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The future of bitcoin in 2019 and beyond

FOR THE better part of last year and this year, the cryptocurrency market remained bullish as worries about the volatile price of bitcoin continues to hit the headlines. But as you would image of any market, the prices of various commodities never remain the same, well, at least not the crypto one.

If you’ve been trading virtual currencies for some time, you might have realised that hardly are the prices ever stable. In this post, we’ll take a dive into the future of Bitcoin as a cryptocurrency and an alternative or a total replacement of the fiat.

For those that are new to bitcoin, allow me to briefly introduce it to you – bitcoin is a digital currency based on the blockchain technology, a publicly distributed network believed to be the ultimate source of security and record-keeping for all cryptocurrency activities.

While blockchain was initially meant to enhance the transparency of crypto transactions, other developers are now exploring the option to use this cutting-edge technology to secure online trading platforms. Well, whether that will happen or not is now just a matter of time as blueprints are already underway.
Let’s now move on to the core part of this article, the future of bitcoin in 2019 and beyond.

Could Bitcoin be the future of money?

As of now, the most straightforward answer is no; this is because as currently constituted, bitcoin does not meet the threshold for qualifying to be an official currency.
And bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency is unlikely to replace fiat currencies in the foreseeable future due to the following, among other reasons…

The first reason relates to transacting speeds; compared to SWIFT, blockchain is much slower and might cause unnecessary delays of various financial transactions. Since bitcoin runs on the blockchain network, it will typically take one 10 minutes for a transaction to go through. And in some rare instances, users have had to endure delays that lasted for days. The blockchain network is said to be incurring high amounts of transactions that were initially not planned for.

The second reason is that bitcoin prices are highly volatile. But this, by no means, insinuates that fiat currencies are not; however, the level of volatility in the cryptocurrency markets has proven to be unpredictable even to the experts.

Many bitcoin accepting businesses such restaurants have been forced to sometimes adjust their prices accordingly to carter to any losses that might arise from negative shifts.

Thirdly, if you’ve ever engaged in bitcoin mining or have come across someone who has, then you might have realized that bitcoin mining is not as easy as writing a bunch of programs and voila, you’re officially a miner. Nope, it isn’t.

A lot more goes into it especially in terms of costs such as electricity; research shows that electricity costs associated with mining could amount close to what you end up mining. This might make it an expensive exercise for small scale miners and somehow uneconomical at the end of the day.

Of course, all these drawbacks can be contained if a few loose ends are made good. For starters, the cryptocurrency space needs to establish a clear regulatory framework to manage the trade. Also, stakeholders need to create awareness about virtual currencies, just to be sure as many people as possible understand what bitcoin and other altcoins are. This will also increase its credibility in the eyes of those who have heard all sorts of terrible scams about cryptocurrencies.

how does the future look?

Moving forward, bitcoin, among all the cryptocurrencies, has an absolutely promising future.

At the time of writing this post, there were 17 million bitcoins in circulation; but, apparently, the number is set to increase to 21 million through mining. Each block mined (added to the blockchain) has an equivalent reward of 12.5 new bitcoins that are automatically generated by the mining software.

However, the reward is said to be halving after every four years; this means that by 2020, the reward might have reduced to 6.25 bitcoins for each mined block.

Lastly, on the future of the coin’s price, it has been increasingly difficult for anyone to predict how the cryptocurrency market will look like even a week later. However, there have been mixed reactions about bitcoin’s price with some claiming it has hit its all-time high and it’s now on a downward trend. For others, things are about to even get better than they were towards the end of 2017 and the start of 2018 when bitcoin prices hit more than $20,000 per coin.

Consider these two opinion some industry experts – while the head of research at Goldman Sachs, Steve Strongin, believes that the prices of the older coins will drop to zero due to their primitivity when it comes to competition, the founder of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Tim Draper believes that Bitcoin prices will hit $250,000 per coin by 2025.

As you can see, there are conflicting schools of thought regarding the future of bitcoin prices; therefore, if you’re going to trade bitcoin, it is important to understand that for now, the only certain thing is that its prices are going to be volatile.

If you study the trends and what makes the prices shift, you should be able to manipulate your profits no matter the circumstance.

That said, good luck in your trade!

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