dogs and those who want to participate in crypto trading without being serious about it.
Most people don’t get it. One of Dogecoin founders, Palmer, even washed his hands. He said that the cryptocurrency market is overheated and that the crazy rise of Dogecoin was a clear indication of that. The Crypto market crashed several days after that statement.
Dogecoin, however, survived.
Is Dogecoin Technically Sound?
Not exactly. Dogecoin copied Litecoin which is technically sound.
One user can send and receive DOGE in a permissionless way on the cryptographically protected network.
It works but it is not as decentralized or as secure as Bitcoin—not even close.
Dogecoin is not innovative, it has never been from the beginning. Its block time may be shorter than Litecoin’s and its supply unlimited, unlike Bitcoin; but Dogecoin is not regularly updated. Sometimes it takes years for a new version to be launched.
Dogecoin is like Bitcoin’s carefree and silly cousin.
Elon Musk Loves Dogecoin
Elon Musk is a fan of silly stuff. So, his love for Dogecoin doesn’t come as a surprise. He tweets about the cryptocurrency occasionally on Twitter—which causes the price to rise dramatically.
In an interview, Musk said that it would be ironic and entertaining to see Dogecoin become Earth’s currency in the future.
But Musk seems to prefer Bitcoin when it comes to business. Tesla bought about $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin recently.
Other celebrities like Gene Simmons and Snoop Dog have also endorsed Dogecoin.
Should You Buy Dogecoin? If Yes, How Do You Buy It?
Most major exchanges like Binance support Dogecoin.
DOGE works like any other online currency. You can transfer the coins to your wallet or keep them on the exchange.
Will Dogecoin Get to $1?
Dogecoin may have the support of rich celebrities and a dedicated fanbase but it is not technically interesting.
In a year, the price of Dogecoin has risen 13000% and its market cap is currently at $34.5 billion. Proponents seem positive that the coin will hit $1 one day. It is not impossible, but you also do not know how far the joke can go.
Tread carefully, especially if you are not a seasoned trader.
In a short period, Cardano (ADA) has made it to the list of top 10 online currencies by market capitalization. It is currently at number seven and has a market capitalization of more than $41 billion. It represents about 2% of the cryptocurrency market globally. It attained an all-time high ($1.5) on April 14, according to CoinGecko.
Charles Hokinson, co-founder of Ethereum blockchain and founder of Cardano leads the IOHK. He posted a video on his YouTube channel titled “Some Musings About the Roadmap”. In the video, he talked about Cardano’s roadmap over the coming four years.
He said that Cardano developers are busy trying to find a solution for the scalability issue as well as Cardano’s approach. However, he will start focusing on the issue when the Alonzo update is complete. After the Goguen update is done, the Cardano roadmap scalability phase will follow. The name of the phase is Basho, named after a Japanese haiku master of the 17th century.
The Deadalus and Alonzo Upgrade
The Deadalus update was released by Cardano on April 1. It marks the start of native tokens support on the blockchain and the Project Catalyst Fund3 voter registration. With this update began the countdown to the cryptocurrency becoming a totally decentralized blockchain.
The countdown has already reached its realization. A representative from the Cardano Foundation discussed the Deadalus update with Cointelegraph.
They said that a Deadalus user’s wallet can now be used as one unified interface to accept both ADA, in addition to many other tokens on the blockchain. They also talked about Cardano’s journey to becoming a decentralized blockchain.
According to Cardano, the decentralization event has put it on the map as one of the most decentralized blockchains globally. The next and last phase of Goguen is the Alonzo update. This upgrade is expected to provide smart contract functionality. The Plutus platform is responsible for enabling this upgrade’s development.
Additionally, Cardano developers have come up with a method of minting and selling NFT collectibles without the smart contract functionality.
ADA Could Hit $2 Because of DeFi Growth
Over the past 14 days, Cardano’s gains have grown nearly 10%. The important $2 mark is only $0.6 away. Given its current growth rate, the ADA will pass this $2 mark soon.
Something else that could promote growth is another DeFi summer. Going by the 2020 DeFi summer, the DeFi markets may reach new highs this year. As a matter of fact, ADA’s one-year gains are currently at 3,490.8%.
One expert believes that the Goguen phase’s final stages will introduce a number of existing DeFi trends onto the network. These include automated market makers as well as lending market.
With Cardano’s use cases and its Alonzo update, the cryptocurrency may well become an alternative platform to Ethereum. Ethereum has always been the king in the DeFi ecosystem. Cardano is choosing to take a positive approach as far as this narrative is concerned. They say they are more interested in offering world-class components and less interested in market share competition.
Cryptocurrency is an online currency not regulated by a central system. It is instead based on blockchain technology. Bitcoin is currently the most popular cryptocurrency.
Digital currency is becoming more common on Wall Street and this has led to the availability of more options. Now, there are over 5,000 cryptocurrencies.
You can use digital currency to buy stuff; but for most people, it is a long-term investment.
Cryptocurrency investing can be risky, especially if you don’t have enough information.
So here are the 10 best cryptocurrencies that you can invest in.
How the Top 10 Cryptocurrencies Were Picked
Has the cryptocurrency been around for long? This is not to say that new digital currencies are bad. But historical data helps you analyze the performance.
The performance of the company over the years is important. If the prices have had some stability, that’s good. A promising currency is one that is gaining value over time.
Is the platform usable and secure? Transactions should be handled smoothly.
You also don’t want to lose your investment because of an insecure platform.
A high adoption level usually means that the digital currency has great liquidity. It will be easier to spend, sell or trade in the future.
The Top 10 Cryptocurrency Investments in 2021
1. Bitcoin (BTC)
Bitcoin is the oldest cryptocurrency. Its volume, market cap and price are higher than those of the other options. It represents 40 percent of the market cap.
Bitcoin fluctuates a lot. It is also quite expensive for people who want to purchase whole shares.
2. Ethereum (ETH)
Ethereum is both a cryptocurrency and a network, making it unique. It may be cheaper than Bitcoin but it is well ahead of the other online currencies.
Transactions can take long to process.
3. Binance Coin
Binance has grown slowly but consistently. This has made it a stable investment option with fewer risks.
Many people are skeptical when it comes to security.
4. Tether (USDT)
Tether is extremely stable because it is connected to the US dollar.
There have been doubts about the actual reserve stock.
Investors love Cardano because transactions are cheaper and faster. It has also proven to be quite secure.
The low adoption rate makes investors hesitant.
6. Polkadot (DOT)
The creators of Polkadot are former Ethereum leaders. They wanted to create an online currency with a much better network.
Polkadot has a short history so it’s hard to assess its track record.
7. Ripple (XRP)
Ripple offers international transactions and the transactions only take seconds.
The growth rate is not that impressive.
Litecoin completes transactions much faster than Bitcoin. If the fast transaction rate continues, it could grow dramatically.
It is closely tied to Bitcoin so its value fluctuates a lot.
This cryptocurrency has an appealing price and it is easily accessible. It has also shown promise when it comes to growth.
Its low market cap doesn’t make it attractive.
10. Stellar (XLM)
This cryptocurrency acts as a bridge between blockchain networks and banks. It serves a niche need.
If it faces stiff competition its value could drop.
Charles Lee created Litecoin in 2011, and it is now the 2nd or 3rd largest digital currency after Bitcoin. For those already using Bitcoin, Litecoin has a few surprises for you. The main desktop application is an enhancement of Bitcoin-QT Client, and you can download it from Litecoin’s website—you can also use it as a digital wallet.
Litecoin is different from Bitcoin in some ways. To begin with, the cap for Bitcoin is 21 million coins while the cap for Litecoin is 84 million.
Litecoin has begun with a mining reward of 50 coins for every block just like Bitcoin. However, the award for Litecoin halves every 840,000 blocks which is larger than the set 210,000 for Bitcoin.
The Litecoin transaction fee is slightly higher than that of Bitcoin, but again, one Litecoin is worth 0.019BTC.
Where on earth can you get Litecoin? If you are not a miner, you have to purchase Litecoin from one of the few;
• BitBargain UK
Litecoin is still very far from matching Bitcoin’s standards and getting merchants to accept this digital currency is not easy.
The algorithm that Litecoin uses as “proof of work” is entirely different from the one that Bitcoin does. Bitcoin uses SHA256 hashing algorithm, and Litecoin uses Scrypt algorithm. In simple terms, the Litecoin system only favors systems with a very high RAM (which is very costly), and it is a kind of “Memory Hard Problem.” Apart from that, transactions are conducted just as in Bitcoin.
The Litecoin mining process is very much similar to the Bitcoin mining process. Same with other crypto-mining, in Litecoin mining there are mining pools that increase rewards for miners.
Whether you plan to solo mine or join a pool of miners, use cgminer—it is the best mining software.
Just like cryptocurrency in general, Litecoin is not for everyone. Charles Lee in an interview said that most will use Bitcoin for expensive purchases and Litecoin for micro transactions.
What is a crypto currency wallet? It is a software program for storing public and private keys and interacts with different blockchain to allow users to send and receive online currency and also monitor their balance.
Although there are so many people that use digital currency wallets today, there is still a lot of confusion on how they work. As opposed to traditional wallets, online wallets do not store currency. These currencies are neither stored anywhere nor do they exist in any physical form. It is only the records of transactions that exist and are stored on blockchain.
When someone sends you cryptocurrency, they are signing off ownership of those coins to the address of your wallet. The private key in your wallet has to match the public address the currency is assigned to if you want to spend the coins and unlock funds. If the private and public keys match, your digital wallet balance will increase while the sender’s balance will decrease. So do not expect a real exchange of actual coins. The proof of the transaction is its record on blockchain and the change in balance in the wallet.
Various types of wallets offer different ways to access and store your online currency. There are three distinct categories of wallets; paper, hardware, and software. Software wallets are online, mobile or desktop.
How secure your wallet is, depends on its type (hardware, online, desktop, mobile, paper) and your service provider. It is riskier to store currency on a web server compared to offline since offline wallets cannot be hacked. However, regardless of the wallet you are using, you should be careful because if you lose your private keys, you lose your money as well. In another case, you can be scammed.
1. Backup your wallet. Only store small amounts online and keep the rest in a highly secured environment.
2. Update your software regularly (both on your mobile and computer).
3. Add extra security layers.
Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency, but many others (altcoins) have come a long way. If you would like to have a variety of digital currencies, you can do so without having a different wallet for each one. There are multi-currency wallets that allow you to have several currencies in the same wallet.
Some transactions require you to pay a fee while others don’t. Alternatively, you can set your fee. Either way, the fees are usually too small.
Wallets are pseudonymous. Your wallet is tied to your identity, but your identity is not public. However, your wallet address can trace back to your identity.
There are many options for you. But you need to know how you are going to use it first before making a decision.
The following are examples of great wallets that you may want to try out.
• Bread wallet—it is available on Google Play and the Appstore.
• Mycelium—this one offers you total control over your bitcoins.
• Exodus—still new and only available on the desktop.
• Copay—it provides a multi-signature feature and you people/partners can fund.
• Jaxx—for people looking for a multi-currency wallet.
• Ledger Nano
• Green Address
• Blockchain (dot) Info
Many people like to refer to Litecoin as the “silver to Bitcoin’s gold.” By market cap, it is ranked as the third largest digital currency after Bitcoin, with Ripple taking the second place.
Litecoin was founded to act as a Bitcoin alternative to make up for its perceived shortcomings—it was developed to be “lightweight” and be more plentiful than Bitcoin. Moreover, its proof-of-work algorithm is Scrypt which was incorporated to make it immune to ASIC mining. However, a few companies have voiced their plan to launch Scrypt ASIC miners soon.
Processing blocks on Litecoin’s network is fast, a maximum of 84 million coins can be produced, as opposed to Bitcoin where the maximum is 21 million.
What you should know before buying Litecoin;
• Litecoin captured the attention of more speculators in November 2013 after Bitcoin’s price surged, but since then prices have been dropping in parallel. The prices of these two digital currencies are likely to move towards the same direction, even if Litecoin’s value is much lower compared to Bitcoin’s.
• Veteran Bitcoin investors should find it easier adapting to Litecoin as opposed to amateurs who might have a hard time because the infrastructure is not as established as in Bitcoin.
• You can alternatively gain Litecoins by using standard computing equipment to mine them.
• Research extensively before you invest and risk only the amount that you can afford to lose.
If after your research you have decided to invest in the Litecoin market, you need to be aware of several potential issues and pitfalls.
Buying Bitcoins is straightforward, not so with Litecoins. This, of course, is not surprising because Litecoin infrastructure is less developed. Buying Litecoins with Bitcoins is one of the simplest ways of purchasing Litecoins.; it is also the fastest and the cheapest.
If you have Bitcoins, you buy Litecoins with them easily on several exchanges;
• And several others that you can find on the Litecoin Wiki
Currently, exchanges are not willing to deal in Litecoin which is one of its biggest issues right now. Most of them allow BTC/LTC conversions only. Bitfinex, BTC-E, Kraken, and Crypto-Trade sell Litecoins for dollars, rubles, and euros but again, their availability will depend on where you are.
Purchase Litecoins for fiat on the following exchanges;
• BitBargain UK
• Bittylicious UK
Even buying Litecoins through money wire transfer via an exchange is not so straightforward, since it can be strenuous. For example, Coinbase and BTC China do not deal with Litecoin yet they are major Bitcoin exchanges. And also, the transaction is not as fast.
To make it easier, purchase Bitcoin locally and save yourself the trouble of wiring money abroad to convert it to Litecoin.
Although several exchanges have online Litecoin wallets, they are rarely helpful. Many investors prefer to have secure cold offline wallets. Luckily, Litecoin has a built-in encryption feature that can help you keep your wallet safe in a few clicks.
There are not many Litecoin wallets for you to choose from as Bitcoin. The two primary ones are Litecoin-Qt and Electrum. Carefully read the fine print when selecting a wallet since most of them charge for almost everything including storage.
Litecoin has been making headlines. As Bitcoin and Ethereum prices declined amidst panic concerning Bitcoin’s future, Litecoin surged. It went from $40 to $55 in June. This quick increase in price has attracted the attention of investors, and they are now re-examining Litecoin. Its main weakness is that it is quite similar to bitcoin, but this might help it grow in value.
History has led us to believe that Bitcoin is powerful enough to control the rest of the online currency market. Bitcoin’s price sunk following a 28% rally after people hoped the “Bitcoin Civil War” was coming to a stop. Shortly after, Ethereum price went streaking down following Bitcoin’s. However, even when other cryptocurrencies followed Bitcoin, Litecoin appeared to be immune to that siren call. In other cases, Litecoin price continued to rise when Bitcoin’s remained stagnant.
Looking at the two cryptocurrencies from a technological point of view, Litecoin has the upper hand because of two reasons; its mining ease and transaction speed. Litecoin takes only 2.5 minutes to produce blocks for its blockchain while Bitcoin takes 10 minutes. Because of Litecoin’s ability to perform transactions faster, investors focusing on utility will prefer it over Bitcoin.
Litecoin’s algorithm is very simple compared to Bitcoin—mining Litecoin takes less time and effort. With time this may change, but until then, investors will always run to Litecoin when Bitcoin’s scaling issues frustrate them.
Another big score for Litecoin is its cohesive community. The Bitcoin community is always frustrated, with so much chaos over the upcoming “fork.” Bitcoin’s community could not come to a consensus, but the Litecoin community found common ground. This will attract investors that want stability because Bitcoin’s divided community might end up tearing it apart.
All the above factors give Litecoin an advantage over Bitcoin. However, investors must not decide that Litecoin is the best, by considering these factors alone. Because then, they will be missing one major point; Bitcoin still possesses the first-mover advantage. It is almost ten years old and had enough time to attract investors and take control over the market—an advantage that Litecoin does not have since it was only launched around six years ago.
Smart investors know that “a healthy investing portfolio is a balanced portfolio.” Based on that logic, it is wise to invest in several cryptocurrencies. Some investors will not agree with this because they always believe that only one online currency will triumph. However, with more cryptocurrencies in the market, and a majority of them offering fantastic utilities, it is very likely that most of them will still be there in the future.
Analysts think shortly, several cryptocurrencies will be operating in the global economy. Therefore, when an investor is evaluating Litecoin, they should focus on the characteristics that set it up to become a success in the global economy. Also, they should analyze and see if those features will help it survive its rivalry with Bitcoin. Of course, it does not have to be stronger than Bitcoin, but it should stay relevant in Bitcoin’s world.
As the use of blockchain gains popularity, the system has seen its fair share of hype over the years, and more research has been directed at looking into the appropriateness of this technology. Thanks to the creation of authorization and authentication of different processes in the digital world, it has ruled out the need for the use of centralized administrators.
This efficiency has eventually created an upsurge of digital relationships, hence leading layers of the internet ideal for the performance interactions and transactions of values. The new tech, also known as the “internet of value” is apparently overriding the “internet of information” that has been in place for the last few decades.
However, this new internet layer does come with several downsides as well, which will make cryptographic keys, blockchain, and cryptocurrencies an unfavorable option eventually. So where is the line between which of the two models is the best?
Well, the use of paper has been efficient, thanks to the fact that it is hard to counterfeit with all the seals and appearances among other factors. But this can be a difficult approach when you consider a constant and regular flow of transactions, since the method may not be ideal if someone wants to keep up the pace. Besides, manual data entry comes with its challenges as well.
The flexibility of blockchain, as well as the ability to cater to the wide range of parties writing entries, can be beneficial. In most cases, third-party participants play a vital role in taking care of authorizations and authentication of transactions. This can be useful if security is the focus, but when the privacy of the data outweighs all else, there is no need for connecting it to any network for security reasons.
This is where blockchain come into play, offering the ideal security for the digital identity that would otherwise be impossible. In case a database has to support lightweight financial transactions, blockchain can be rather useful.
Another inevitable consideration is the transaction speed. If speed is the key, in which case transaction should be carried out in milliseconds and yet with high performance, a centralized system will be the way to go. The drawback for blockchain is relatively slow and storing the data comes with a cost. But with the centralized data systems that feature a client-server operation, speed is attainable, and they are not expensive.
This gives the centralized models an upper hand over blockchain. The bottom line is that as much as the potential of blockchain is yet to be fully unveiled, it is clear that most of the areas that have been confirmed to be useful so far include the aspect of securing as well as managing digital-based relationships.
This can benefit as a system record, but slightly fails when it comes to the performance and speed in carrying out transactions. But with these systems developing by the day, only time can tell when they will become a cutting-edge solution. For now, only the participant can decide on what is best for them in carrying out such transactions.
Better yet, the tech is also packing enough potential up its sleeve to transform the conventional business model in multiple sectors. Essentially, these chains work in a similar idea with large digital spreadsheets that all members in a decentralized network can access. The great thing about blockchain is that although it is well known for its use in bitcoin transactions, this technology has other uses as well.
And with the increasing value of bitcoin and its dominance in several mainstream sectors, companies offering financial services are stepping into the action. One of the things that make cryptocurrency a darling for most people is the currency’s ability to cut back on the costs incurred in the transfer of funds especially when it comes to sending money across borders.
While some investors are opting to stockpile gold and wait for the value to skyrocket, you can take advantage of the potential increase in the price of bitcoin. Although bitcoin is not as tangible as gold, the investment principles for both are similar. The supply and demand balance is the key here, and with the two being rare, you can step in on the opportunity to invest.
Pure blockchain tech play is gaining traction by the day, with numerous companies taking part in this sector becoming increasingly popular. One of the widely known companies, BTCS, is renowned as the premier “pure play” company in the US to focus on the use of blockchain technology. It works through unique verification services for transactions to make blockchain secure. Another company that is also gaining popularity is Global Arena Holding, which is enhancing blockchain technology in the potential of the tech for enabling voter verification.
Angel funding has been around for a while now, but the idea of using startups in blockchain is giving it a completely new outlook. Bitcoin has become popular, and everyone is looking into getting a share of the action, but this comes with funding. Well, with angel funding, you can be able to venture into the technology and stand to benefit from the innovation that it has to offer in the future.
Another interesting idea for blockchain is with penny stocks, which include other types of cryptocurrency like Altcoins and Litecoin. Most of these coins were designed to help in ways where bitcoins are not applicable but were primarily meant to pose a healthy competition for the popular cryptocurrency.
If you are looking into raising capital for any investment, there is no better way to do so than with the use of crowdfunding, which has become the primarily used and popular method for this purpose. You can use this to invest in blockchain, thanks to the use of alternative coins, or altcoins, which are pre-mined and sold in an initial coin offering, also known as ICO.
This is carried out before the public launching of the network. Among the most popular methods is the use of bit shares. With these options at your disposal, only your choice matters now. However, it is worth to consider risk as well and make sure you minimize risks to the lowest levels possible.
If there is one certain thing about blockchain, it is the fact that these are revolutionized systems of records. Since the time it was invented as the world’s premier decentralized and permanent ledger-based records, entrepreneurs have understood its implications. But blockchain have also seen its fair share of speculations as well, considering that the idea is applicable in virtually anything to do with records.
Not forgetting, this concept is ruling out the need for authorities to oversee transactions since cryptography gives individuals the power to do this all by themselves. The hype about these chains is centered on the probability of high-level use circumstances where blockchain tech can be applied. Digital identity can help as a system of records with the use of cryptographic keys, which allows individuals to have the right and means to form digital relationships with others.
This comes from the fact that the concept doesn’t rely on accounts or permissions related to accounts, the security in managing identity in the digital realm is relatively secure. And it is all thanks to the fact that one is not exposed to sharing excessive personal information that can be compromised.
Another means in which this technology proves valuable is when used as a platform. This usually comes down to some of its top-of-the-line aspects like its use for automated governance and smart contracting. Besides, it can also help with streamlining clearances and settlement in stock trading. Another area where this tech is applicable is in automation of regulatory compliance using the code form in governments’ legal systems.
Data management also plays a major role in gathering and collection of information for governments. This usefulness has seen governments develop an interest in three components of the technology. One of the things that make it ideal is the rights associated with ownership, generation, and revocation, replacing or losing the cryptographic keys.
There is also some interest associated with the aspect of who can participate in any chain, as well as interest in protocols based on blockchain when it comes to authorization of transactions. As such, many blockchain developers believe that regulatory compliance offers a potential business opportunity.
The use of paring items with their corresponding digital tokens also comes in quite handy for authentication of particular physical items. Therefore, tokens can be used to bridge both the physical as well as the digital sides. As such, tokens are used in the management of supply chains as well as control of intellectual property, fraud detection, and anti-counterfeiting detection.
Banks, as well as other financial institutions, usually rely on client-server infrastructure to run individual accounts. But keeping it secure from hackers can be a daunting task, especially with the risk of hacking at any given time. With blockchain technology, however, these institutions can create an automatically developed record of who can access records or information. Besides, they can also take control regarding permissions to access information.
In essence, Ethereum is a platform in the cryptocurrency market, which was launched in 2015 and helps create applications that are operated on blockchain. Although Ethereum popularity rose and declined within a year after its launch, it still holds the second position in the market after Bitcoin. But Ethereum comes with several factors that make it significant despite the changes, and here are some of the reasons why it is doing so well in the crypto market.
One of the things that make Ethereum stand toe to toe with the competition is that it is decentralized, just like Bitcoin, but the currency has the potential to be even more successful. The fact that it is decentralized makes it waterproof, since every participant doubles as both a server and a client, giving it resilience and security. This keeps hackers at bay, as well as ensuring no downtime in case technical difficulties.
Besides, another aspect of blockchain that makes Ethereum strong is the integrity of data. In this case, anyone can access records of any transactions ever made on the network, and locate the sender and receiver. Not forgetting, the records cannot be altered, making them safe all the time. This strategy makes it impossible for someone to use coins that they don’t have, which makes it ideal for payment protocol.
However, some developers have noticed this efficiency is not only about an instance of one simple use since keeping a registry comes with added security and efficiency of blockchain. This comes down to domain names, business contracts, and records of ownership among other essentials.
Although developers have already tried producing new apps using the blockchain theory, both have proved inefficient. At first, the idea was to create an app on top of Bitcoin, but the script is incapable of solving problems that other programming languages would otherwise solve with ease. This means developers have to improvise to get the desired results. Another idea was to develop, launch, and promote an alternative chain, which means missing the opportunity to use the significant power that Bitcoin network has up its sleeve.
Hence, the option of running blockchain remains the only resort, but this is costly and cannot work for every app. Despite all the downfalls, Ethereum has apparently come up with an answer through the integration of proper and multi-purpose programming language to its blockchain.
This way, anyone can figure out any application, and all they have to do is code it, and the ETH network will execute the remaining process. The system will verify the output as well as distribute value between the participants, all by itself.
This simplicity but effective power makes Ethereum a decentralized and powerful server that can be used across the globe. The application is thus operating on a transparent basis since there are no central authorities offering the input, thanks to smart contracts that can get the job done instead. Better yet, the network packs enough power that is only limited by the level as well as the power of the computers connected to the network, which means there are no limitations to the entry.
As such, Ethereum can be considered to be a worldwide computer that can excel at creating cryptocurrencies with ease and other unlimited potential uses as well. There is a lot that can be done with the network; only the required results can determine how far participants can go. And it is in this aspect of endless opportunities where the promising future of Ethereum lies.
According to some, the idea of Ethereum was born in 2009, when Bitcoin became the first practical solution of decentralization. Undoubtedly, the success of Blockchain greatly influenced Vitalik Buterin, the man behind Ethereum. However, 2012 would be a more particular date. That is when Vitalik left the University of Waterloo to travel the world while participating in various cryptocurrency innovations. While on this trip, Buterin conceived the Ethereum idea; a crypto economically secured platform for creating any kind of decentralized application.
After that, Vitalik started drafting the Ethereum Whitepaper. The document justified the idea of a new crypto technology, stated its main principles, and possible applications. The whitepaper was published in 2013, and a month later, Buterin announced the beginning of Ethereum project during the Bitcointalk forum.
In his post, Vitalik said that he was working with Jeffrey Wilcke and Dr. Gavin Wood as principle core developers. Wood took the main part in Ethereum creation after Vitalik. His Yellow Paper (the formal specification of Ethereum Virtual Machine) was published in April 2014. Coding its very first practical implementation in seven programming languages, this was the development of the first prototype of Ethereum platform.
Just like Ethereum, Bitcoin is based on Blockchain technology, but this means nothing if it is not backed by the most powerful network in history. Investors channeled millions of dollars into Bitcoin, using the money on trading, mining equipment, and technologies. Launching a network like that demands the same amount (or more) of effort. To kick-start a group of investors, miners, and developers, the Ethereum foundation chose to carry out a pre-sale of more than 60M digital tokens (Ethers). The campaign ended up being a major success.
Buterin, Wood, and Wilcke set up yet another legal entity to direct and oversee the Ethereum development process. To maintain momentum, they released several enhanced Proof-of-Concept versions of the software. DEVCON-0 was the first event that was dedicated entirely to Ethereum, and it was conducted in Berlin by ETH DEV, in November 2014.
That is when Ethereum developers from all around the globe met to talk about the network’s scalability and security. Final, pre-launch preparations have started with the release of Olympic—the ninth and latest version of Ethereum Proof-Of-Concept code.
The developers have taken advantage of this opportunity to conduct a final security inspection of the network. They have contacted several companies to perform an audit of the code. More importantly, developers have announced the Ethereum Bounty Program: whereby, whoever finds any weaknesses in the Ethereum software will receive significant Bitcoin rewards.
If you are a small business owner, you can use Bitcoin by promoting and accepting it as a means of payment. This is most suitable for business owners dealing with goods and services regular currency who wish to add Bitcoin to their way of payment for their customer. Besides, it is also essential noting that it is best if you are willing to pay tax on your Bitcoin income.
This digital currency has become one of the ways to carry out anonymous transactions as well as competing with the traditional currency. This has seen many small business owners uncertain about the best way to accept it, and whether it’s legit as well as concerns over tax payment and such. Not to worry, here are several ideas on how to use it.
The Bitcoin merchant solution is very convenient to use, especially if you are selling goods or services on your website. Then you can convert your bitcoins to the government currency through several available services.
Using tablet or Smartphone
This can work best if you use a QR code that your customers can with their device to make a payment.
In this case, when a customer makes a purchase, you can credit their account, like a discount. However, it is worth considering whether this will disguise the transaction in any negative way. You can also give a discount for Bitcoins, and then sell them for American currency, which will probably turn out that your income overall will reflect a benefit, but you may need to consult your accountant on this one.
Gift cards business
If you deal with the sale of gift cards or certificates, you can accept Bitcoin for the purchase of the card, and then have the card only used for a real purchase of goods or services. This is yet another place where the accounting comes in very handy, which you can also use to track sales.
If you usually send invoices to customers, you can boost Bitcoin’s economy as well. You can add it among the other payment options. This may necessitate your customers to call or email to pay, but it will be a great addition to your business. If you can generate Bitcoin addresses, it will be wise to generate a different one for every invoice and have it printed on it. This way, you can sort the invoices as they arrive.
Dealing with fraud
The risk of fraudsters can prove a challenge, especially if you do not know how to confront it. Fraudsters can take advantage of your customers, luring them to their Bitcoin address and taking your money. It is an urgent matter of whether or when a fraudster finds out about your customers, this can be detrimental. To prevent this menace, you can ensure people do not type your Bitcoin address off your payment stubs. You can also manage it by making sure they get your full address from your website, and use a secure SSL.
Bitcoin is becoming more popular than ever before, and its price is on the rise, making it a challenge for many to buy. If you are interested in a share of this digital gold, several options can help you get there. First, a Bitwage can come to your rescue. Bitwage is a bitcoin’s payroll that converts your payment into this digital currency, bitwage will also send you this a day after deposit.
Just like the popular freelancing platform, bitcoin freelance comes with its share of advantages. These benefits include receiving payments faster, the ability to save on your traditional banking fees and, in most countries, save on taxes too. Some of the best places to check out for these are jobs4bitcoin, subredit, and bitcointalk, although you will have to find an escrow or entrust your employer.
How many items do you have around that you never use? Well, those can make you money with bitcoin. Since you no longer need them, the best way is to exchange them for something of value, and this is one of the best ways to do it. You will most likely find someone out there who needs what you have, and exchanging them for bitcoins is the best way to cut back on chargebacks and intermediaries fees.
Most small tasks available don’t necessarily require experience or particular skills to accomplish. These can be completing surveys, pay to click ads or social promotions as well as solving captchas. Here, you can count on cryptocurrency excel for the micro transactions that come with such micro jobs. Some of these jobs include Faucet, which is available in many options. However, most faucets involve solving captchas for ads, although the payout can be very little, they can be done by virtually anyone. You can also try the Bitcoin.com’s birds, which involves retweeting paid tweets for money. As payment, they send you Bitcoins to your address.
If writing or art is your kind of thing, then you can make it more than just a hobby. With many writers trying to succeed with censorship from sources that sometimes do not live up to their promise, you can take a different course and earn Bitcoins. One of the best opportunities is the Steemit, a block-chain platform where you can get their cryptocurrency, Steam.
The reward you get is determined by the popularity of your articles, with the payment process being automated to be paid out based on someone’s up votes from others. Besides, if you curate content on the platform, you can earn as well, and then convert the altcoins you get to Bitcoin with the help of ShapeShift.io or any other online exchange platform. The best thing to do is determine which of the options available is ideal for you and go for it. Earn Bitcoins while doing what you love most.
There is much information on the IRS tax guide on virtual currencies; very few have done an analysis on Plethora of the record keeping and enforcement on the challenges that arise from the decision to treat Bitcoins as a property rather than a currency. Various bitcoins stakeholders such as traders, consumers, merchants, and miners must grapple with the new tax filing requirements. There is still need for the various changes and clarifications on the filing procedures.
The ruling placed on bitcoins is regarded as a property and not a currency. This is favorable given the bitcoin ruling to investors in its current stellar performance. The accrued long-term gains and losses shall be taxed according to the taxpayer’s applicable capital gains interest rather than ordinary income rates. This constitutes larger marginal difference among early investors and bitcoin miners. Still, active traders that have short term gains still will pay taxes at ordinary income rates.
Investors that have long trading losses are not favored with the ruling. It is hard to write off bitcoin bets now that they are considered more of a property than a currency. The IRS has set a limit for both married and single filers for losses at $3000, an amount that has remained static since 1978. Trading losses may need to be carried forward for even years before laying claim. Also, this affects the small traders. It would be better if they could have written off foreign currency against ordinary income taxation. This is the basic application of the IRS guideline.
The following are some of the tips for traders in compliance with the Internal Service revenue service and avoiding gray areas;
The various bitcoins miners need to keep daily transaction of the manner in which the transactions occurred. Record each block reward that you received as part of solving algorithms. While giving out the bitcoins subtract the income and output to get the long-term financial gains.
This is a different way in which digital currencies are created. At the date of minting the value stands at zero, at ordinary income values. Mark the date of minting as it will be useful for filing returns.
Most people trade using Bitcoin. The fair market value records this as an income. Record the details of the earnings. It will help win filing short term or long term trading returns. If you have earned bitcoins as a result of trading services or purchase of goods keep the details of the transactions.
When you are engaged in bitcoins trading, there are no immediate tax returns. Record all the transactions for the long term and short term financial returns. The taxable event comes during disposition regardless of whether you earn or sell it.
Some companies record bitcoins transactions as a form of payment. This is treated like selling bitcoins and should be recorded.
In conclusion, everyone should learn the operations of an excel finance sheet to gain the necessary insight on the IRS guidelines.
Bitcoin prices peaked at an all-time high of over $11,800 Sunday in one of the most dramatic value surges of any asset in living memory.
Today’s prevailing digital currency was worth just $12 in 2013, and has at times been dismissed as an internet fad favored by nefarious wheelers and dealers trying to circumvent taxes or the law.
Like it, love it, or confused by it, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have become impossible to ignore. Chicago’s two main exchanges, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the Chicago Board Options Exchange have announced plans to launch bitcoin futures contracts, and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission has already given them the green light. Nasdaq may be jumping into the bitcoin futures race as early as second quarter next year, Bloomberg reports. Bitcoin advocates are hoping the exchanges can help stabilize the highly volatile currency.
Cryptocurrencies provide a digital alternative to government-issued fiat currencies and can be used in online marketplaces to buy everything from a cupcakes to plane tickets to cyber pets. While bitcoin remains both inconveniently slow (transactions can take upwards of 10 minutes) and risky (buyers cannot set a price until the day of the transaction, leading to wide fluctuations), some say it’s already safer than certain foreign currencies, such as Venezuela’s bolívar.
That’s because Bitcoin is protected from fraud and counterfeit by technology called blockchain — an encrypted ledger system that records transactions accepted by consensus of asset managers. The Atlantic‘s Derek Thompson summarized bitcoin as a “frankly terrible currency built on top of a potential transformative technology,” one that could have the power to change our conventional understanding of money.
Others are more concerned by possible financial risks than potential benefits. Investing pioneer and Vanguard Group Inc. founder Jack Bogle reportedly advised avoiding bitcoin and “like the plague,” joining other investors in similar criticism. “There is nothing to support Bitcoin except the hope that you will sell it to someone for more than you paid for it,” Bogle said, according to Bloomberg.
Like bitcoin, ether “tokens” are underwritten by a blockchain network, in this case called Ethereum. Pioneered by a former Bitcoin Monthly writer, Ethereum was launched in 2014 with an aim to pursue further decentralization. It differs from bitcoin primarily in application: Ethereum is an open, decentralized software platform where ether is used to pay for transaction fees and services. As of Monday, it was trading at a rate of more than $472 with a market cap of about $45.5 billion.
Launched in California by former bitcoin developers in 2012, Ripple is considered by some industry experts to be bitcoin’s logical successor, according to the New York Times. It’s already catching on among banks as a worldwide payment and remittance system. Unlike bitcoin, Ripple is not just a currency but a system through which any currency can be transferred or traded. The Times advised to think of it as a Western Union without the heavy fees. As of Monday, Ripple was trading at a rate of more than $0.25 with a market cap of around $9.82 billion.
IOTA, with the tagline “Next Generation Blockchain,” is one of the newest contenders in the increasingly crowded cryptocurrency field. Unlike its rivals, IOTA is not reliant on an underlying blockchain network, but uses an alternative, distributive ledger system called Tangle. Partnered with Microsoft, Fujitsu and several other companies, IOTA considers itself the first marketplace powered by the Internet of Things. As of Monday, it was trading at a rate of $2.43 with a market cap of around $6.75 billion.
Dash ran through a ringer of names before settling its current epithet. There was XCoin (XCO), the original, in January 2014. Then there was the dubious-sounding Darkcoin. Then finally, there was “Digital Cash” and its portmanteau Dash. Dash differs from its competitors with a focus on privacy and anonymizing transactions, and by operating on a two-tired system: coin “miners” are are overseen by “masternodes,” a decentralized, volunteer network that signs the transactions. As of Monday, it was trading at a rate of $777 with a market cap of around $6 billion.
The brainchild of a former Google employee, Litecoin has been called the silver to bitcoin’s gold, that is, a slightly cheaper, more readily available option. Litecoin was launched in 2011, as a faster alternative to bitcoin, processing a bloc every 2.5 minutesas opposed to every 10, according to Ars Technica. Instead of focusing on hefty transactions, Litecoin targets merchants who need a large volume of small transactions to be processed relatively quickly. As of Monday, it was trading at a rate of $101 with a market cap of around $5.47 billion.
What, if anything, is Amazon planning to do in the cryptocurrency space? That’s the question after the cloud and retail giant was spotted registering three web domains relating to the field this week.
As first reported by Domain Name Wire, on Tuesday Amazon’s legal department secured the following web addresses: amazonethereum.com, amazoncryptocurrency.com, and amazoncryptocurrencies.com.
The company already has amazonbitcoin.com, but that registration took place in 2013—the address now automatically forwards to Amazon’s main site, whereas the more recently-registered domains don’t serve up anything yet.
After Domain Name Wire broke the news of Amazon’s latest registrations on Wednesday, some guy called Byron Wiebe also registered amazonripple.com, which forwards to the website for the Ripple cryptocurrency.
It is highly possible that Amazon amzn only registered its cryptocurrency-related domains in order to stop other people registering them in this way, which potentially infringes on the company’s trademark.
As CNBC pointed out, Amazon Pay vice president Patrick Gauthier said only last month that the company has no plans to accept payments in virtual currency, due to a lack of demand. That’s entirely plausible, especially as bitcoin, the most popular cryptocurrency, is currently more lucrative as a speculative asset than as a tool for actually paying for stuff.
But how about that Ethereum-related domain? The second-biggest cryptocurrency is not appreciating in value like bitcoin is, and its underlying blockchain mechanism also has more uses, being touted as a repository for self-executing “smart contracts” and other tools for technical decentralization.
Joseph Lubin, one of Ethereum’s co-founders, said just last week that such tools could be used to build a decentralized competitor to Amazon, made up of “many different actors with different roles.”
But that’s more about blockchain technology than cryptocurrencies. Maybe Amazon’s move has something to do with mining cryptocurrencies in its cloud? As recent analyses have shown, cryptocurrency mining is a scarily energy-intensive activity, so perhaps the company has figured out some clever way to mine smarter.
This is just spitballing, though. Really, at this point only Amazon knows why it registered those domains, and—we have asked—it’s not telling.
As bitcoin surged to all-time highs Friday, a key announcement from a major U.S.-based digital currency exchange could be a driving factor.
Coinbase said Thursday it is rolling out instant bitcoin, ethereum and litecoin purchases of up to $25,000 from U.S. bank accounts. Previously, customers using their bank accounts to buy the digital currencies had to wait several days to receive them.
“One of the biggest pieces of feedback we get on Coinbase is ‘why does it take so long!'” Coinbase Co-Founder and CEO Brian Armstrong said in a Thursday tweet. “Rolling out instant buys.”
Before this rollout, bitcoin’s price could fluctuate a lot during that waiting time, making it a drawback for the regular investor.
“The Coinbase instant buy program is yet another step toward mainstream acceptance of Bitcoin,” said Brian Kelly, founder of BKCM LLC, a hedge fund managing digital assets, and a CNBC contributor. “This will make Bitcoin easier to use as a transactional currency and could have the effect of increasing liquidity. The added transaction volume should also support the price. “
The company has nearly 11 million customers, according to its website.
TechCrunch reported Thursday that the instant purchase feature rolled out Thursday to about 15,000 Coinbase users and will be available for “all eligible” U.S.-based customers by the end of the year.
Bitcoin has leaped 21 percent within the last 48 hours to a record high of $5,856.10, according to CoinDesk. With those gains, the digital currency has multiplied six times in value this year and has a market value of more than $93 billion. That’s larger than that of Goldman Sachs.
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency and a digital payment system invented by an unknown programmer, or a group of programmers, under the name Satoshi Nakamoto. It was released as open-source software in 2009.
The system is peer-to-peer, and transactions take place between users directly, without an intermediary. These transactions are verified by network nodes and recorded in a public distributed ledger called a blockchain. Since the system works without a central repository or single administrator, bitcoin is called the first decentralized digital currency.
Besides being created as a reward for mining, bitcoin can be exchanged for other currencies, products, and services in legal or black markets.
As of February 2015, over 100,000 merchants and vendors accepted bitcoin as payment. According to research produced by Cambridge University in 2017, there are 2.9 to 5.8 million unique users using a cryptocurrency wallet, most of them using bitcoin.
Investor turned crypto hedge fund mogul Mike Novogratz has predicted Bitcoin will balloon to $10,000 in just six months.
Speaking on CNBC Wednesday, Novogratz, who is publicly bullish on Bitcoin and is starting a dedicated $500 million hedge fund, said he could “see the herd coming.”
“I’m pretty confident to say it’s going higher,” he told host  on the network’s Fast Money segment.
“…It would not surprise if in the next six to 10 months we’re over $10,000.”
Asked whether he thought Bitcoin was therefore a bubble, Novogratz said the “Blockchain revolution,” like railways and the Internet, would “change the way we live.”
“Yes, it’s a bubble, it’s going to be one of the great manias of all time,” he continued.
“Bitcoin happens to be the bellwether of this entire decentralized revolution, so it’s the easiest way people get gain exposure to it… Things like Ethereum I think will be the public utility of this new space.”
Signs of stability
Bitcoin prices remained relatively stable around all-time highs Wednesday, despite news that Russia was preparing to block access to cryptocurrency exchanges for its citizens.
Showing increasing resilience to political maneuvering, Bitcoin has managed to shake off wider-reaching moves by China, which saw an exchange ban and a halt on ICO operations in the country.
Litecoin was founded to act as a Bitcoin alternative to make up for its perceived shortcomings—it was developed to be “lightweight” and be more plentiful than Bitcoin. Litecoin also has almost zero payment cost and facilitates payments approximately four times faster than Bitcoin.
Table of Contents
1.Cryptocurrency Wallet Guide
2.How to Buy Litecoin
3.Mine Litecoin and Other Altcoins
4.A Better Investment: Bitcoin or Litecoin
5.Litecoin Wallet Clients
6.Bitcoin vs Litecoin
7.Invest In Litecoin
8.SegWit in the Wild
10. Second Largest Currency
11. Bitcoins in 8 Ways
12. The Purpose of Blockchain
15. Understanding Cryptoeconomics
16. Cryptocurrency: The Ultimate Guide
Bitcoin has hit yet another all-time high as virtually all the top 50 cryptocurrency markets rally.
Data from Coinmarketcap and Bitcointicker shows Thursday post Bitcoin highs of $4,687 on Bitstamp, beating the previous record of $4,576 Aug. 29.
The latest move upwards resulted in a consolidated effort from the biggest altcoins tracked by Coinmarketcap, with 95 percent of the top 50 posting overall gains in the 24 hours to press time.
Bitcoin is continuing to gain as commentators increasingly put faith in a test of the highly significant $5,000 barrier in the short term.
Various figures have been extremely bullish on Bitcoin reaching $5,000 sooner rather than later, ignoring criticism that the virtual currency remains in a bubble and will ultimately correct downwards in a manner similar to previous price spikes.
Commenting on the current price action, Civic CEO Vinny Lingham suggested the mid-$4,000s was a “nice consolidation,” but for a crucial upwards of downwards move, some external influence was needed.
Bitcoin is consolidating nicely at these levels but seems to need a catalyst for a breakout or a retrace…
— Vinny Lingham (@VinnyLingham) August 31, 2017
Meanwhile, Ethereum (ETH) has also posted near-record highs as news comes of developers signing a deal with a Russian state-owned bank.
The partnership aims to increase Ethereum expertise in the country, as well as study suitable state-sanctioned use cases for Ethereum Blockchain technology.
Sometimes, with all the buzz around women’s empowerment, it’s easy to forget just how new that concept is in the world of finance. American women could not legally own independent bank accounts until the 1960s, nor could women in the United Kingdom until 1975. Still today, millions of women throughout the developing world don’t have access to institutional financial services because cultural stigmas linger long after the laws on the books recognize women’s rights.
According to the World Bank’s Global Findex database, women in the developing economies are 20 percent less likely to have an account at a financial institution, and often even accounts under their names are de facto controlled by male relatives. Roya Mahboob, one ofAfghanistan’s leading tech entrepreneurs, overcame this dilemma by paying female employees in bitcoin.
According to Forbes, one employee with a violent and abusive husband who confiscated the employees’ money was reportedly able to use secret bitcoin savings to file for a divorce. The early bitcoin advocate Mahboob was deemed one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time in 2013. Since then, she’s been busy supporting women technologists across Afghanistan, even sponsoring the all-girls robotics team that recently overcame controversial visa restrictions to win second place at a competition in Washington D.C.
Meanwhile, Mahboob’s Kabul-based nonprofit Digital Citizen Fund has enrolled 9,000 women and girls in educational programs covering topics like blockchain technology, bitcoin and Ethereum.
“We helped 100 women start their own businesses,” Mahboob told International Business Times. “The next step is we are going to have a bitcoin conference in Afghanistan so we can showcase their projects.”
The cryptocurrency ICO market is getting more and more interesting every week. All sorts of ICOs are popping up that utilize blockchain, Ethereum, and cryptocurrency to solve big world problems.
Not only are they getting funding, they are getting lots of funding. TenX did over $80 million, EOS is well over $400 million so far, Bancor did $250 million, the numbers are very large. This goes to show the power of the cryptocurrency world. People are hungry for the next hot ICO that they can potentially multiply their cryptocurrency on, or hold for the long term.
The best use for blockchain technology so far and the place of biggest disruption is in the banking industry. The banking system is outdated and slow. The fastest way to move money from Los Angeles to Paris using the traditional banking system, is to not actually use the system and to physically fly there with cash. That’s not exactly an efficient system. Blockchain technology and blockchain startups are currently giving the banking system a well needed overhaul.
A new Ethereum based ICO company in the banking space, Everex, is bringing banking services to over 2 billion people who do not have a bank account. Everex gives those people access to a mobile based Everex wallet that essentially serves as a bank account with all of the related services but with no fees for exchanging money. Then people can use the wallet to get micro-loans, and micro financing at rates that are affordable. And it’s all backed by actual cryptocurrency.
Another huge issue in the massively outdated banking space is actually moving money around from person to person, or even to yourself. In fact, on a recent trip to Australia it took me over 5 business days to just physically move money to myself while traveling. From my own accounts. The burden and hassle on top of the long wait was extremely annoying, just to access my own money. Blockchain technology, cryptocurrency and startups like Everex begin to solve these problems where you don’t have a centralized power preventing you from accessing your own money.
Many people, especially migrant workers, want a way to send money back home. The problem is that the fees are outrageous and make it grossly unaffordable for the people that need it most. Everex allows you to send it fee free as well as exchange currency anywhere in the world without the astronomical percentage based pricing structures.
Traditionally, you could pay as high as 24% (in some cases even more) just to exchange currency and move it from one country to another.
Another pretty cool feature of Everex is cryptocurrency backed micro-loans and micro-credit. These are all 100% backed by Ethereum and Ethereum based cryptocurrencies. This concept disrupts the credit system and allows lending to happen all based and backed on cryptocurrency.
As of the time of writing Everex is already well into their ICO raising over $6 million worth of Ethereum so far the first day.
Messaging app Kik Interactive is the latest and potentially most well-established company to delve into a quirky new form of fundraising — creating its own digital currency.
Kik, based in Waterloo, Canada, unveiled plans for an “initial coin offering,” a process by which it sells tokens that can be used to buy services on its platform. The idea is that as more and more people use Kik, the value of those tokens, called “Kin”, will rise in value.
Interest in coin offerings is high, thanks to surging prices of bitcoin and other virtual currencies. Called ICOs, they give a wide range of people the chance to invest in a company or any other endeavor early on. While unregulated, they have proved popular, with investors spending around $330 million on tokens over the past year, according to data compiled by cryptocurrency blog The Control. Earlier this month, cloud-storage startup Storj raised almost $30 million in five days via an ICO.
Kik, which has raised about $120 million (in real money) from investors including Tencent Holdings Ltd., could serve to add a new layer of legitimacy to the process.
“Kik will be the largest install base of cryptocurrency users in the world,” Chief Executive Officer Ted Livingston said. “Kin, on day one will be the most-used cryptocurrency in the world.”
The move comes as Kik finally reveals how many people actually use its app regularly each month: 15 million. That’s a far-cry from the 300 million total registered users number it was sharing around this time last year.
Kik has traditionally been most popular among teens because, unlike Facebook Inc.’s Messenger or WhatsApp, they don’t need a phone number to use it. Growth has been tough in the past few years though, as teenagers get smartphones earlier and Kik users switch to Facebook apps once they leave high school.
Kik plans to gift a certain amount of Kin to each user. They’ll be able use the new currency to buy games, live video streams and other digital products. The company’s goal is to attract new merchants to sell on the platform, creating a snowball effect where Kin becomes more valuable and more sellers pile onto Kik, increasing its popularity.
“We will create an economy where millions and millions of mainstream consumers are earning in a cryptocurrency for the first time ever,’’ Livingston said. “They’re going to want to spend in that same cryptocurrency as well.’’