A Brief History of Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency
Bitcoin has brought a revolution in the world. Since its start in 2008, it has grown tremendously and has seen its value increase a great deal. Many world-known companies are also accepting cryptocurrencies now. Some notable examples are the tech giant Microsoft, retail company Overstock, famous travel website Expedia, and gift card service eGifter.
Initially, a lot of people had doubts about using it but now more and more people are seeking information and advice about this cryptocurrency. Crypto currency trading is also becoming more common among people while the use of other currencies like Ethereum, Litecoin, and Ripple, etc is also increasing. These cryptocurrencies are regarded as very safe and trusted around the world. They have great advantages that make them ideal for trading.
Now you don’t need a purse full of money in order to buy something. Because shopping has become much easier now, and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin have taken it a step ahead.
Bitcoin is regarded as the first established cryptocurrency. But many people had tried before to create online currencies. Bit Gold and B-Money were the examples of online currencies which didn’t succeed.
Satoshi Nakamoto is credited with the invention of Bitcoin who first posted a paper called Bitcoin – A Peer to Peer Electronic Cash System to a cryptographic mailing list in 2008. Surprisingly, no one knows the true identity of Satoshi Nakamoto. He left the project in 2010 and disappeared.
In 2009, the software became available to the general public and mining, the process of creating new Bitcoins, also began. A programmer named Laszlo Hanyecz conducted the first commercial transaction using his Bitcoins. He traded 10,000 Bitcoins to buy two Papa John’s pizzas. Imagine the value of those Bitcoins if he would have held onto them?
Seeing the increasing popularity of Bitcoins, other cryptocurrencies also started emerging. These cryptocurrencies tried to improve on the original design and offered more anonymity and speed etc. However, they could never gain the same popularity as the original Bitcoin which is still the most prominent and valuable cryptocurrency. It is said that there are currently over 1,500 cryptocurrencies in circulation. Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecoin are some of the other famous cryptocurrencies in the world now.
In January 2014, Mt. Gox (the world’s largest Bitcoin exchange) got embroiled in a scandal. This company which was handling over seventy percent of all Bitcoin transactions in 2014 suddenly went offline and so 850,000 Bitcoins belonging to different customers were lost. The investigations concluded later that most of the missing Bitcoins were stolen from the company. It is estimated that those missing coins would have been worth $4.4 billion today.
Bitcoin saw a huge increase in its value in 2017. By the end of the year, Bitcoin’s price had reached about $20,000. However, it started to drop in 2018 and in January 2019 its value was $3,747 which meant it fell about 80 percent since the all-time high. Currently, the price of Bitcoin is around $10,000.