Bitcoins are a new type of digital currency that can be used as a form of online payment such as the credit card processing or a bank transfer. They can be stored in a digital wallet, which is a web application that can be downloaded to your PC or mobile while each transaction is made through it. Every bitcoin is worth a certain amount of money and can be acquired online for dollars, euros, yens etc. Prices may float depending on the natural supply or demand; as of today, one bitcoin is worth about 330 USD. What makes this virtual cash exceptional is its free marketplace with no central authority empowered to influence the purchasing power of a bitcoin. Unlike traditional paper money that can be easily printed, new bitcoins are created by so-called “mining” – a challenging and competitive process requiring a decent amount of hardware investment. Also the whole amount of the currency is limited to 21 million in this way bitcoins are protected from hyper-inflation or any other kind of financial manipulations – its value solely depends on the current demand-supply ratio on the market.
Why Use Bitcoins? Secure Payments, Consumer Identity Protection, Low Administrative Costs.
So far, online transactions required participation of a third party: an online payment system, a credit card company or the bank. With bitcoin, payments are made securely between the buyer and the seller providing a higher level of protection for both sides. Transfers made through the bitcoin protocol do not reveal any sensitive user information practically eliminating the risk of common mischiefs such as false chargebacks or identity theft. Since there is no need of a merchant account bitcoin transactions are processed quickly, privately and securely with reasonably low administrative costs.
Where Can I Purchase Bitcoins? Bitcoin Exchange, e-Commerce, Bitcoin ATM.
One of the easiest ways to acquire bitcoins is at a Bitcoin Exchange in your country. All you need is a valid bank account number and a bitcoin digital wallet address – the instructions are simple and the transaction should take no longer than 20 minutes. If you are running a website selling goods or providing services, you can start accepting bitcoins as a form of payment by installing an e-commerce plugin for WordPress, Drupal or other similar platforms. Another new way of buying bitcoins is via bitcoin ATM – a newly integrated device available in few locations around the world, allowing users to purchase bitcoins instantly in exchange for a certain amount of cash inserted into the machine.
Where Can I Use Bitcoins? Online and Offline for Goods and Services.
Bitcoins can be used anywhere across the internet where they are accepted as form of payment by retail stores, merchant websites or blogging platforms, for example WordPress and Wikileaks.com. Bitcoins can be also used as gift vouchers for retailer stores. Some people choose to keep bitcoins for investment purposes hoping their price will rise in the future.
Recognized by over 1000 merchant websites and businesses bitcoin currency is gaining hold, gradually becoming a mainstream online exchange. A growing consumer base proves that, despite its volatile prices, bitcoins currency can be trusted.