What exactly is Bitcoin and Is It a smart investment?

lara.kitarova
Jul 13, 2016 · 3 min read

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Bitcoin (BTC) is really a new sort of digital currency-with cryptographic keys-that is decentralized to a network of computers utilized by users and miners all over the world and is not controlled by a single organization or government. It is the first digital cryptocurrency which has gained the public’s attention and it is accepted with a growing quantity of merchants. Like other currencies, users can use the digital currency to buy products or services online plus some physical stores that accept it as a form of payment. Currency traders also can trade Bitcoins in Bitcoin exchanges.

There are many major differences between Bitcoin and traditional currencies (e.g. U.S. dollar):

Bitcoin doesn’t have a centralized authority or clearing house (e.g. government, central bank, MasterCard or Visa network). The peer-to-peer payment network is managed by users and miners around the world. The currency is anonymously transferred directly between users online without dealing with a clearing house. This means that transaction fees tend to be lower.
Bitcoin is created through a process called “Bitcoin mining”. Miners all over the world use mining software and computers to fix complex bitcoin algorithms and also to approve Bitcoin transactions. They’re given transaction fees and new Bitcoins produced by solving Bitcoin algorithms.
There can be a limited amount of Bitcoins in circulation. In accordance with Blockchain, there have been about 12.1 million in circulation at the time of Dec. 20, 2013. The problem to mine Bitcoins (solve algorithms) becomes harder weight loss Bitcoins are generated, and also the maximum amount in circulation is limited to 21 million. The limit won’t be reached until approximately the entire year 2140. As a result Bitcoins more valuable weight loss people make use of them.
A public ledger called ‘Blockchain’ records all Bitcoin transactions and shows each Bitcoin owner’s respective holdings. Everyone can connect to the public ledger to ensure transactions. This will make a digital currency more transparent and predictable. Moreover, the transparency prevents fraud and double spending of the identical Bitcoins.
The digital currency can be acquired through Bitcoin mining or Bitcoin exchanges.
The digital currency is accepted with a select few of merchants on the web and in a few brick-and-mortar retailers.
Bitcoin wallets (similar to PayPal accounts) can be used for storing Bitcoins, private keys and public addresses as well as for anonymously transferring Bitcoins between users.
Bitcoins usually are not insured and aren’t paid by government agencies. Hence, they cannot be recovered when the secret keys are stolen by way of a hacker or lost with a failed hard disk drive, or as a result of closure of your Bitcoin exchange. When the secret keys are lost, the associated Bitcoins cannot be recovered and will be from circulation. Visit this link with an FAQ on Bitcoins.

I believe that Bitcoin will gain in acceptance in the public because users usually stay anonymous while buying services and goods online, transactions fees are much lower than charge card payment networks; the public ledger is available by anyone, which you can use to stop fraud; the currency supply is capped at 21 million, as well as the payment network is run by users and miners rather than a central authority.

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