Is it worth investing in Bitcoin for the long haul? Learn about the cryptocurrency and what makes it stand out as a potentially lucrative investment in 2018.
Three Things You Should Know About Investing In Bitcoin For 2018 & Beyond
From an investment standpoint, Bitcoin provides an interesting option. The cryptocurrency is still a bit of a question mark in the financial sector and looks to remain that way for the foreseeable future. Even still, Bitcoin is a highly traded stock and has risen in value quite drastically over the years. This post will cover the essential information required before you invest in the leading cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin Is Unregulated
Part of what makes Bitcoin so intriguing is the fact that it is not backed or regulated by a singular government or financial institution. This creates incentives for users because it means that any Bitcoin transaction will be conducted without being subject to additional fees or conversion rates. The currency operates on an open-source platform that utilizes blockchain technology to record its transactions. The blockchain serves as a public ledger that stores Bitcoin transaction information.
Inversely, some believe that Bitcoin’s decentralized status could lead to its downfall in the future. Since it is not a fiat currency or based on something of value like gold, some see Bitcoin as something of fickle value. All currency forms are worth what people perceive them to be, but Bitcoin’s lack of a formal structure leads some to doubt its stability.
Bitcoin Is Popular
Bitcoin has grown in popularity and usability since its introduction back in 2009. There are more Bitcoin-friendly options than ever, whether with online retailers that accept it outright or through exchange services. One industry that has seen a drastic spike in usability is online gambling. Many online gambling sites not only accept Bitcoin but encourage its use due to the speed of the transactions. Online gamblers prefer it because of its lack of regulation and for its security and speediness. Some good examples of where you can legally use Bitcoin for gambling can be found here: http://www.legalbitcoingambling.com/.
The cryptocurrency’s popularity has also reflected in its value. Currently, Bitcoin is worth roughly $2,700 a coin. This percentage valuation has increased exponentially since Bitcoin hit the market. In June 2017, the digital currency hit an all-time high near $3,000. This showcases how Bitcoin has grown in usability across different markets and points towards a sustainable future. While its value fluctuates as does gold or any other tradeable commodity, Bitcoin appears strong enough to continue its momentum.
Bitcoin’s Technology Is Applicable
Despite some doubts from certain parties, one aspect of Bitcoin has emerged as a point of interest—its blockchain. As previously mentioned, the blockchain effectively serves as a public ledger that tracks Bitcoin transactions. Each transaction is recorded in a “block” and once a particular block is full it is added to the end of the “chain”. Bitcoin miners then verify the transaction information, which includes the time and amount of each transaction, not the personal information of the parties involved.
Analysts see the potential of the blockchain system as a means for facilitating financial transactions in the future. The system is fast, secure and streamlined enough to complete the transaction with fewer parties involved. A universal blockchain system would shut out payment processors and other third-party entities. What does this mean for investing in Bitcoin? Well, if the blockchain system is picked up and applied more universally, it is likely Bitcoin will be picked up with it. In any case, more Bitcoin transactions will help build data regarding the blockchain—more transactions equal more value.
All in all, the cryptocurrency looks to be a sound investment. Investments have an inherent sense of instability, at least the more lucrative ones tend to, so Bitcoin’s decentralized platform should not deter you.
P.S. Looking for some helpful resources to help you get started with Bitcoin? Check out our resources page for more cool stuff.
Bitcoin is the leading cryptocurrency in a world that is fast evolving in connectivity and scale. Most people use Bitcoin for quick and secure transactions, however, there are there are literally hundreds (if not thousands) of uses for Bitcoin thanks to the Blockchain and its unique features that allow developers to build software on top of the currency.
Maybe you’re just getting to know Bitcoin. Or perhaps you already use Bitcoin and are looking for more options. Whatever the case may be for obtaining BTC, here are 10 smart ways you can use your hard-earned Bitcoins.
1. Use Bitcoin As An Investment Vehicle
When compared to other possible investment vehicles such as bonds, stocks, commodities, gold, and silver, Bitcoin is extremely flexible in what it can be used for. If one is to purely speculate on bitcoin as an investment (and ignore all of its other intangible benefits) the digital currency has great potential due to the limited supply cap of 21 million coins which will be reached in 2140. Each bitcoin should rise in value over time as long as more and more people continue to use them.
Keep in mind that the price of Bitcoin is quite volatile. Short term gains and losses will be plentiful in the future, though will likely smooth out. Bitcoin is still in its very early stages of development so investing in Bitcoin will reap the greatest returns as part of a long-term strategy. If you’re looking for a smart long-term strategy for an investment vehicle consider the benefits of a Bitcoin IRA.
2. Use Bitcoin As An Educational Tool
There is still a long way to go in terms of educating people on Bitcoin. The main purpose of Bitcoin has always been the innovative potential of the Blockchain. The blockchain allows people to take back full control of their lives, not just from a financial perspective, but also in the way people use services, technology, platforms and also how they view the world.
The inception of the idea for Bitcoin came out of the 2008 housing financial crisis. The idea was not only to create a new breed of disruptive technology but also to show everyday people that there are decentralized solutions available to enhance our lifestyles. And avoid fraud and corruption. In the case of hard times when the economy and local currency are struggling (due to inflation, credit bubbles, quantitative easing, etc), Bitcoin will be there as a handy alternative financial vehicle.
Most talk about bitcoin revolves around its usage as a monetary vehicle. There is a lot of room for improvement in the ease of use and access. Nevertheless, bitcoin is a fun tool to explain how the financial system can be changed – and possibly improved. Building on top of the blockchain technology, digital voting, negotiating contracts and signing and storing documents are just a few examples of Bitcoin’s educational potential as a means to improve our lifestyle.
3. Spend Bitcoins For Your Everyday Needs
First and foremost, Bitcoin is an alternative electronic form of payment. There are many benefits for why a retailer would accept Bitcoin. Lower costs, instantaneous transactions and virtually zero risks of fraud or chargebacks from a bank are just a sample of the benefits.
You may already notice that an increasing number of physical retailers and online merchants accept and use Bitcoin as payment. There is also a rising trend of Bitcoin ATM machines appearing in convenience stores & supermarkets all over the world.
This means that Bitcoins are being used as a viable form of money throughout the world. This also means that continuous commerce will be a major factor going forward towards growing both Bitcoin and all cryptocurrencies.
Many online stores (such as Expedia and Dell ) accept BTC in the same way that they accept credit cards. After all, why wouldn’t a retailer accept all forms of currency? A great way to shop smart using Bitcoin is to use a product search engine like Spendabit, which aggregates products from large, established Bitcoin-enabled vendors such as Overstock.com, Newegg, and Fancy.com.
If you are into food (and who isn’t) companies like Domino’s, Pizza Hut and Starbucks already accept Bitcoin payments for their services. We encourage you to do some exploring – both online and in the real world – and identify your favorite stores and brands that accept Bitcoin. The results may surprise you.
With so many different merchants accepting Bitcoin, many of which are everyday goods and services, it should only be a matter of time and word of mouth until Bitcoin becomes mainstream. Find bitcoin shops, markets and links.
FUN FACT: The first purchase ever made using bitcoin was for a pizza delivery worth 10,000 BTC.
4. Indulge In Luxury Expenses With Bitcoin
For those who may already lead an active and luxurious lifestyle, there are a plethora of options for indulging with Bitcoins such as flights and hotel bookings. While not every vacation or flight can be paid for with Bitcoin just yet, there is already a multitude of services at your disposal to expedite the process, such as BTCtrip.
With more options and flexibility, this just goes to show that Bitcoin acceptance is beneficial for both merchants and consumers.
5. Support Charities With Bitcoin
One of the greatest, most important aspects of life is having the opportunity to do social good for others who may need it most. Many charities accept Bitcoin including Wikipedia, Red Cross and Green Peace. The best part about donating with Bitcoin is that you do not have to go through a third party organization to ensure that your contribution gets to its destination safely. As a result, your funds will also get there faster and effectively help more people in the process.
6. Gamble Online
Bitcoin is an excellent alternative payment method when compared to credit cards and bank transfers. For starters, transactions are anonymous and can not be traced by a third party. This means there’s no need to share personal information or verify your identity. The nature of the bitcoin system is also non-refundable, so it just may be a smarter option for serious gamblers. Online bitcoin gambling sites include BitCasino, Fortune Jack, Oshi, Bit Games, and Mars Casino.
Warning: Be sure to check your local laws regarding online gambling and sports betting before participating in such services.
7. Invest In Precious Metals
Although exchanging Bitcoins for precious metals such as gold and silver can technically be construed as moving value from one investment vehicle to another, the idea itself isn’t so farfetched. Many people view Bitcoin as the digital cryptocurrency equivalent of Gold. It’s not a coincidence that they both have a limited total supply and need time to mine.
In addition, there are a number of online platforms that let users trade bitcoin against the value of precious metals as a form of day trading. This means it’s possible for people who mine Bitcoin to receive their value in gold rather than BTC. Remember to do your own research before trading and trusting just any platform. For those interested, top Bitcoin to precious metal trading platforms include Vaultoro, Uphold and Goldmoney.
8. Give It Away To A Friend Or Family Member
One of the great joys of Bitcoin is teaching a friend or family member how to use it. If you have successfully created a bitcoin wallet and moved BTC into it, congratulations you know more about how to use Bitcoin than most of the world does. All that’s left to do is to grab a friends phone, install a wallet for them and send them a small amount of bitcoin to get them started. After you learn the fundamentals of Bitcoin, there is still a whole world of cryptocurrency and blockchain uses to explore. As of this writing, Bitcoin is approximately 60% of the entire crypto market capitalization.
There are several gift card sites that allow you to exchange bitcoin for gift cards such as Gyft and eGifter. There is also another iOS app soon to come out, Birthday which lets you send Bitcoins to anyone around the world as a digital gift!
9. Pay Bills
How awesome would it be to pay for bills using cryptocurrency? The types of service bills you are able to pay for with Bitcoin depend largely on your location. However, in the not too distant future phone bills, utility bills, and mortgage bills will be paid in Bitcoin. It is already possible to recharge prepaid phones using Bitcoin Top Up services such as Bitrefill, BitMoby or Bitkoyn.
10. Start Your Own E-Commerce Store
So if physical retailers are beginning to accept Bitcoin payments, what does that mean for online e-commerce?
Although Amazon does not yet accept Bitcoin payments storewide, it is still possible to pay with Bitcoin by purchasing Amazon digital gift cards through a service such as RewardsPay, which can then be used to make purchases on Amazon.com. But imagine what would happen if a global behemoth retailer such as Amazon did accept Bitcoins?
Even though the largest online marketplace does not yet accept Bitcoins, savvy merchants and entrepreneurs still have excellent alternatives. For one, did you know that Shopify merchants can accept Bitcoin as a form of payment? Shopify is the fastest growing e-commerce platform by a wide margin and is super simple to navigate and set up. Individual merchants looking for more customization, perhaps on their website, also have a plethora of WordPress plugins to choose from. If you enjoy selling stuff as opposed to buying things then there is ample opportunity to earn Bitcoins online.
And of course, one could simply accept donations from the goodwill of others by publicly sharing their wallet address or QR code.
In conclusion, Bitcoin has the potential to disrupt how humans transact value to one another across the world. The value of Bitcoin will depend on what the people think of it and how they use it. But once you have some you are a member of the ecosystem. Since Bitcoin is a safe, fast and decentralized form of currency, it will definitely be interesting to see what types of services come about in the future. When it comes to retailers, merchants and people all around the world adopting BTC as a form of payment, time and education are the major variables. And remember, as an investor, it is always better to have a boat ready when the rising tide comes.
Retailers, merchants, and people all around the world will slowly adopt BTC as a form of payment, where time and education are the major variables to its success. So if you are still wondering if Bitcoin is a once in a lifetime opportunity remember, as an investor, it is always better to have a boat when the rising tide comes.