What is Cryptocurrency?
The question often asked is, “What is cryptocurrency?”
The European Banking Authority characterises cryptocurrency as a digital representation of worth, which not distributed by a central bank, affixed to a fiat exchange, or a public organisation. Instead, authorised persons or entities receive cryptocurrency as a means of payment for transactions. Owners of cryptocurrency are free to transfer, store, or trade it electronically, as they see fit.
Cryptocurrency is rooted in confirmation of transactions which independent individuals verify and record on a network called the blockchain. The blockchain is equivalent to a digitally shared register of all transactions and it holds information about each transaction from the very first to infinity.
Cryptocurrency removes a need for third party facilitators in transactions and puts individuals in command of their own assets. Each transaction recorded on the blockchain is both instant and irrevocable. Technology and the expanding of technological capabilities drive cryptocurrency. As technology continues to grow cryptocurrency will continue to grow.
What Can I Buy with Cryptocurrency?
The range of items purchasable with cryptocurrency is practically endless. Cryptocurrency is gaining popularity and acceptance so quickly that a simpler question would be “Is there anything that I can’t buy with cryptocurrency?”
The list of major retailers and smaller online shops accepting cryptocurrency is continually growing. This makes sense considering the ease and instantaneous transfer of cryptocurrencies; not accepting these coins would be a mistake.
At the time of writing (January 2017), the list is around 200, but the list is also always growing. Here is a list of a dozen major companies that accept cryptocurrency:
Virgin Galactic (the corporation includes Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Airline)
Most of these retailers are based in the U.S.A., but cryptocurrency in Australia is gaining popularity too. Amazon, for example, will be launching in Australia in late 2017 and is expected to accept cryptocurrency as a method of payment. In addition to online retailers, there are already a number of BitCoin ATMs in Australia, with that number growing rapidly every month.
If you are unsure, contact the company in question; if they are not accepting cryptocurrency, you may want to suggest that they start. There is more good news for those using digital currency. If there is a certain shop you like which does not accept cryptocurrency, eGifter.com accepts the digital currency, and they have hundreds of different gift cards available. This makes using cryptocurrency fast and simple and expands the list of places to use cryptocurrency.
What Types of Cryptocurrencies Exist?
As of mid-2016, there were over 740 different cryptocurrencies in existence. Many of these represent fledgling digital currency companies which are just beginning. With so many different cryptocurrencies, it is easy to confuse one with another. Some have specific spheres they operate in. Others have regionally specific origins like AsiaCoin or DubaiCoin. You really cannot accurately discuss various cryptocurrency companies without mentioning BitCoin. It is the originator of cryptocurrency, but like most initial entities, Bit Coin’s limitations inspired a multitude of others to come along and improve upon the foundation it established.
Here are a dozen of the top cryptocurrency Australia and international companies to date:
Cryptocurrency is truly up and coming in Australia. Until recently, the Australian federal government considered cryptocurrency as barter and not actual currency. This created an unbalanced tax position for those dealing with cryptocurrency. However, the Australian government has changed their view of cryptocurrency. In order to avoid any double taxation on those using digital currency, AML/CTF (Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act) regulations will apply to cryptocurrency.
By putting cryptocurrencies under AML regulations, the Australian government makes the currency safer in the eyes of those who may have been skeptical. This action will increase the use and acceptance of cryptocurrency in Australia; it will also open new opportunities for Australians because it is such a safe and easy way to transfer money and value. Using cryptocurrency will also assist in Australia’s plans of becoming a notable force in Financial Technology. Familiarising of cryptocurrency will help ease the country into accepting new products, processes and business models in the growing financial services industry. With the increased acceptance of Australia’s government, cryptocurrency will be an unstoppable wave of the very near future.
See also / One Coin World