The Booming Crypto Market
Those who follow market trends know that 2017 was a prosperous year for cryptocurrencies. Just at the start of 2018, the crypto market cap was around $800 million. Experts say it will soon reach $1 billion. The impressive growth in the crypto market came along with the Bitcoin craze and the astonishing returns from a skyrocketing number of ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings).
The crypto euphoria has been so big that blockchain was one of the key topics on the World Economic Forum in Davos, where world leaders get together to discuss socio-economic and development solutions. ‘Blockchain cannot be ignored’, they all agreed, as the forum called for tighter regulation and authority control on the crypto market.
Even if the hype around Bitcoin is gradually dwindling as people wake up to the incredible volatility in the market, many are not yet aware yet that cryptocurrencies are just one of the various applications of blockchain. In fact, there are a great number of cryptocoins trading on the Coin Exchange Trade Satoshi which are not meant to work as currencies at all, but instead support news technologies.
The future is on our screen
Blockchain and Internet of Things (IoT) are shaping systems due to their ability to connect numerous entities in a single network, where links can be tracked and openly disclosed, ensuring that all parties have equal and transparent access to information.
Digital wallets are the new money. With new forms of payment emerging at a lightning pace, blockchain is revolutionising the sector by empowering individuals, giving them more control over their money and information.
According to Coin Market Cap, there are nearly 4,000 different cryptocurrencies on the market. All of them essentially use the same underlying blockchain technology, so what sets one apart from the others would be its finality and special features. It is worth doing research on alternative types of coins, with prices varying from a few pennies to a few thousand pounds.
Plus One Coin (PLUS1): The new frontier of social interaction
The Plus One Coin is a creation of Online Blockchain plc, the only UK blockchain company to be listed on the London Market (LON:OBC). Designed as social media cryptocurrency.
Defined by OBC CEO Clem Chambers as a social affirmation coin, PlusOneCoin is a social media cryptocurrency therefore users on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter would earn coins as their posts receive ‘thumbs up’ and ‘likes’.
It enables people to up-vote content, allowing them to boost their profile and related content while the coin gains value. Users on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter would earn coins as their posts receive ‘thumbs up’ and ‘likes’.
The cryptocurrency can also be employed to detect and combat fake online interactions and views by using the same blockchain system which keeps track of cryptocurrency transactions, recording which posts are real.
It is practically creating an Ecosystem that enables a website to generate more money for itself, its users and its content providers.
“The blockchain enables people to make the points that they are validating people with and enables those people by validating somebody to actually give them points; and points equals prizes. Those points do ultimately have a financial value so you can give someone a penny, or a tenth of a penny or a hundredth of a penny but a robot view is not going to do that” said Online Blockchain CEO Clem Chambers. “So that is a real thing that validates that interaction and it actually pays the platform and pays the content provider.”
The Plus One Coin is revolutionary because it creates a feasible means for both the social media platform and the user to earn cash.
NEO (NEO): the future for smart contracts
Picture a scenario where you do not need agents and brokers to mediate your transactions? Blockchain makes this possible.
Recently developed in China, NEO is an innovative and curious coin. More than a cryptocurrency, NEO was created as a platform to support smart contracts by allowing transmission and storage of data across the blockchain network. In order to do so, the NEO blockchain can support up to an impressive 10,000 transactions per second - whereas Bitcoin, for example, can only support around 15.
NEO is strongly focused on creating digital identities for users. The anonymity factor - which is one of the most interesting and appealing characteristic about cryptocurrencies - could be a problem as it reduces accountability, especially if we talking about governments and banks adopting blockchain in their operations. NEO gets to the core of this issue, working in the opposite direction from Bitcoin. NEO developers prepared the system to be compliant and issue digital identities according to international standards.
Ripple (XRP): Making payments easier and faster
One of the gems in the crypto market in 2012, Ripple is more of a system than a currency. Created by former Bitcoin developers, this cryptocurrency has been well received in finance, already licensed to over 100 banks. Say goodbye to 72-hour waits and overpriced bank transaction fees. Through the Ripple network, institutions such as banks and payment providers can trade different values in any currency, including cryptocurrencies. Ripple processes cross-border payments in real time, with end-to-end tracking and low transaction costs.
Despite the price volatility which crypto coins are typically subject to, analysts are positive and confident in the future of Ripple as an effective financial and trading tool. "I still believe Ripple has a strong future among mainstream traders who take investment cues from major media outlets,” said Jeff Koyen, CEO of 360 Blockchain USA to Forbes.
"Ripple continues to increase its platform use and that will add value to the coin," believes Charles Thorngren, CEO of Noble Alternative Investments. "With Ripple being the fastest and most cost efficient of the digital platforms, it is no wonder that MoneyGram, IDT Corp and Mercury FX have aligned themselves here."