Bitcoin is the world’s first decentralized digital currency. This currency is fundamentally different from all previously created electronic currencies and payment systems. It is not tied to any physical assets or official currencies, and the price of a digital coin – Bitcoin – is regulated solely by market supply and demand.
Bitcoin is also a global payment system through which transactions with this currency can be made. Its main difference from traditional payment systems is that the Bitcoin system doesn’t have any management or processing center – all transactions take place exclusively within the network of peer clients. You can even pay for your purchases with bitcoin prepaid debit card.
Peculiarities of Bitcoin system
- No registration, anyone can participate in the network;
- Wallet is not tied to the user’s identity, anyone can create an unlimited number of wallets and details;
- Cheap, anonymous and unlimited money transfers all over the world;
- No intermediaries, digital money is sent directly between users;
- It is impossible to block the transfer, freeze the money in the user’s wallet or roll back transactions that have already been made;
- Bitcoins can be stored on your computer, on your smartphone, in an online wallet, on a special device or in a safe deposit box;
- There is no controlling entity; the price of bitcoins is determined solely by market supply and demand;
- Bitcoin issuance is strictly limited and predictable; It is impossible to “run a printing press” and create many bitcoins.
Thus, bitcoin simultaneously possesses the properties of regular cash, electronic currencies, a money transfer system and digital gold.
Who came up with Bitcoin?
Satoshi Nakamoto is considered to be the inventor of Bitcoin. In 2008, he published a scientific article, which suggested a new electronic payment system on the basis of cryptography and gave a mathematical description of its functioning. The idea was to create a currency independent of any central government, with transfers made only electronically, almost instantaneously, and with very low transfer costs. Apparently, fearing that such an independent currency would not please the powers-that-be, the inventor of Bitcoin published the article anonymously, and has long had no involvement in the development of the system, whose fully open source code is being developed by a large group of developers on a non-profit basis.
So who prints Bitcoin?
No one. Unlike the official currencies that the world’s central banks print at their discretion, unaccountable to the people of their countries, no one prints Bitcoin. Instead, Bitcoin is issued in digital form by its user community, which anyone can join at any time. The Bitcoin user community represents a distributed computer network that pools its computing power in order to verify and execute Bitcoin transactions. It is currently the largest distributed computing network on the planet, with more processing power than the world’s 500 most powerful supercomputers combined. You can also make purchases using cryptocurrency debit cards.