Will Cryptocurrencies Ever Replace Real Money?
30 Jan 2018
Just a few weeks ago, if you searched online to see how many cryptocurrencies were actively being used, the answer would have been less than 1,000. Now, coinmarketcap.com lists 1498, with new ones starting all the time. At the moment, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Ripple, Cardano, and Litecoin, and NEO lead the market but that does not mean one of the new ones couldn’t get traction and overtake them all.
The rapid growth of cryptocurrencies has caused some debate as to whether they could ever replace real money. A report by Futurism outlines some of the possible outcomes if this was ever to happen, pointing out some of the advantages and disadvantages of having a universal currency. Some programmes are already experimenting with using cryptocurrencies as a means of distributing a universal basic income, and more work is being carried out all the time.
The two advantages that would affect the daily user are the lack of middlemen taking a cut of all financial transactions and the security of a decentralized system that is not owned by anyone.
The biggest disadvantage is that initially, as cash disappeared, the value of assets would drop. This could affect financial institutions and governments very badly, and they need to get up to speed with the possibility of a cash-free society if they want to avoid potential big losses.
It Is Happening Quicker Than May Be Realised
Banks, pension funds, and governments are just three examples of institutions that are hoping that cryptocurrencies will disappear. This is becoming more unlikely as businesses online, and physical stores, start to accept them as a form of payment.
One of the first industries to embrace cryptocurrencies was online casinos, and the number of them that accept them for deposits increases every week. There are some online casinos that only accept this new internet money, although they will pay your winnings in traditional cash if you prefer. They have also made it very easy to play poker, roulette or maybe last years most popular slots, a list that includes perennial favourite Thunderstruck II, and will even help you to open a cryptocurrency wallet if you’re just starting out.
As well as gaming sites, there have been a large number of agencies set up to trade in cryptocurrencies. As so many people know very little about trading them, it is important to use a qualified trader if you decide that is the way you want to go.
It is very easy to pay for goods in a physical store that supports cryptocurrencies. You download a special app to your smartphone or tablet, and the bill will have information on for you to scan. The transaction happens immediately, and the store, as well as not having any credit or debit card charges, will not have to wait days for your money to hit their bank. The savvy stores are passing some of this extra profit onto customers by reducing prices for cryptocurrency users, which in turn brings them more business.
Cryptocurrencies are definitely here to stay, but whether financial institutions and governments will ever let them replace cash is another matter.