Cryptocurrencies are currently in a rage.
Everywhere you see headlines with an impressive thousand percent gain for “coins” like bitcoin. But what gives them value? When have you ever used bitcoin?
It is true that this is not practical at the moment, primarily due to the time required to complete the transaction. But there are other coins that are emerging as viable candidates for the success of bitcoin as the cryptocurrency no. 1.
There is much to understand in the intricacies of cryptocurrencies, but this article is more about finding investment opportunities than explaining the science behind them.
A bubble in Bitcoin?
It is important to know the concept of “mining”. That is the very basis of cryptocurrency. This is how new bitcoins are created.
Simply put, a “miner” solves a complex mathematical problem using special software and as a result is rewarded with new bitcoins. The transaction is then stored in a blockchain, and these new bitcoins are officially in circulation.
As more bitcoins are in circulation, their mining becomes more complex, time consuming and less profitable. So, although about 80% of possible bitcoins are currently in circulation, the last one will not be mined until 2140.
As most people know by now, bitcoin has experienced a giant rally this year. In fact, it has increased by about 1,200% in the past year, which has made many people think it is in a bubble.
The total value of bitcoin in circulation now stands at over $ 150 billion. If it was a bitcoin company, it would be among the 50 largest in the United States.
Personally, I believe that the only reason bitcoin is so much more valuable than any other cryptocurrency is because it was the first one that broke into the mainstream. That is important though. At the very least, it gives other coin developers something to improve on.
The good thing is that, even if you think you missed the ship with bitcoins, there are a lot of other cryptocurrencies. Of course, some are scams, but others have real potential.
One of those that I think has a real, practical use is called Dash.
Dash: Digital Cash
First, Dash is ahead of the game in terms of convenience. Currently, bitcoin transactions take about 10 minutes to an hour on average. Dash is set up as the primary cryptocurrency that can be transferred immediately (in less than a second) between parties, which makes it much more convenient when it comes to buying things online or in a store.
One of the most attractive features of Dash is that 10% of newly minted coins are given to Dash DAO (decentralized autonomous organization). Simply put, DAO is Dash’s treasury. At the current price of more than $ 600 per coin, that’s $ 4 million a month that he can use.
It is important to know that no new coin has this kind of continuous funding. With this money Dash DAO can develop and market the currency.
Also, anyone can submit an idea for a project that will improve the value of the dash. Then, thousands of Dash programmers vote on the project. An example would be a partnership with stores to make Dash a viable transaction tool for their merchandise.
Of course, these developers make money from Dash, so anything that uses and promotes currency will be tempting.
This creates a circular effect, where the currency values the price because it is better financed and sold, then the DAO makes more money and can place Dash even more.
So far, Dash can be used in over 300 physical stores and over 100 websites to purchase goods or services. But the discovery for that could come from the marijuana industry.
Currently, banks are not allowed to have anything to do with marijuana transactions; everything has to be done in cash. Sellers cannot put money from the sale or into the bank.
Not only does this carry the risk of robbery, but these companies have to pay for the storage and transportation of cash. That adds up quickly.
The possibility of using Dash would be great for these suppliers. That would also mean great things for the price of Dash.
The good news is that it has already started to progress. In April, Dash partnered with a digital payment system called Alt Thirty Six, which has partnerships with some of the country’s leading dispensary management companies.
These software companies track transactions for hundreds of dispensaries and delivery services. This means that Dash users already have hundreds of ways to use the currency.
Since Dash officially became a payment method on Alt Thirty Six on October 11, its price has risen 118%. It’s only a month and a half.
Just the beginning
With a market capitalization of just $ 4.8 billion compared to bitcoin’s $ 156 billion, I believe Dash still has plenty of room to climb forward.
The marijuana industry is just the beginning for Dash, but it’s great. In 2016, legal sales were about $ 7 billion. It is still estimated that $ 46 billion was sold on the black market.
And as more and more stores open and marijuana becomes legal in more states, that legal figure is expected to be $ 23 billion by 2021 and $ 50 billion by 2026.
Again, this is just the beginning for Dash. Its unique feature of direct transactions makes it a viable alternative to cash, giving it an advantage over other cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.