Africa on Cryptocurrency
Does anyone remember how hard it has been for people to embrace the internet in Africa. Once anyone mentioned about the internet particularly in my home country Zimbabwe, they could give you a lecture that the internet was a bad place one could be. Little did we know that this was a tool that could be used by anyone to change their life. Yet some still relate it to Illuminati. Its a shame.
Today as I write this article a lot of African fellows have heard about Cryptocurrencies, or at least the popular one Bitcoin, but most have never dived deep to see how this can change their life. Is it ignorance? Well seems everyone is still enjoying the hard ways of doing business. Trust me, life was not designed so that you can struggle in doing some tasks. You have the brains and every other God given gift. Please use them!
So I have decided to break down everything so simple so that even a 7 year can understand what Cryptocurrencies are, and as we go further, we will dive deeper into the ocean to learn more.
What is a Cryptocurrency?
Cryptocurrency is money. That’s it, no further explanation. So just like any other currency that you use, the United States Dollar(USD), South African Rand(ZAR) or the British Pound(GBP), cryptocurrency operates pretty the same way. But wait! So why was it named Cryptocurrency?
So there is also a huge difference between the money that we use to transact daily and cryptocurrencies.
- Cryptocurrencies are not tangible(You can not have any in your pocket)
- Cryptocurrencies can only be used over the internet.
Although there are so many differences, I decided to leave them to these two(remember I want the 7 year old to understand). You may be asking a question, how does it differ from internet banking and mobile banking like Ecocash. Sounds pretty the same thing here!
The Beauty of Cryptocurrencies
Our financial system is based on central banking. There is a guy who controls everything at the centre(Bank), how you transact, how much you can transact and how much he can take away from you for keeping your money for you. I remember when I left $50 in my bank account only to come back a month later to see $45. Wait, what? I’m charged for keeping my money in the bank.
With cryptocurrencies, the case is different. No one controls cryptocurrencies. Yes, not a single person. So cryptocurrencies are decentralized. There is no guy out there who controls your money. Your money is yours to decide how you want to use it, that means you are anonymous. Cryptocurrencies have relatively the lowest charges for transfer and transaction. It is as low as 0.01%. That’s even interesting.
Before I finish off my introduction to Cryptocurrencies, one needs to understand how it is possible to have a decentralized currency. This would be difficult to explain without mentioning Blockchain. Blockchain is the backbone for any cryptocurrency you may think of. In simple terms, Blockchain is an open ledger. An open ledger is self explanatory, its a ledger that is open to everyone. Everyone can take account of what has happened and verify transactions.
In the next article I will dive into the Blockchain and how it works. Until next time.