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Bitcoin is defined as an electronic currency, cryptocurrency or digital currency that works just like the dollar, the Canadian dollar, the euro, or any other currency in the world.
It was conceived and developed in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto, a person of unknown identity who uses this pseudonym in the public eye, thus maintaining their privacy.
As it is an innovative system that goes beyond traditional payment method schemes, controversy has always surrounded Bitcoin on multiple fronts.
What are main characteristics of Bitcoin?
It is a currency “without official endorsement”, that is no government or central bank has made it official or endorsed its use explicitly.
However, despite not having a governing body behind it, the technology that this “blockchain” cryptocurrency uses makes it difficult to falsify and totally open to the public, with a record of all transactions.
Another of its great characteristics is the enormous fluctuation it undergoes, since its price is traded 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. This encourages large communities of traders, who buy and sell this virtual currency.
Over the past few years, Bitcoin has undergone its biggest changes since inception, with a huge rise in late 2017 and early 2018 that caused quite a stir accompanied by a decline and a period of current stability.
Currently, there are many companies that already allow the use of bitcoins in their online stores, something that many economic powers do not look on favorably. The same school of thought does not run through gambling houses, however, where Bitcoin is a common payment method.
The truth is that conducting an exhaustive analysis of this cryptocurrency is a very complicated task given the lack of similar cases in economic history and its profile as a developing currency.
Where do you buy Bitcoins?
The safest and most reliable way to buy Bitcoins is through exchange houses via your bank account. It is very simple, since it works like many other online servers.
First you must register and deposit money in your account to later exchange it for bitcoins. There are more than 300 exchange houses, which use P2P (peer-to-peer) technology for you to purchase bitcoins. The most famous and well-known exchange house, which is also promoted by the official Bitcoin page, is probably Paxful.
Within this exchange house, you can deposit money through PayPal, your bank account, Amazon cards, Skrill, Western Union, and more than 100 different payment methods adapted to each user.
Once the money has entered your account, you can automatically change it for the corresponding amount of bitcoins. In addition to this, there are many other exchange houses such as Cryptoder, Bit2Me, and CoinBase.
What are the advantages of using Bitcoins?
- Speed: One of the main virtues of Bitcoin is speed. In just 15 minutes, a transaction can be made between accounts regardless of quantity or distance
- Cheap: Commissions are either zero or very low, even if it is a transaction between different countries
- Security: It is impossible to forge a bitcoin without the network detecting it, so security is very high. Furthermore, all transactions are public, anonymous, and transparent
- Global system: There are no geographical or political restrictions, so it can be used anywhere on the planet
- Previously regulated: Nobody can change the conditions of Bitcoin, which have been set since its creation and development by consensus. These could only change if the majority of users accepted this change
- Divisible currency: This currency can currently go up to 8 decimal places, a figure that could be increased in the future. This is a great way to make micropayments
- Open source: Any user is free to see the source code of the cryptocurrency, and with it propose changes and improvements. This helps it operate in a transparent system
- 24/7: It is available 365 days an year, 24 hours per day
What are the disadvantages of using Bitcoins?
- Volatility: The value of this electronic currency can undergo great changes in just a matter of seconds, making it very susceptible to speculation
- Scarce use in casinos: As a new system with little support from official organizations, there are still few online casinos that offer the use of Bitcoin
- Anonymity: The anonymity it offers could be used to carry out illegal activities
- Lack of acceptance risk: There is a risk that the currency, due to a lack of general acceptance, will end up falling in volume of use while its value drops to zero
- In general, risk: Like any monetary operation, this one has its risks, which are greater than those of other traditional currencies