Cryptocurrency has been making headline news for quite some time now. As has all the complex terminology surrounding the whole blockchain landscape, along with the controversy attached to certain types of crypto coins on the bitcoin marketplace environment.
In particular, the fact that Bitcoin continues to break all-time records with its ludicrous value is prompting more people than ever before to take an interest in crypto. Having once sold for less than $4 each, a single Bitcoin at the time of writing is worth just over $58,000.
For those who made the right choice at the right time, this amounts to a pretty monumental profit in a seriously short space of time.
But how and why exactly did cryptocurrency come about in the first place? More importantly, what kind of role can we expect crypto to play in the future of global currency in general?
Bitcoin Marketplace Basics – What is a Cryptocurrency?
In the simplest possible terms, cryptocurrency is a form of virtual currency that has no physical form. It is completely decentralized and is therefore neither monitored nor managed by any central bank or government worldwide. Cryptocurrency exists exclusively as a digital asset, enabling seamless peer-to-peer transactions to take place with no middleman involvement.
Much of the appeal of cryptocurrencies lies in the fact that no singular authority has any direct control over them. This in turn creates a uniquely secure and discreet form of currency, which also offers a robust protection against fraud. It also means that the value of any given cryptocurrency will not be affected by social, economic or political events taking place anywhere in the world at the time.
Where Did Cryptocurrency Come From?
Money has been used to facilitate trading for more than 5000 years, originally existing in the form of salt and other spices. Physical currency (such as coins) made its way into the mix over the centuries that followed – a principle which would then remain unchanged for thousands of years.
Even when cashless forms of payment (like credit cards and debit cards) were introduced, they still operated on the basis of the holder’s ownership of physical currency.
Long before Bitcoin was ever a thing, the very first forms of genuine digital money were introduced in the 1990s. Digicash, B-Money and Bit Gold were three of the earliest forms of digital currency, which like today’s crypto were designed with the intention of augmenting the need for conventional cash.
Given the fact that you probably haven’t heard of any of these three, it goes without saying that they were not particularly popular. Nevertheless, they are credited even to this day with inspiring the modern cryptocurrency concept, effectively sowing the seeds for something bigger and better to come.
A Brief History of Bitcoin
It was in early January 2009 that Satoshi Nakamoto officially mined the very first Bitcoin. At the time, the value of his fledgling cryptocurrency was too small to realistically measure. Incredibly, the first ever genuine Bitcoin transaction involved the purchase of two pizzas by Laszlo Hanyecz.
This happened in March 2010, when he paid 10,000 Bitcoins for his takeout. Today, these same Bitcoins would be worth just over $5.8 billion.
Bitcoin’s explosive growth in value is attributed to the simple fact that it is the first form of cryptocurrency the world is actually taking seriously. Accessibility has also played a major role in its popularity, with innovative platforms like Bitpatt making it quick and easy for newcomers and existing traders alike to buy and sell Bitcoins.
Right now, there are more than 2,700 different forms of cryptocurrency in existence being traded worldwide. The fact that you rarely hear of any other than Bitcoin illustrates both its popularity and the reason why it has seen such monumental growth in value.
A Cryptocurrency-Based Future?
Truth is, nobody really knows the extent to which crypto will play a role in the global economy going forward. This alone is the primary reason why assets like Bitcoin remain so volatile. Whereas some see the value of Bitcoin bursting beyond $200,000 within the next couple of years, other expect it to plummet with equal ferocity.
Nevertheless, the fact that cryptocurrency is such a popular concept means we are guaranteed to be seeing a lot more of it over the years to come. Digital transactions are already the norm for most consumers and businesses, meaning a viable form of digital currency simply makes sense.
Bitcoin Marketplace Basics – Last words
Particularly one that doesn’t fall within the remit of any major authority and brings the security of anonymous transactions and robust protection from fraud.