The price of Bitcoin climbed above $3,500 and at the moment it is standing a little above $4,200. While some people are doubtful towards this gradual increase in value, Veteran trader masterluc says otherwise. He’s made a prediction that Bitcoin will be worth $15,000 by the end of 2017. He claims that this bull run will continue into 2019 where the price will top out anywhere in between $40,000 and $110,000.
Masterluc is said to have a history of being right in his predictions, and many experts agree that the rise will continue for a while longer, which could have some major consequences for paper money.
Bitcoin recently celebrated its market cap crossing over $50 billion as it tripled the price of gold. Predicting the future of the digital currency is not an easy task especially when its reign shows no sign of ending.
We all know that Bitcoin is the king of digital currencies, and there doesn’t seem to be any other coin that can dethrone it from the top.
Although not similar, many digital currencies can still be used as a perfect alternative to Bitcoin. Some even claim to be technically superior to Bitcoin. Whether it’s true or not is completely another debate. In this article, we have discussed the top five digital currencies that are closest to what Bitcoin offers and can be used as an alternative to the king of cryptocurrency.
Top Alternatives to Bitcoin – Ethereum:
Bitcoin vs Ethereum is the closest battle when it comes to currencies trying to overtake Bitcoin.
Ethereum is a public blockchain software which promises to offer much more than just digital currency. The developers can code the software and power it through the public blockchain.
The users can then sell their processing power and get paid in “ether” – the second largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization after Bitcoin.
Ethereum has a market cap of $1bn USD.
Emerged in 2012, Ripple has become one of the most popular digital currencies to make online transactions anonymously. The paramount aspect of ripple is that it offers instant conversion into several other currencies.
Ripple considers itself a companion of Bitcoin and converts Bitcoin to Ripple and vice versa.
The market cap of ripple is $220m USD, making it the third largest cryptocurrency in the world.
Litecoin emerged in 2011 and is one of the oldest cryptocurrencies out there. Given below are some highlights of Litecoin:
Similar to Bitcoin, Litecoin is decentralized.
Litecoin is also generated through solving algorithms, which become more and more difficult over time.
A Litecoin block takes just 2.5 minutes, which is much quicker than Bitcoin – where it takes around 10 minutes to generate one block.
Due to quick generation, Litecoin supports far more transactions than Bitcoin.
The overall cap limit of Litecoin is set at 84 million, which is relatively higher than that of Bitcoin’s (21 million).
The current market cap of Litecoin is about $175 million – making it the 4th largest cryptocurrency in the digital world.
With $170 USD market cap, Steem is the 5th largest digital currency. “Steemit” is the largest platform that offers the opportunity to earn Steem. The platform is filled with a huge range of stories.
Since there is no mining process, you can only earn Steem by contributing to “Steemit”, either by writing articles or rating/commenting on other’s articles.
The last one on our list is Dash, which, in terms of features is pretty close to Bitcoin software. Here are some unique features of Dash:
Advanced privacy. Some even say its privacy features surpass the ones offered by Bitcoin.
Whereas Bitcoin transactions can take several minutes, Dash transactions are quick and instant.
Low transaction fees.
Similar to Bitcoin, Dash is P2P and decentralized
Although the competition is tough, Bitcoin is leading the race by a fair margin and isn’t going away anytime soon. However, the other currencies are also there to stay and compete, which will surely play a significant role in the evolution of digital currency environment in near future.
Is this a Bitcoin or a Gold era? This question has stirred the people’s mind. Ironically, thebitcoin vs gold, Bitcoin values fluctuate as the gold values. Let’s clear one thing here, what is Gold and why did the Bitcoin and Gold prices cross?
Gold is basically the chemical element with atomic number 79 and has a physical worth. Whereas Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer currency in digital wallets. If we discuss the history of both the commodities, we come to know that Gold was traded by civilizations from 600 BC whereas Bitcoin usage started from 2009. However, only in few years 2009 to 2017, Bitcoin exchange prices have exceeded from zero to over $2000.
Bitcoin first captured the massive attention in media when its value raised to $1242 in November 2013. The price of gold was $1250 at that time. This was the time when the competition between gold and bitcoin began. Both values are fluctuating. Basically, this is a story of supply and demand which completely depends on the public’s demand. As we read in economics, higher the demand and lower the supply. So, we can say that Gold is rare but bitcoins are rarer because both have limited source. However, the mining process for both the commodities is different: hundreds of tons’ of Gold is mined every year through hardware processes like placer mining, hard rock mining, and gold ore processing. On the other hand, Bitcoin mining is the collection of bitcoins in exchange. By using specialized hardware, they make transactions clear and secure.
This comparison between Gold and Bitcoin is just a psychological more than anything. Because gold’s market value is $7, whereas Bitcoin’s value is $20 billion. But, Price of Bitcoin exceeded, is worth more than one ounce of Gold on 2 March 2017.
In addition, this comparison between both commodities is a positive sign for users. They can enjoy the fluctuations and new changes. But Bitcoin is a digital currency, it is not a commodity whereas gold has been known as a commodity for thousands of years.
Prices or values increase per ounce is not a big deal, and not that much important. However, everyone notices one thing that from 2009, Bitcoin is continually making its new highs every now and then. The purpose of comparing Bitcoin with gold is to provide complete satisfaction to its customer. Both Bitcoin and gold have a relationship in term of their prices. That’s why fluctuation in price creates a strong impact. There are more than 100,000 merchants who use Bitcoin for trade. Same with gold, millions of merchant still trade in gold.
After a series of ups and downs, bitcoin’s price went to its top. However, it plunged to less than half of that value later. The unexpected changes are now compared to the dot-com bubble and are highlighting the speculative nature of investing in cryptocurrency.
The price of bitcoin fell below $10,000 for the first, on December 1. At one point, it fell below $9,300 on one exchange. The price later rose back to almost $12,000, however, the investors and economists are still not sure how long the price will stay there. It is also said that the recent skim was due to the fear of crackdowns in the cryptocurrency markets.
South Korea has suggested a ban on the trading of cryptocurrency, although no plans are settled yet. Also, same news has been reported about China.
Bitcoin is a decentralized digital currency, as it is the largest and well-popular digital currency, that is globally bought and sold in exchanges.
According to Timothy Lee (senior reporter at Ars Technica), it is not based on dollars. The value of bitcoin floats against other cryptocurrencies, in the same way the euro and dollar glide against each other. Users say that bitcoin has got a very effective system for authenticating transactions, as it is based on a revolutionary technology.
Bitcoin users also point out that the currency is not tied to government’s whims and according to them, it’s a good thing. Recently the price dropped, and that may not be a good thing for those investors who are trying to figure out what crash actually means for the cryptocurrency’s future.
Recently many cryptocurrencies have shown the same swipes. According to David Kotok (Cumberland Advisors chairman and chief investment officer), almost 20 years ago, the technology and the new internet stocks accomplished valuation of $7 trillion, just because of speculation. The prices of shares used to be very high and after they collapsed, investors got badly miffed. And apparently, the same thing is going to happen with these cryptocurrencies.
Same rise and fall in the price of bitcoin was seen by the investors in December. After China announced that it was banning all the banks that were trading cryptocurrencies, bitcoin fell by 40 percent just within days after hitting a record price of almost $1,150.
There’ve been dramatic ups and downs in cryptocurrency’s price last year. Bitcoin had the value around $900 at the beginning of 2017, however, its value got tripled within few months. According to Kotok, cryptocurrencies are highly speculative and investing money in cryptocurrencies is a speculative thing to do. There’s a chance that you may make a profit, but Kotok has seen many people who invested their money into bitcoin and now they’re having loads of trouble in getting their cash back when they try to sell it.
According to some analysts, the cryptocurrency is trying to find an impermanent price floor, but according to a CNBC report, Citigroup analysts think that the price of bitcoin would plunge again to half of its current value. According to Ars Technica’s Lee, it’s still going to be unpredictable. She thinks it’ll go more up and then it’ll crash again. So, no one knows how far down it’ll decline.
Bitcoin is a peer to peer, decentralized digital currency. The currency is free from any third-party influence like governments, the central bank, or a governing authority. The currency promises to revolutionize the traditional way of spending money in near future.
Bitcoins are not real coins. It’s a currency that is based on a string of codes and locked with encryption keys. The transactions made through bitcoins leave no traces behind, giving those involved complete anonymity.
Buying bitcoins through cash can be confusing at times. Especially for those doing it for the first time. But don’t worry, we have compiled a list of Bitcoin cash exchanges that make the whole process simple and straightforward. The list includes:
LocalBitcoins is a reliable Bitcoin escrow service from where you can cash deposit or cash trade in person. A quick step by step guide on LocalBitcoins includes:
Find a local seller who is willing to trade in cash
Choose how many coins you want to buy
Receive seller’s account number
Deposit cash into seller’s account
Upload money-deposit-receipt as a proof
You are ready to receive bitcoins in your LocalBitcoin wallet
BitQuick connects you with sellers where you can pay with Bitcoin and buy products online. For now, BitQuick is only available in the US and works the following way.
First, you will need to find a seller
After finding a seller, discuss the price for bitcoins
Receive seller’s bank account number
Deposit cash into seller’s account
Upload receipt as a proof
Wall of Coins:
A peer to peer bitcoin exchange. Wall of Coins offers a number of bitcoin payment methods; however, the cash deposit is the most common method that they offer.
Wall of coins is one of the largest cash bitcoin exchange in the US with over 100,000 deposit locations across the country.
Apart from the US, it also operates in some major countries like Germany, Canada, Latvia, Poland, Argentina, etc.
LibertyX offers its services at a number of retail stores across the US. However, it requires the buyers to provide their identity which makes it less private compared to those mentioned above.
The maximum limit on buying bitcoins online from LibertyX is $1000, with 1% fee on each purchase.
One of the unique features of LIbertyX is that it grants $1000 worth of bitcoins for free to those who sign up through Facebook.
Bitcoins through ATM? Yes, you read it right. You can buy cryptocurrency through Bitcoin ATMs with only cash. Bitcoin ATMs require no verification, making it one of the most private ways of buying coins.
The average transaction fee through bitcoin ATMs is 5-10%, which is completely acceptable to those who want 100% privacy.
Bittrex is a USA based digital currency exchange that offers fast trade execution, protected wallets and cutting-edge security measures to ensure the safety of your funds. It is said to be supporting more than 190 cryptocurrencies with a market cap of $354,425,501.
Bitfinex is a cryptocurrency trading platform based in Hong Kong that offers peer-to-peer trading of all major cryptocurrencies. It’s known for its customizable interface, security and variety of digital currencies.
Bithumb is a Korean cryptocurrency exchange portal which is known for its reasonable price rates for bitcoin traders, ability to make quick real-time transactions and protection of every users’ assets with SMS verification. It is currently having a market cap of $314,531,860.
Kraken is a San Francisco based cryptocurrency exchange established in 2011. You can exchange multiple digital currencies as well as buy bitcoins. The currencies traded include Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Litecoin, Ripple, Ven, U.S. dollars, the Korean won and the euro. Moreover, Kraken is known for its security measures to prevent any sort of illegal activities to take place.
GDAX is a U.S. based exchange that offers a spontaneous, trusted and secure interface, along with full insurance of the funds held online. It is also backed up by major investors such as Union Square Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, and the New York Stock Exchange. Currently, the market cap of GDAX is at $104,995,957.
These are some of the top exchange bitcoin for USD through which you can buy coins. Each exchange has different terms and conditions for its users. Make sure you go through them carefully before acquiring their services.
On 27th March, a public statement was issued by Bitfinex, in which it stated that the platform won’t be supporting the “oil-backed” Petro token, which was launched in February by the Venezuela government.
Bitfinex is a Hong-Kong based crypto exchange trading as well as currency-storage platform, which was established in 2014 and since then, it’s been the largest platform for Bitcoin.
Bitfinex Blog Post
On Bitfinex, the statement was posted:
“The government of Venezuela (“GOV”) has recently introduced the Petro token (“PTR”), which purports to be a cryptocurrency backed by oil.”
In this blog post, which was posted on 27th March, the world’s number four crypto-exchange by trade volume (24-hour), clearly explained their decision, stating the fact that recently, the US had banned all of its citizens from buying Petro cryptocurrency, as well as other Venezuelan digital currencies similar to Petro that could be introduced anytime in future. It was written by the exchange that it perceives the coin as it has limited utility.
“We have never had plans to include the PTR or similar tokens in the Bitfinex trading platform. In light of the U.S. sanctions and the other clear sanctions risks of dealing in these products, Bitfinex will not list or transact the PTR or other similar digital tokens.”
According to the Bitfinex team, the limitations are not only applicable to the US clients, but also to the consumers of the platform. They are also linked to all of the activities on the platform, like;
The platform also further added that regardless of location, all of its employees and contractors are also banned from transacting in the Petro. This news from the crypto-exchange Bitfinex follows the latest exploratory work by “Time magazine” that connects the Petro cryptocurrency to the Russian government.
There is a huge bank of indications to advocate that this digital currency issued by Venezuelan is a Russian experiment in sanction dodging. According to Time Magazine, Russia have been considering to use cryptocurrency to dodge the sanctions globally, however, they decided to assess the idea in a state, when there’s very little to lose.