Bitcoin is, without a doubt, the trendiest and most popular virtual currency in the world, but Nobel Prize-winning economist and Princeton professor Paul Krugman doesn’t think it should be. While Bitcoin, often referred to by its acronym BTC, is just one of thousands of virtual currencies, it is very, very often conflated with anything related to blockchain. It’s easy to understand why: BTC is the priciest, most-traded cryptocurrency out there and the granddaddy of all other cryptocurrencies. However, much has changed since 2009 when BTC was first launched; the blockchain space has experienced major expansion and diversification to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. We’re in the middle of a crypto revolution and while Bitcoin is important, its sun is setting.
Bitcoin’s utility in 2018 is meager compared to its inspirational value. Bitcoin’s role today might be analogous to another innovation in history: the Model T.
In 1908 Henry Ford shocked the world when he released the first commercially-available automobile, the Model T. At the time, the Model T was both unrivaled and on the cutting edge of a nascent industry. Over a century later in the era of Teslas, you’d look pretty ridiculous driving a Model T down the street. Likewise, crypto moves quickly — ask anyone in the industry.
In its decade of existence BTC, might as well have aged a 100 years. Today, Bitcoin is the same it was in 2009, only now with over 4,000 competitors. So while it is critical to acknowledge that, sans Model T there would be no Tesla, it is also true that the heyday of the Model T — the heyday of Bitcoin — is long gone.
Well if there’s more to blockchain than Bitcoin, queries the aspirational crypto novice, what more is there? And how much? The answer is everything under the sun.
The brilliance of Bitcoin was that it emerged as the world’s only stable currency without government support or intervention. While that may sound like a bad business model, governments, like large corporations, are omnipotent when it comes to cash. Take the U.S. Federal Reserve, which inflates and deflates the dollar at its convenience by controlling interest rates and currency volume. One boneheaded (or coldly-calculated) move could plunge the currency — and those dependent on it — into a deep depression. Emulating the essential mission of Bitcoin, a multitude of cryptocurrencies, called “altcoins”, have emerged. These altcoins seek to exclude middlemen (such as the government) in unique ways. Music streaming services sprang up looking to cut out controlling record companies and royalty societies. Tokenized medical startups began to threaten the entrenched evils of Big Pharma. At Host.Games, we are tackling a niche challenge of our own: the deeply-flawed world of online gaming.
Our native cryptocurrency, the HOST token, is set to debut in the coming months. We seek to solve what we see as the most widespread and pressing problems in the gambling industry by building our platform on the blockchain. The HOST token will power a peer-to-peer gaming network that does not rely on corporate casino empires such as Wynn or Stars and eliminates widespread player collusion and bot interference. However, our protocol wouldn’t even exist without Bitcoin. So, difficult as it is to admit, we love BTC too.
Though the golden days of Bitcoin are behind us, the golden years of blockchain are just around the corner. Everyday more and more ambitious ICO’s disrupt industries by making people’s lives easier. BTC is largely to thank for that, but pouring your money into Bitcoin today or tomorrow or next month would be buying into the world’s most expensive anachronism.