In the infographic below, we discuss cryptocurrency and the digital economy. The obvious first question to ask is: what are cryptocurrencies? A cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency designed to work as a medium of exchange. It uses cryptography to secure and verify transactions, as well as to control the creation of new units of a particular cryptocurrency. They have no intrinsic value, no physical form, and they are independent & decentralized. The most famous cryptocurrency has been Bitcoin.

But there are many other digital currencies as well. These are largely referred to as “altcoins”, or alternatives to Bitcoin. There are hundreds of different altcoins, some of the more famous including: Ripple, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Cardano, Dash, Monero, NavCoin, Ethereum, Maker, Stellar, IOTA, ZCash, Ethereum Classic, Bitcoin Cash, NEO, and EOS.

2017 saw some very successful cryptocurrency projects. The most successful was Bitcoin, with a market cap of $176.7 Billion! Ethereum came in second, with a market cap of $93.2 Billion. Ripple seemed to be the unexpected underdog, drastically rising in value and beating Bitcoin in the percentages game, and reaching a market cap of $49.2 Billion. Bitcoin Cash had a market cap of $26.5 Billion. Cardano reached a market cap of $14.1 Billion. From there, Litecoin hit a  market cap of $9.4 Billion, NEM and Stellar both had market caps of $8.6 Billion, IO had a  market cap of $7.5 Billion, and IOTA reached a market cap of $6.5 Billion.

Cryptocurrencies have a lot of technology behind them. The basic technology behind these digital currencies is blockchain, which is a Peer-to-Peer technology that records all transactions on a large computer network, and it’s generally not controlled by a central authority. Blockchain was made popular as the main tech behind BTC, but Ethereum upgraded the concept, which led to the creation of Smart Contracts. Smart Contracts are digital contracts on the blockchain, which after being coded will execute the contract automatically based on various criteria. Encryption (largely referred to as cryptography) of course is a major part of digital currencies. Another big factor for many cryptocurrencies is anonymity, helping to hide the identity of users (which can have both good and bad effects). Digital currencies based on Proof-of-Stake, use a system that eliminates up to 90% of attacks, thus better securing the network.

The market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies reached $509,256,053,100 as of the 23rd of January, 2018. The total of the world’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is $78.5 Trillion. In the infographic, you’ll find countries ranked by their GDP and also by their GDP, including cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrencies were already 35x larger than they were on January 1st, 2018, as of when the information for this infographic was collected. If cryptocurrency keeps growing at only 1/5 the rate of 2017’s growth, it is expected to become the 6th largest economy in the world, under the US, China, Japan, Germany, and the UK. A wholly digital economy.

The world has reacted to cryptocurrencies in a variety of ways. Traditional cryptocurrencies are independent currencies, which means that governments have no direct control in their supply and demand, distribution, or security. As such, regulations have been the topic of much discussion. Around 40% of the world (99 countries) have either made Bitcoin legal or have remained neutral on the matter, while 4% of the world (10 countries) have made Bitcoin illegal, and only 3% of the world (7 countries) have restricted Bitcoin use, and 53% of the world (73 countries) have made no statements concerning it.

When it comes to the future of cryptocurrency, there are many opinions. Some experts say that cryptocurrency could be the future of our money. Many of us will likely use it in our daily transactions and in many other activities throughout our daily lives. Cryptocurrency will likely: be used by more people, will likely become popular in hyper-inflated countries, will likely be more regulated and integrated into the economy, will likely be much safer in the future, and will likely become a new mainstream means of transactions.

Some people are already using cryptocurrency for daily life activities and purchases. You may want to consider using them for some of your daily transactions. One such tool that can help you get started is our BCMY cryptocurrency wallet. BCMY is a decentralized mobile wallet app, developed using blockchain technology. It is a platform that simplifies the process of making payments, as well as trading and exchanging digital currencies and digital gold among users, with a real-time price monitoring facility built in. Some of its features include: the advanced security of biometric identification systems, an NFC (Near Field Communication) Smart Card to connect conventional financial services and cryptocurrencies, and Peer-to-Peer functions, like chat, and a map to locate merchants accepting cryptocurrencies, as well as buyers and sellers.  

Hope you enjoy the infographic below.

Have a great day,
The Blockchains.my team.