Bitcoin Features

Bitcoin Features

Decentralized

One of Satoshi Nakamoto’s main goals when creating Bitcoin was the network’s independence from any government authority. It is designed so that any person, company becomes part of an immense network through the computation they use in the mining process and the verification of transactions. Also, even if a part of the network goes down, the money will keep moving.

Anonymity

These days, banks know everything about their customers: credit history, addresses, phone numbers, spending habits, etc. Likewise, the digitized system governed by Google and Facebook manages to track all our actions with just a couple of clicks. Everything is very different if we use Bitcoin since the wallet we have to store and spend our coins is not linked to any personal information.

The anonymity of Bitcoin is relative, as every BTC transaction that has ever happened is stored on the Blockchain. In theory, if your wallet address was used publicly, anyone can tell how much money is in it by carefully studying the blockchain ledger. However, tracing a particular Bitcoin address to a person is still almost impossible.

Those who wish to remain anonymous with their transactions can take steps to stay under the radar. Certain wallets prioritize opacity and security, but the simplest measure would be to use multiple addresses and not transfer large amounts of money to a single wallet.

Transparency

As we mentioned earlier, transactions within the Bitcoin Blockchain network are kept within a Public Book recorded on the Blockchain and visible to everyone. This implies that all operations within the network are visible but what cannot be traced is the particular property of each Bitcoin that people have within the network.

Speed

The operations within the Bitcoin Blockchain network are intended to be resolved in a matter of minutes, regardless of where the participating parties of the operation are located. Compared to national and international banking services, Bitcoin has a considerable advantage from the point of view of the speed of the execution of transactions.

Irreversible

Once a transaction is made within the Bitcoin Blockchain, there is no way to reverse it. This feature can be a double-edged sword that we must use with great care. On the one hand, it is positive since we can be sure that each Bitcoin we receive cannot be returned to the person who sent it to us, but we must understand that this feature can also harm us when we send our Bitcoin to another address. . It is advisable to verify that everything is correct before carrying out any operation.

What can I buy with Bitcoin?

In 2009, when Bitcoin was first introduced, it was not very clear how and where it could be spent. Now, you can buy practically everything. For example, giant companies like Microsoft and Dell accept payments in BTC for a variety of their products and digital content. You can fly with airlines like AirBaltic and Air Lithuania, buy theatre tickets through UK Theater Tickets Direct, get a few bottles of craft beer from Honest Brew, and you can buy on Amazon thanks to the Lightning Network and so on.

Other options include:

  • Paying for hotels and buying properties.
  • Collecting bills at various bars and restaurants.
  • Joining a dating site.
  • Buying a gift card.
  • Placing a bet at an online casino.
  • Donating for a good cause.

There is also a surge of diverse online marketplaces, trading in everything from illegal substances to high-end luxury goods.

Bitcoin is a relatively new and quite complex form of payment, so it is only natural that the options are still limited. Every day, more and more companies, from small local coffee shops to industry giants, accept payments in BTC.

In addition, due to its exchange rate that is constantly fluctuating, Bitcoin became an excellent investment opportunity. Many investors have looked to take advantage of this volatility to profit during each rise or fall in Bitcoin prices compared to FIAT currencies.

How to get Bitcoin?

The simplest way to get a Bitcoin is to buy it with FIAT coins. Bitcoin is available on almost all exchanges on the market, but it can also be purchased through a Bitcoin ATM or on Peer-to-Peer portals where it is traded with users’ offers. The options available for purchaser Bitcoin are very varied: Cash, bank transfers, credit cards, balance in online payment platforms such as PayPal or MercadoPago and many other options.

Not long ago, in May 2010, a systems analyst named Laszlo Hayeck, who lived in Louisville, USA, ordered two pizzas over the phone and paid for them with a coin that was beginning to circulate.

He was fortunate, or not, that whoever took the order accepted the payment with Bitcoins (BTC). They agreed, and for that $ 30 consumption, Hayeck paid 10,000 BTC.

It was far from assuming that only seven years later, those 10,000 virtual currencies, which at that time were trading at $ 0.003 each, would reach their all-time high of no less than about $ 5,000. In other words, they were valued no less than 1.7 million times.

If Hayeck had kept them in his possession instead of eating pizza, today he would have amassed a fortune, which came to be 50 million dollars, equivalent to 3.3 million pizzas. What is a mystery is what the pizzeria owner did with those Bitcoins, but that is another story.

Now, the usual question in these cases is precise: what is a Bitcoin?

Without going into technicalities, it can be said that it is a currency that arises from a “Bitcoin Protocol” published in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto, a unique character whose true identity to this day no one knows. So much so that several names of possible candidates emerged over the years, and it was even speculated that the CIA itself was behind all this.

Bitcoin was born with high ambitions: to provide a fast, low-cost means of payment that cannot be controlled or manipulated.

The truth is that Nakamoto originally stated that “Bitcoin was born with high ambitions: to provide citizens with a means of payment that enables the execution of fast value transfers, at low cost and that, in addition, cannot be controlled or manipulated by governments, central banks or financial entities.”

In practice, it is a virtual currency acquired through Web platforms and stored in virtual wallets; For its defenders, its main virtue is the possibility of making all kinds of transactions globally anonymously and securely, and above all at a very low cost.

Although it also allows a wide range of commercial operations to be carried out, its main application is financial, since the enormous volatility of its price is a determining factor for those who buy and sell goods and services with it.

To reference the almost instantaneous variations of its price, it is worth mentioning that its price went from US $ 500 in September of last year to the US $ 5,000 in August of this year, with deep oscillations along the way.

Perhaps Nakamoto’s great discovery, whoever he may be, is the idea of ​​a decentralized “major newspaper” since no single global control body manages and accounts for the millions of transactions carried out daily.

That task is in the hands of the so-called “miners,” who are in charge of “extracting” the Bitcoins from the mines. In other words, Nakamoto devised a system called “blockchain,” according to which all the information is condensed into blocks that in turn form chains, each one being unique and unrepeatable, which gives certainty and confidence to each operation.

The function of the miners is precisely to decipher in less than ten minutes a complicated algorithm that goes along with each block and, as a reward for their work, in case of being successful and mining the information, they receive as a reward up to 12.5 Bitcoins.

“Whoever enters this market must do so knowing that they are running a risk that must be evaluated before making a decision.”

Regarding the future of this coin and the almost 500 that compete today in the market, opinions are very contradictory, ranging from the disappearance of the coin to exceptional values due to their magnitude.

In this sense, not a few analysts consider that it is in the presence of a huge bubble, which can be estimated in the order of US $ 150,000 million. In this sense, they argue that the violent rise in prices does nothing but support the idea.

In any case, statistics show that, in just three years, the advance in prices was similar to what happened over ten years on Wall Street, which ended with the implosion of the so-called “dot.com” companies at the beginning of 2000.

Not for nothing, in recent weeks, several of the main central banks in the world, such as those of China, Russia, and recently that of England, began to issue a series of warnings about the effects that the massive use of cryptocurrencies could have; and they seek to stop the advance of new issues, in the form of the so-called ICOs (Initial Coin Offer).

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