There are various innovative money payment systems in the market today, many of which are built on platforms like the mobile phone, the Internet, and the digital storage card.
These alternative payment systems have seen encouraging or even continued growth, from the likes of PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Wallet, Alipay, Tenpay, Venmo, M-Pesa, BitPay, Moven, BitPesa, PayLah!, Dash, FAST, Transferwise, and others.
Beyond payment systems that are based on fiat currency, the growing use of digital currency allows for faster, more flexible, and more innovative payments and ways in financing goods and services.
One digital currency, however, stands out among the rest.
Bitcoin is one of the most well-known digital currencies today. To be specific, Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency, which is a subset of what is generally known as a digital currency.
Bitcoin is a unique cryptocurrency that is widely considered to be the first of its kind.
Like many created after it, Bitcoin uses the power of the Internet to process its transactions.
This chapter introduces the characteristics and features of Bitcoin and sets the stage for further discussion of cryptocurrencies in the rest of this book.
According to CoinMetrics and Forbes, on 11 March 281,000 bitcoins were sold by owners who held them for only thirty days. This compared to 4,131 bitcoins that had laid dormant for a year or more indicating that the vast majority of the bitcoin volatility on that day was from recent buyers.
During the week of 11 March 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic cryptocurrency exchange Kraken experienced an 83% increase in the amount of account signups over the week of bitcoin’s price collapse, a result of buyers looking to capitalize on the low price.