Bitcoin for Beginners: What It Is and Where to Get It
New to the world of cryptocurrencies and bitcoin? Don’t know where to start looking or what to start reading? Don’t despair—a lot of people all over the world are actually in the same place as yo
u. However, if you’re interested and you’re here, then you’re definitely on your way to picking up the basics of bitcoin and getting ready to become even more involved in the whole crypto world.
What is bitcoin? A virtual currency exchanged between two parties without intermediaries (banks and such). It was released as an open-source project back in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto (an alias used by a person or even group of people) with the goal to create a decentralized alternative to the traditional financial system.
How does it work? With the help of a certain pe
er-to-peer technology called blockchain and on the basis of consensus. To put it simply: if you wish to buy goods or services using digital money, your transaction needs to be verified by all members in the bitcoin network before it is approved. This process can sometimes take up to six validations and one hour.
What are bitcoin’s main characteristics? It is decentralized (doesn’t require middlemen in transactions), pseudonymous (there’s no way to find out sender/receiver details), immutable (once approved, the transaction can’t be reversed), and completely secure (thanks to blockchain, the system is able to avoid fraud).
What can you buy with bitcoin? Almost anything you want. Over 100,000 merchants are now accepting bitcoin, which means that you can easily purchase food, house supplies, airplane tickets, jewelery, car parts, and so much more using your digital cash.
Where can you get these virtual coins? On digital currency exchanges. Once you pick a platform and register, you’ll be able to buy, sell, and even store your bitcoin with ease. Most exchange platforms offer crypto wallets, as well, which work like lockers for your coins: thanks to private keys, no one can access them but you. A good example is Kriptomat, which is currently in open beta phase; the service is completely aligned with EU regulations, and you can simply register here to become one of the first users.
So, there you have it: an introduction to bitcoin. Of course, this is not where the fun ends: if you take a look at our infographic, you’ll find out a bunch of fun facts about this relatively new cash system, types of wallets, how much is spent in a span of 24 hours, and so on. Happy reading!