Basics: Application

How can cryptocurrency be used?

While cryptocurrency uses were limited during the concept’s infancy, Bitcoin’s revolutionary assets as a digital currency medium quickly caught the attention of consumers and retailers. Its growing popularity has seen the market adjust accordingly, and now cryptocurrency can perform much like fiat, while also providing more opportunities for its users.

Just like regular currency, many see cryptocurrency as an opportunity to get rich through investment and trade, with its markets offering comparatively volatile price fluctuations and high risk and reward scenarios. Others understand the fast-changing landscape cryptocurrency also offers other uses through its wide range of potential uses beyond tender.

Decentralisation makes a lack of transfers fees one of cryptocurrency’s greatest assets, attracting people to convert their fiat currency for the purpose of transfer. There are examples of users converting millions of dollars of currency to cryptocurrency to transfer to other accounts, and completing transactions in a matter of minutes while only accumulating transaction fees of less than a dollar.

This significant departure from traditional banking operations is one of many reasons regular users are attracted to cryptocurrency.
Its resilience to banking and government censorship also makes it an attractive alternative storage option.

Bank accounts can be frozen, but cryptocurrency wallet owners, specifically private key holders, are the only people able to access the assets belonging to those accounts.

It means cryptocurrency belonging to the owners of those private keys can never be accessed, frozen or taken away by anyone but the person with access to the wallet.

Can cryptocurrency change the way business works?

Cryptocurrency is also having an impact in the business world, specifically with the raising and accumulation of start-up capital.
Tech startups in particular have been essentially creating their own types of cryptocurrencies in the form of tokens and offering them to potential investors.

The newly created coins can accumulate value with market hype, media coverage and business performance, offering the start ups an opportunity to accumulate capital by selling their tokens.

These types of start up capital ventures are traditionally a fiat concept and usually heavily monitored and reliant on experienced venture capitalists often charging heavy fees.

Now, anyone with an internet connection can launch a start-up initial coin offering. While cryptocurrency is only strictly taxed in a very few countries, capital gains and converted fiat currency profits made from cryptocurrency are still quite often held to scrutiny by governments.

However, there are still benefits for businesses interested in utilising cryptocurrency. Like private owners, businesses can also make large money transfers using cryptocurrency and avoid having to explain or justify money movement to a banking institution.

Banks often require explanations regarding the source and destination of large amounts of funds, usually requiring unnecessary bureaucratic processes and delaying transactions for days.

Is it available for everyday use?

While cryptocurrency has potential in performing all sorts of tasks, its credentials as a form of exchangeable commodity for fiat currency or goods and services is the cornerstone of its reason for existence.
It is the reason cryptocurrency was first programmed into existence, and while it is yet to be adopted for use by most spenders, it is fast moving into the mainstream.

More and more cryptocurrency users are not only accumulating and storing their coins, but they are demanding better access for everyday use. This has seen new innovation in retail technology and spending habits not seen since the advent of digital transactions and credit card payments.

For example, there are apps and card payment platforms available specifically for spending cryptocurrency for day-to-day purchases, like food shopping, clothing and even parking meters.

Much of the innovations has come on the back of endorsement and active promotion from larger companies on the benefits of cryptocurrency use, and their ability to accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment.

The card payment systems and ‘tap’ technology available for fiat currency and credit transactions is also possible with cryptocurrency, thanks to the world’s major credit card companies following the trends of major retailers and endorsing cryptocurrency use.

While Visa and Mastercard were reluctant during the earliest stages of cryptocurrency’s status as a usable large-scale commodity, like much of the market endorsements come when they realised there was a way of profiting from the cryptocurrency revolution.

Today, cryptocurrency users are capable of spending certain types of cryptocurrency wherever these cards are accepted in the same way customers ‘tap’ their cards to spend their fiat currency.

Next step: Getting started