The year has just begun but already there have been considerable shifts in the structure of the cryptocurrency markets. This is an industry that guarantees nothing for no one, as big names can easily supplanted with lesser known ones that offer a better product. Competition in the crypto universe is brutal and no product or platform can afford to sleep if its wants to make it to the next stage in the life of the industry. After making searing surges throughout 2017, at the tail end of the year and running into the first days of this year, another cryptocurrency has been making its own waves that saw it temporarily replace Ethereum as the second most valuable crypto asset by market capitalization, this crypto coin is known as Ripple
What is Ripple?
Ripple is one of the earlier blockchain startups that came after a few cracks started showing in the armor of Bitcoin, as it started becoming obvious it will struggle with operability in the times ahead due to its rather sluggish transaction speeds, as well as growing transaction fees which have now all manifested. Ripple unlike most other blockchain outfits however, only seeks to use the brilliance of the blockchain technology in order to make the present financial industry vehicles ever more efficient. Ripple is an international value transfer vehicle which can be used to transfer fiat currencies, cryptocurrencies, asset titles and even mobile credits from one part of the world to another at breathtaking speeds.
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Features of Ripple
Ripple takes a lot of different paths from most cryptocurrency products. It has a few features that make it unique, some of which include:
Centralization: Unlike most other cryptocurrency and blockchain tech outfits, Ripple is one that is owned by a company and is not decentralized like others. As it wants to interact and be part of what is a very conservative and highly regulated industry such as the banking field, Ripple had to take a centralized approach as no bank will take any platform with anonymous creators and no known chain of command serious.
Speed of Transactions: Cryptocurrencies in general have been created to be the fastest means in which any one can transfer money or anything of value from any corner of the earth. This promise had come into question as products such as Bitcoin can now take over a day to conclude transactions. Ripple bucks this trend as it offers its users the chance to not only send cryptocurrencies but fiat money as well in as little as 2 seconds to any part of the world. It aims to use this speed in replacing the overly expensive and terrible slow SWIFT international bank transfer in the present financial industry.
Mining: Unlike most cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin which are mined by their users using expensive mining hardware coupled to computers, Ripple is a pre-minted token that is already on ground in its totality. There are 100 billion total Ripple tokens to ever be created of which are just over 38 billion presently in circulation with the rest in custody of the producing company, which are released to the buying public in tranches.