Malta Entrepreneur has Installed the Country’s First Cryptocurrency ATM

Malta Entrepreneur has Installed the Country's First Cryptocurrency ATM

Malta Entrepreneur has Installed the Country’s First Cryptocurrency ATM

A Malta entrepreneur has installed the country’s first cryptocurrency ATM. The installation has occurred just days after local media reported that a start-up had launched a crowdfunding campaign to finance the country’s first bitcoin ATM.

The Cryptocurrency ATM Has Been Installed Days After a Crowdfunding Campaign Was Launched to Fund a Rival Terminal

A local Malta entrepreneur, Gabriel Cretu Torica, has installed the country’s first cryptocurrency ATM. The terminal has been installed outside a store in Sliema and facilitates bitcoin purchases and balances checks via QR codes.

 

Mr. Torica discussed the advantages of bitcoin and the speed of cryptocurrency ATMs, telling local media that “online exchanges often ask for ID verification, and that can waste up to 24 hours”. Mr. Torica also believes that the bitcoin ATM will inspire greater adoption of bitcoin in Malta. “Many people are still suspicious of bitcoin… I’m sure this will change over time as people realize the benefits”, he said.
 

Ivaj, a start-up and bitcoin cryptocurrency advocacy group championing bitcoin adoption throughout Malta, had already started a crowdfunding campaign seeking to raise finances for the purchase and installation of the island’s first cryptocurrency ATM. The crowdfunding campaign hopes to raise $6,000, with plans to install a second bitcoin ATM if more money than requested is received. If the campaign falls short Ivaj co-founder, Leon Siegmund, has pledged to provide the remaining required funds. Mr. Torica has stated that his bitcoin ATM had already been purchased but not installed when he heard about the crowdfunding campaign – which prompted him to contact local press.
 

The crowdfunding campaign is still active and has so far raised 6% of its total goal, currently having raised $368 from only 6 backers. The campaign will finish approximately one month from today. “We believe in Bitcoin’s potential and decided to invest time and effort in bringing the first Bitcoin ATM to Malta in order to unleash these opportunities to individuals, and society as a whole,” Leon Siegmund previously told The Times of Malta. “We’ve already identified a few potential locations, but it’s too early to discuss them now. What I can say is that it will either be in Valletta or in Sliema.”

 

Malta’s Government Has Previously Focused on Attracting Cryptocurrency Investment From Businesses

Malta’s central government has recently expressed great interest in embracing bitcoin, with the cabinet of malta approving the first draft for a national strategy designed to promote cryptocurrency and blockchain technology across the nation during April. Despite the bold rhetoric, the island still lacks basic infrastructure that will allow increased user adoption, as evidenced by the crowdfunding campaign for the nation’s first bitcoin ATM.

 

Malta’s government has predominantly focussed upon attracting cryptocurrency based businesses to register on their shores. Several government agencies participated in a conference hosted by PKF Malta this week that sought to “[bring] together a think tank of professionals representing a cross section of the market ranging from start-up success stories to crowdfunding, blockchain, [and] bitcoin.” The conference featured keynote speakers from Silicon Valley, and an audience predominantly comprised of representatives from Malta’s business and academic sectors.
 

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

 

Author: Samuel Haig

 

David

The Dollar’s Slow Demise Continues in Plain Sight

The Dollar's Slow Demise Continues in Plain Sight

Byron King

BY 
POSTED 
JULY 26, 2017

The Dollar’s Slow Demise Continues in Plain Sight

“The end of the world’s present monetary system is already taking place,” says one of Mexico’s leading, hard-money economists, Hugo Salinas Price. “The U.S. is losing influence in the world… The end of the dollar as the basis of the international monetary system means the end of the U.S. as we have known it.”

You may or may not know of Salinas Price, but he’s a serious player at high monetary levels.

He’s not nearly as famous as most television talking-heads on mainstream U.S. media. However, he’s been following monetary issues for many decades. He’s a Mexican business magnate and founder of the Mexican retail chain, Elektra. He also happens to be a historian of money.

According to Salinas Price, “The present monetary system of the world, based on the dollar, is on its death-bed. A fiat currency — such as the dollar — cannot be replaced by another fiat currency,” he explains. “Therefore, the world will necessarily have to take up (precious metals) as the world’s money.”

Salinas Price does not foresee the U.S., or other leading Western nations, taking the lead in resolving their own currency issues. Instead, he thinks, “it is likely that the Eurasian Bloc will initiate the monetary transformation of the world, in due course.”

Specifically, he foresees China and Russia creating a gold- and/or silver-backed currency to conduct trade. Salinas Price himself has long urged Mexico to adopt a silver-based currency, to retain value inside that nation’s economy, using the peso.

Globally, there’s an obvious flight to hard currency. Whatever may happen with the day-to-day price of “paper gold,” all of the physical metal, from every mine, mill and refinery in the world, has a buyer for every ounce.

A Different Kind of Russian Collusion

Just follow the data for proof…

China, Russia and India are all accumulating massive amounts of gold. Other large amounts of gold are moving into the Middle East, and other Asian nations. For example, below is a recent graph, showing Russia’s steady accumulation of gold over the past decade.

Russian Central Bank Gold Reserves

This kind of gold buildup in Russia is no accident. Russia has a clear, national policy to accumulate gold within its state treasury. That’s because Russian policy makers are concerned about U.S./Western actions, including economic sanctions, NATO expansion, near-constant and long-term bellicose rhetoric and more.

Russian policymakers are pushing back, as you likely know from following the news. Russia is confronting the U.S./West not just directly — by building submarines and missiles, and deploying troops into Syria, for example — but also via asymmetric means.

One U.S./Western weakness, in the eyes of Russian policymakers, is the dollar — the currency used for international trade. Russian strategists detect a long-term decline of value and global significance for the U.S. buck. It’s a wide-open target for asymmetric push-back.

According to a recent report in Russia’s Sputnik News, “In the years to come, global financial markets will see a significant devaluation of the American currency… Russia and China continue to stockpile gold in a bid to cut their economies’ dependency on the U.S. dollar in the future.”

Radical Political and Economic Transformations Will Increase as the Dollar’s Global Role Decreases

In summary, Sputnik states that, “if the dollar’s role as a global reserve currency is decreased, the world will see radical political and economic transformation.”

Right now, nearly 60% of global trade is denominated in dollars. By stockpiling gold, Russia and China want to gain monetary independence, while reducing their respective reliance on the dollar.

That approach, outlined in Sputnik, parallels what other high-level Russians have stated about their national monetary strategy.

Sergey Glazyev, a well-placed Russian politician and key Kremlin player, recently declared: “As soon as we (Russia) and China dump the dollar, it will be the end of the U.S. military might.”

In an interview with Russian News Agency TASS (successor to the old, Soviet-era TASS news service), Glazyev explained, “The United States has no tools to make all others use the dollar other than a truncheon. That is why they are indulging in a hybrid war with the entire world to shift their debt burden on to other countries, to confine everyone to the dollar and weaken territories they cannot control.”

Per Glazyev, the “only way to stop U.S. aggression is to get rid of dollar addiction.”

The Final Flailing of a Failing Empire

In the West — and certainly in the U.S. — there’s a tendency to dismiss this kind of pro-gold/anti-dollar thinking and commentary by Russians. In fact, it’s a stretch for most people to imagine any world in which the dollar is not king.

Yet, more and more global trade is moving away from dollar denominations. Russia conducts much of its trade with China in rubles-yuan, with a gold exchange in Shanghai to ensure proper valuation. Plus, you’ve likely heard of China’s efforts to conduct more and more trade across the world in yuan, all backed by the Shanghai Gold Exchange.

Indeed, Beijing is even working with Saudi Arabia to displace the petrodollar as the basis for pricing oil exports to China. China already imports oil from Russia, Iran and Angola, priced in yuan and those yuan are tradable for gold. Looking ahead, if China breaks the Saudi link to the petrodollar, there’s no telling what the repercussions could be in other sectors of international trade.

Gold and silver are making a monetary comeback.

We’re fast approaching a new monetary tipping point. The next global trading system is already setting up, in plain sight, as long as you follow the facts and note who is buying gold bars, and where that metal is heading.

What can the individual investor do?

Well, if you don’t hold physical precious metal, get some. And if you are not well-invested in precious metal mining shares, you need to get there.

Echoing Jim Rickards, I believe that you should have at least 10% of your portfolio devoted to precious metals and mining shares; more, if it helps you sleep better at night.

Regards,
Byron King
for The Daily Reckoning

David

All Cryptocurrency Prices Today Have Volatile Swings

All Cryptocurrency Prices Today Have Volatile Swings

All Cryptocurrency Prices Today Have Volatile Swings
 

All Cryptocurrency prices were volatile today, and most were down as of 2:00 p.m., with the total value of the global marketplace falling from nearly $95 billion to roughly $86.8 billion over the last 24 hours.

The biggest story moving cryptocurrency prices today (Tuesday) was renewed fear over a potential August fork in Bitcoin that could split the currency. Bitcoin Cash has announced plans to proceed with a fork. BCC is generating support ahead of its planned first day of trading in August.

Two exchanges – Bithumb and Kraken – have confirmed plans to list BCC, despite offering a press release for confirmation.

Meanwhile, Japanese exchanges have resumed operations after a shutdown needed to prepare for a possible disruption in Bitcoin.
 

Below is a recap of cryptocurrency prices at 2 p.m. EDT…

Bitcoin: $2,566.24, -6.25%

Ethereum: $205.64, -8.39%

Ripple: $0.17, -9.09%

Litecoin: $42.00, -5.38%

Dash: $195.55, -6.01%

 

Now that we know all of today's price movements, here's what has been moving these cryptocurrencies…

Bitcoin Prices Today: Bitcoin Slides Below $2,600

Bitcoin prices dropped again as concerns about a potential fork reemerged on Tuesday.

A hard split for the currency is still on track for Aug. 1. Bitcoin will be split into two new coins, Bitcoin Core (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCC).

 

Ethereum Prices Slide Despite Airline Boost

Ethereum prices followed Bitcoin lower Tuesday on heavier than usual volume. Prices fell from highs of about $225 after several days of lackluster activity. Still, there has been plenty of bullish news in the industry. PJSC Siberia Airlines announced it has used the Ethereum blockchain to sell tickets. The company has also said it will consider the acceptance of Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies in the future.

 

Ripple Prices Follow Bitcoin Lower

Ripple prices dipped on the day, with the market capitalization falling beneath $6.7 billion. Ripple prices were down 9% on the day.
 

Litecoin Prices Drop on Cryptocurrency Sell-Off

Litecoin prices also slumped but have been a bit more muted due to news that the currency is becoming more mainstream in its trading.

 

Dash Prices Slide Despite Apple Store Optimism

Dash prices fell more than 6% due to a broader sell-off in the cryptocurrency sector. Dash still remained the fifth-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization at $1.456 billion due to larger downturns in Ethereum Classic and NEM.

Dash prices had been rallying in recent days after Apple announced it had reviewed an appeal to allow the cryptocurrency to be used in the Apple Store.

 

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur
 

Author: GARRETT BALDWIN,

David

Now You Can Pay For Your University Degree With Cryptocurrency

Now You Can Pay For Your University Degree With Cryptocurrency

Now You Can Pay For Your University Degree With Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency has taken the online e-currency market by storm in recent years. The likes of Bitcoin have gone all out and it’s currently the fastest growing e-currency in the world by a considerable margin. As of July 2017, Bitcoin has made investors billions and it’s currently worth more than $2,200 apiece. It’s uncertain how much further the value of Bitcoin is expected to grow, but as its market cap alone was valued at more than $40 billion in May 2017, it’s certainly a cryptocurrency worth implementing online.

That’s why many merchants and businesses and e-commerce stores have sided with cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. It seems they are the go-to e-currencies right now, along with the standard PayPal and Skrill payments.
 

THE E-COMMERCE INDUSTRY HAS SEEN A RISE IN MERCHANTS IMPLEMENTING BITCOIN

Popular domain registrar, Name Cheap, has been accepting Bitcoin for a while now and it’s businesses like that that have seen a rise in consumers because of the popularity of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

Many web developers now use Bitcoin as a standard payment method for their web development resources such as domain registration, web hosting, and even as their primary method for their own web development businesses.

 

ONLINE BOOKMAKERS HAVE BEEN USING BITCOIN FOR YEARS

While many official bookmakers haven’t quite got to grips with cryptocurrency yet, there are still several online bookmakers that have implemented it as a deposit and withdrawal payment method. It looks set to grow in popularity with bookmakers in 2017 because it offers a fast and easy deposit method, much like the process PayPal and Neteller offers.

UNIVERSITY OUTLETS HAVE SEEN A RISE IN CRYPTOCURRENCY IMPLEMENTATION

Those studying for an online healthcare MBA using a healthcare MBA online program now have it easy when it comes to paying for their online courses. With cryptocurrency now available as a payment method, many more students have opted to obtain their degree using online courses provided by multiple universities around the United States.
 

POPULAR ONLINE MARKETPLACES NOW USE BITCOIN

While the likes of Amazon have still yet to implement Bitcoin as a payment method, there are still other stores that use it. For those with Shopify stores, for example, Bitcoin is a payment available to both you and your customers.
 

Shopify is one of the few stores and e-commerce set ups that have provided Bitcoin as a payment option for more than three years. Shopify announced in November 2013 that the cryptocurrency was available for all merchants to implement into their own set ups. It’s unclear whether any of the other big marketplaces will implement it anytime soon, but it’s not a matter of if they are going to implement it, it’s a matter of when.

Although Bitcoin holds the number one spot as the most popular cryptocurrency available, there are still other fast-growing currencies that are providing much bigger competition. It is clear Bitcoin is loved by many and it’s almost certain to be a popular payment method with bigger e-commerce stores in the future.
 

David Ogden
Entrepreneur.

David ogden Cryptocurrency entrepreneur

 

Author: Oliver Wood

 

David

Ripple has risen by almost 3,000% this year

Ripple has risen by almost 3,000% this year

Ripple has risen by almost 3,000% this year

It’s not just Bitcoin and Ethereum posting astonishing gains. Ripple, a cryptocurrency based out of San Francisco, has risen in value by almost 3,000% this year.

 

One Ripple token, known as XRP, is currently valued at just below US20 cents. XRP started the year at the fractional value 0.0065, but experienced rapid growth in the June quarter as transaction volumes increased.

 

According to a report by CNBC, that growth was primarily driven by plans to set up a platform for the sale of XRP tokens.

 

XRP tokens differ from Bitcoin and Ethereum in that most of them are owned by the Ripple network itself and can’t be mined.

 

Ripple rose as high as US26 cents in June taking its annual gain to almost 4,000%, before falling back in July.

Ripple’s total value of $US7.6 billion makes it the third biggest cryptocurrency in the world by market capitalisation.

 

Bitcoin has a market cap of $US44.8 billion, while Ethereum is valued at around $US21 billion.

 

Ripple’s head of XRP markets, Miguel Vias, told CNBC that Ripple had a specific strategy focused on international payments and had already partnered with large global banks.

 

“With respect to XRP, we are incredibly focused on international payments, I think we are probably the only digital asset that has a clear use case with respect to what we are trying to do with the asset,” Vias said.

 

Ripple has partnered with around 30 digital asset exchanges, and is positioning itself in the market as a faster faciliation network for international transactions.

 

CNBC reported that the Ripple network processed over $US11 billion worth of transactions in the June quarter.

 

The company’s CEO, Brad Garlinhouse, said Ripple has a processing speed of around 70,000 transactions per second.

 

That compares to Bitcoin’s current volume capacity of around 7 transactions per second. The Bitcoin developer community is in the process of setting up a new platform which is expected to double transaction speeds.

 

Last year, Ripple announced the setup of its first interbank global payments group, which included Westpac, Bank of America Merril Lynch and the Royal Bank of Canada.

 

“With respect to growth and outreach, we will continue to partner with digital asset exchanges for listings and mostly importantly … it is really all about payments and in this quarter, you will see some very interesting developments with respect to our partnership in payments, with respect to XRP in particular,” Vias told CNBC.

 

Time will tell whether the value of the XRP tokens traded on the Ripple network will continue to maintain their recent rate of growth.

 

David Ogden
Entrpreneur

cryptocurrency entrepreneuer

 

Author: Sam Jacobs

David

The crypto-currency craze

The crypto-currency craze

The crypto-currency craze

 

In the late 1990s, as investors woke up to the promise of the internet, shares in any company with dot.com after its name soared to giddy heights.

Then the bubble burst.

Now there are warnings of another technology investment bubble – this time related to the fascination with crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin.

On the Tech Tent podcast this week, we examine the phenomenon of ICOs – Initial Coin Offerings – which have seen over $1bn raised so far this year from investors who get little more than a token and a vague promise of involvement in a new business.

The term ICO – designed to mirror the IPO that sees a firm issue shares and float on a stock exchange – seems to mean different things to different people. Early versions were simply ways of getting a new crypto-currency off the ground, but now many are promising to use the blockchain technology that underpins Bitcoin and similar currencies to create businesses.

Among the ICO projects listed by Smith + Crown, which researches the crypto-currency scene, is a business raising money to create the world's most lucrative lottery based on blockchain, and another that promises to rent out high-quality office space using digital tokens.

On Tech Tent, we talk to an entrepreneur who is boldly going into uncharted territory with this new investment technique. Pavlo Tanasyuk is the founder of Spacebit, which aims to create what he calls "a distributed space agency unshackled by state or national sponsorship".

Next month, he will invite investors to take a stake in this venture, which he describes as a crypto version of Elon Musk's Space X. He will only accept payment in Bitcoin, Ethereum or other crypto-currencies and in return backers will get tokens and a role in deciding how the business is run.

But the finance blogger Frances Coppola has compared ICOs to the tulip fever of the 16th Century and other investment bubbles.

"The enthusiasm for ICOs is coming off the back of the Bitcoin and Ethereum booms," she says.

She warns that such schemes are completely unregulated, and fears that many who invest in them simply won't understand what they're getting into.

"There will be scams in this – I'd be astonished if regulators aren't looking at this."

Even Pavlo Tanasyuk concedes there is plenty of risk attached to this kind of investment. "Ninety-five per cent won't deliver – but we will. It's important to set an example. We're doing something real and have a strong management team in place."

When the dot.com bubble burst, it became clear that many investors had not really understood what the firms they were backing actually did or the nature of the technological challenges they faced. Today, the world of crypto-currencies and the blockchain looks even more impenetrable.

Consider this description of one project, Neverdie, which has already raised more than $2m (£1.5m) in an ICO: "A virtual reality infrastructure platform that bridges virtual worlds with popular MMORPGs [massively multiplayer online role-playing games] on the Ethereum blockchain."

Doubtless those who have bought the coins that are meant to fund this vision have read the white paper describing the project, and the disclaimer at the end: "Neverdie Coins and Teleport Tokens do not represent ownership in any real-world companies. These tokens are designed to activate virtual utilities."

Real money is going into a virtual world and if it disappears in a puff of virtual smoke, no regulator will be there to cry foul. Let's hope those who back these kind of ventures are going into them with their eyes open.

 

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

 

Author: Rory Cellan-Jones

David

Bitcoin is booming because a split in the cryptocurrency has been narrowly averted

Bitcoin is booming because a split in the cryptocurrency has been narrowly averted

Bitcoin is booming because a split in the cryptocurrency has been narrowly averted

 

Bitcoin has risen as much as 28% over the past 24 hours, driven by news that an imminent split in the cryptocurrency has been narrowly averted. The price of bitcoin nearly hit $3,000 late on July 20, within spitting distance of its all-time high, set last month.

The remarkable rally took place as bitcoin’s miners coalesced around one of several competing proposals that would increase the number of transactions that can be processed on the network. The issue has gained urgency in recent months, because one of the measures, known as Bitcoin Improvement Proposal 148 (BIP 148), would lead to a split in the cryptocurrency on Aug. 1 if implemented.

The price rallied as bitcoin’s miners began broadcasting their support for a less radical proposal, BIP 91, in increasing numbers yesterday. This proposal avoids the so-called “hard fork” by stopping short of altering the hard-coded limit on transaction capacities that is the bone of contention within the bitcoin world, while offering slightly enlarged transaction capacity.

The threshold for activating BIP 91 is 80% of all the processing power on the bitcoin network. That was achieved in the early hours of July 21. Currently 97% of the processing power on the network, which is largely controlled by miners, is voting in favor of BIP 91.

But it’s not settled yet. Although enough miners have signaled support for their preferred proposal—a process akin to broadcasting a preference over the network—enough of them must now run the software that implements this proposal within the next two and a half days. Failure to maintain a simple majority of the processing power, also called the hash rate, would mean BIP 91 does not activate. This would put the bitcoin world back at square one, with just a week to go before the potentially destabilizing hard fork on Aug. 1.

There are also still signs that the fundamental disagreement that led to this showdown—a “civil war,” as some call it—is far from resolved. The fight is between bitcoin’s miners and the influential programmers who contribute to bitcoin’s open-source code, known as the “core developers.” The core devs say bitcoin is at risk of being controlled by a cartel of miners who, by virtue of their huge investments in processing power, are able to dictate what changes are made to the code—anathema to bitcoin’s decentralized founding ethos. But the miners, and other heavy users, like payment processors, point out that the bitcoin network could be abandoned if it doesn’t enlarge its limited capacity soon.

The architect of BIP 91, James Hilliard, a miner himself, told industry publication CoinDesk: “This is where mining centralization makes things easier, because I can just message everybody on WeChat and help them if needed.” That may be so, but it won’t comfort the parts of the bitcoin world concerned with centralization of the cryptocurrency, even if the current fix to bitcoin’s problems goes according to plan.

 

David Ogden
Entreprener

cryptocurrency entrepreneur

 

Author:  Joon Ian Wong

David

Bitcoin recovers from crash to surge above $2,500

Bitcoin recovers from crash to surge above $2,500

Bitcoin recovers from crash to surge above $2,500

 

BITCOIN'S price has continued to bounce back, and rocketed by around 40 per cent over the last three days as it recovers from lows seen at the start of the week.

The cryptocurrency jumped above $2,500 towards $2,600, after touching lows of $1,852 on July 17.
 

Traders were spooked by fears that Bitcoin could be split.

 

But the recovery has been helped after software has helped bridge the gap between bitcoin miners.

 

The cryptocurrency has previously reached record highs of $3,000 but some analysts have predicted the rally could go much further.

He believes bitcoin and other currencies underpinned by block chain technology are set to become more mainstream over the next decade.
 

In the shorter term Sheba Jafari, the head of technical strategy at Goldman Sachs could reach $3,691.

 

Japan recently helped bring Bitcoin into the mainstream by passing legislation that allows it to be accepted as a legal currency.

 

The currency has a limited supply of around 21 million, which has helped it reach safe haven status – like gold.

 

The supply is expected to be reached by 2140 – it's currently at around 16.3 million.

 

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

 

Author: LANA CLEMENTS

David

From Mining to Investing in Cryptocurrency

From Mining to Investing in Cryptocurrency

From Mining to Investing in Cryptocurrency
 

What Is Mining

Mining is the process by which transactions of crypto currencies are secured. For this purpose, the miners carry out mathematical computations for the network with their computer equipment. As a reward for their services, they collect the newly created coins, as well as the fees associated with the transactions they confirm. In this sense, miners are competing and their incomes are proportional to the computing power they deploy.

To better grasp the concept of mining, Andreas Antonopoulos, one of the most well-known and well-respected figures in the Bitcoin community, explains that “a good way to describe mining is like a giant competitive game of sudoku that resets every time someone finds a solution and whose difficulty automatically adjusts so that it takes approximately 10 minutes to find a solution. Imagine a giant sudoku puzzle, several thousand rows, and columns in size. If I show you a completed puzzle you can verify it quite quickly. However, if the puzzle has a few squares filled and the rest is empty, it takes a lot of work to solve! The difficulty of the sudoku can be adjusted by changing its size (more or fewer rows and columns), but it can still be verified quite easily even if it is very large.”

 

The Mining Equipment

In the beginning, mining with a processor (CPU) was the only way to mine bitcoins. Graphics cards (GPUs) eventually replaced CPUs due to their nature which allowed an increase of 50x to 100x in computing power, by using less power per megahash compared to a CPU.

The Bitcoin mining world is now dominated by Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC). An ASIC is a chip designed specifically to accomplish a single task. Unlike FPGAs, an ASIC cannot be programmed to perform other tasks. An ASIC designed to mine bitcoins can and will not do anything else than mining bitcoins

The rigidity of an ASIC allows it to offer an increase in computing power of 100x while reducing power consumption compared to all other technologies by a factor of 7. Unlike the generations of technologies that preceded the ASIC, this last innovation is dubbed the “end of the line”, as there is nothing to replace ASICs today or soon.

Then came along Ethereum, a cryptocurrency that can be mined like Bitcoin – with an important difference. The Ethereum network was built to be resistant to ASIC hardware, making mining Ether with graphics cards viable. Ethereum is enjoying a Bitcoin-esque bubble of mammoth proportions right now, with the price of Ethereum skyrocketing.

This led to a shortage of graphic cards. Miners worldwide bought those Nvidia and Radeon cards that are best suited for mining – selling them out quickly. This is not the first time that graphics cards enjoyed a meteoric rise in price due to cryptocurrency. Bitcoin took GPU prices for a ride back in late 2013.
 

Innovation Meets Mining

Mining has nowadays become an activity that with an appetite for resources so enormous that it is bolstering the creativity of investors in this field, to always strive for the optimal solution. It is in this context that the concept of “cloud mining” was born. This means that the investor does not buy a physical mining rig, but rather rents computing power from a different company and gets paid according to how much power was bought. By doing so, investors get rid of the hassle of buying expensive equipment, storing it, cooling it, and maintaining it.

This industrialization of mining has led companies to seek out the lowest resource costs possible. While many areas of the globe offer competitive costs and infrastructure, polar areas offer unique mining conditions. Such was the idea of KnC Miner that announced the installation of computing power by the Arctic circle. This initiative, unfortunately, didn’t get enough time to reveal its true potential, as the company filed bankruptcy in 2016

Less in the north, in China, people have been puzzled by the fast growth of crypto-mining farms. Investors appeared on the scene with the wacky idea to mine Bitcoin using hydropower, thus benefiting from free water infinitely more profitable.

These innovative solutions have been of varying success. However, for the most profitable ones, it is still difficult to replicate and scale them up, as they require specific and unique geographic properties.

 

Is It Still Profitable?

The early days of Bitcoin mining are often described as a gold rush, but is it still the case in 2017?

Mining has grown from a handful of early enthusiasts into a specialized industrial-level venture. The easy money was scooped out a long time ago and what remains is buried under the cryptographic equivalent of tons of hard rock.

While mining is still technically possible for anyone, those with underpowered setups will find more money is spent on electricity than is generated by mining. In other words, mining won’t be profitable at a small scale unless you have access to free or really cheap electricity.

The good news is that mining is not limited to Bitcoin. New coins come up all the time with difficulties of mining that are vastly different from Bitcoin’s. Today, Ethereum is such a currency. When tomorrow Ethereum’s difficulty will make it less lucrative for mining, or when it’s moving to a different model altogether, other coins will be there that offer better returns.

If you want to go into mining yourself, the time you will spend educating yourself about the technology, the hardware, and the currencies, is significant. The setup costs for buying hardware are also considered when you want to mine at scale.
 

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

David

Austrian Post Offices Sell Bitcoin, Ethereum and More For Cash

Austrian Post Offices Sell Bitcoin, Ethereum and More For Cash

Austrian Post Offices Sell Bitcoin, Ethereum and More For Cash

Post offices in Austria are offering bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Dash in exchange for cash through “bitpanda to go,” a startup that focuses on making the purchase of cryptocurrencies easy. Users can purchase 50 €, 100 € or 500€ worth of cryptocurrency from the Osterreichische Post branches.

Post offices in Austria are offering bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Dash in exchange for cash through “bitpanda to go,” a startup that focuses on making the purchase of cryptocurrencies easy. Users can purchase 50 €, 100 € or 500€ worth of cryptocurrency from the Osterreichische Post branches.

The 1,800 post branches provide cryptocurrency purchasers a receipt that can be entered on bitpanda.com/togo. The website also posts the current exchange rate for the respective currency. There are no additional fees.

Users need a valid email address to set up an account. They select which cryptocurrency they want to purchase and enter a code. The selected amount is then transferred to the user’s wallet.

 

Fair Prices For Offline Purchases

Bitpanda, formerly known as Coinimal, seeks to provide fair prices for offline purchases of cryptocurrencies. The Österreichische Post AG allows bitpanda to offer the digital assets at cost. Hence, the fee structure by offline purchases via cash matches “online” options. This provides cryptocurrencies a more acceptable image in the minds of those who view Internet commerce less favorably.

Bitpanda was founded as Coinimal in October 2014 by bitcoin enthusiasts who had experienced how hard it was to acquire bitcoin in the European Union. This deficiency in the market led to the idea of Coinimal.

 

A Versatile Platform

Last year, Coinimal introduced a “sell” feature to enable users to convert ETH back to fiat as an easy way to buy and sell Ethereum using a bank account. The process of buying and selling ETH can otherwise be time-consuming since most exchanges are either U.S.-based or primarily offer ETH-to-BTC trading. There are nine funding options and withdrawals using PayPal, NETELLER, Skrill or SEPA transfer.

Coinimal rebranded as bitpanda in 2016 and introduced its own bitcoin wallet. Last month, bitpanda built an Ethereum wallet into its platform. It has also added Litecoin and Dash.

 

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

David Ogden Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur

 

Author: Lester Coleman

 

David