How Bitcoin Works
Bitcoin is changing the way people think about money by planting a seed of doubt in people’s minds — in a positive and thought-provoking way. Mind you, given the financial crises over the past decade, it’s understandable that some people are trying to come up with new and creative solutions for a better economy. Bitcoin, with its transparency and decentralization, may prove to be a powerful tool in achieving that goal.
One thing bitcoin does is bypass the current financial system and could therefore potentially provide services to unbanked and underbanked nations all around the world.
Whereas most people in the Western world find it normal to have a bank account, the story is quite different elsewhere. Some countries in Africa, for example, have an unbanked population of anywhere from 50 to 90 percent. Do these people have less right to open and own a bank account than Americans or Europeans do? Absolutely not, but doing so may come with rules so strict as to be unobtainable for many citizens.
For a while now, society has been evolving toward a cashless ecosystem: More and more people use bank and credit cards to pay for goods and services both online and offline, for example. Mobile payments — paying for stuff with your phone — are now on the rise, which may become a threat to card transactions. Bitcoin has been available on mobile device for years now.
People are slowly starting to grasp the concept of blockchain technology’s potential and future uses: A blockchain can do pretty much anything; you just have to find the right parts of the puzzles and fit them together.
Here are some examples of what bitcoin technology is capable of:
- Taking on the remittance market (transfers of funds between two parties) and coming out on top in every aspect.
- Sending money from one end of the world to the other end in only a few seconds.
- Converting money to any local currency you desire.
- Overriding the need for a bank account, making bitcoin an incredibly powerful tool in unbanked and underbanked regions of the world.
What if you live in an unbanked region and have no reliable access to the Internet? There’s a solution for that as well: Some services allow you to send text messages to any mobile phone number in the world in exchange for bitcoin or a few other digital currencies. Once again, bitcoin proves itself a very powerful tool in underbanked and unbanked regions of the world.
Perhaps the most impressive showcasing of what bitcoin can do is the bitcoin network itself. All transactions are logged and monitored in real time, giving users unprecedented access to financial data from all corners of the world. Furthermore, the blockchain enables you to track payments’ origins and destinations, even as money is on the move in real time. Such valuable insight will hopefully be adopted in the current financial infrastructure, even though there may be a period of adjustment while that takes place.