Bitcoin Vs Ethereum: Here’s What You Need to Know 1 2167

bitcoin vs ethereum

While Bitcoin hogged the headlines last year, Ethereum is entering the mainstream consciousness as well. Although it was established in 2015, the wider public is only recently starting to hear it used more often. But, what’s the difference between Bitcoin vs Ethereum? Here’s what you need to know:

Let’s Start with Bitcoin

In what many say was a response to the financial crisis of 2008, Bitcoin emerged as a way to allow people to control their own wealth. They were open to transact freely, without the intervention or permission of any centralized institution (at a time when trust in banks was at an all-time low).

Bitcoin’s creator is widely believed to be Satoshi Nakamoto, the author of a white paper explaining the goals and purposes of the currency. He has denied being the creator, however.

What are the main objectives of Bitcoin? To offer lower transaction fees, remove the need for currency conversion, therefore allowing for global transactions in near real time, and removing the need for any centralized governing body. You will never hold a Bitcoin in your hand. It exists in digital form only.

The debate over the legality and legitimacy of Bitcoin rages on, with some countries banning it, and others allowing it. But its galloping volatility has rendered its use as a currency impractical, to say the least.

Moreover, because of its sudden surge in value last year, many people started to see it as an alternative investment vehicle. They started buying Bitcoin in the hope of it rising further in value and then cashing out later.

So, can you pay for things with Bitcoin? In some places, yes, but the list is shorter every day, since its price is so unstable.

Now for Ethereum

Bitcoin is produced by authorized miners though a technology called the blockchain. Lately people across all industries are awakening to the possibilities of the blockchain due to its immutability (somewhat debated), decentralization, and possibilities for greater efficiency in all areas.

Using cryptography, once a Bitcoin or a transaction is carried out on blockchain, it cannot be tampered with, unlike a real dollar that can be forged.

Ethereum is now the second largest and well-known cryptocurrency running on its own software platform. It has several improvements over Bitcoin. One of which is the invention of “smart contracts,” that enable transactions to happen automatically, improving on the speed of Bitcoin transactions, and reducing the need for middlemen at many points in the supply chain. No human interaction is needed.

In fact, Ethereum is both a platform and a programming language that, like Bitcoin, runs on a blockchain.

Bitcoin Vs Ethereum – Why Should You Care?

Bitcoin vs Ethereum serve two different purposes. Ethereum is mainly traded and used as a digital currency, but it is also used inside the Ethereum platform to run applications. According to Ethereum, it can be used to “codify, decentralize, secure and trade just about anything.”

While both digital currencies use cryptography, Bitcoin and Ether use two different programming languages. Ethereum transactions can be confirmed in seconds, whereas Bitcoin transactions can take several minutes. The main difference however is their purpose.

Bitcoin was created as an alternative to fiat currency, as a store of value, or means of payment. Ether exists to facilitate peer to peer contracts and applications. Ether’s primary purpose is not to be used as a payment alternative, but to enable developers to build and run distributed apps.

Still Confused?

Think of it this way. Ethereum takes the basic design and principal of Bitcoin and improves it in some ways, without competing directly, since the two exist for different reasons. That said, with the popularity of Ether on the rise and the wider public beginning to see it as an investment vehicle as well, Ethereum is giving Bitcoin a run for its (digital) money.

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Christina is a technology and business communicator who has worked with high profile ICOs and blockchain influencers to break industry news.

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Chinese Crypto Leader Li Xiaolai Suddenly Retires 0 36

One of China’s most prominent Bitcoin investors has announced his retirement from the crypto world. Billionaire Li Xiaolai is the founder of BitFund, a crypto venture capital firm that has fostered a slew of Bitcoin-related startups.

Li’s announcement of his decision to withdraw from cryptospace—and investing otherwise—came unexpectedly via his page on Chinese social media site Weibo.

“From this day on,” his post reads, according to TechNode’s translation, “I, Li Xiaolai, will personally not invest in any projects (whether it is blockchain or early stage). So, if you see ‘Li Xiaolai’ associated with any project (I have been associated with countless projects without my knowledge, 99% is not an exaggeration), just ignore it.”

Li is a former school teacher, and claims to be the first person in China to openly trade Bitcoins, rather than hiding behind its famous anonymity. Now, retired from both teaching and investing, he says he’s not sure where to go next. “I plan to spend several years to contemplate on my career change. As for what I’m doing next, I’m not sure just yet.”

Li closed his post by expressing that he still maintains a long term optimism about the blockchain.

Li’s Ventures Grew Crypto Capital, Controversey

Through BitFund, Li has incubated a number of blockchain related startups, including an off-chain wallet called Bitfoo, the crypto exchange YUNBI, and HashRatio, a miner manufacturing company. Li organized 2014’s Global Bitcoin Summit in Beijing, back when you could get a BTC for as little as $440, and years before China instated its full ban on cryptocurrencies.

Earlier this year, Li also acted as managing partner of Hangzhou Xiong’An Blockchain Fund, a billion dollar fund backed by the Hangzhou government. Li stepped down after fellow venture capitalist Chen Weizing introduced a series of accusations against him.

Included in the eleven accusations, which Chen broke on social media and messaging platform WeChat, were a supposed debt of 30,000 BTC that Chen says Li failed to pay on time. Li published a point-by-point response to Chen’s accusations, addressing the 30,000 BTC debt by saying “it’s not true… Chen is just muddying the water.”

Though Li called them “defamations,” and Chen did not offer supporting evidence for his allegations, Li said Chen’s antics “brought material and negative impacts on the reputation of Xiong’An Blockchain Fund” and that his resignation would “let the Hangzhou government continue its push for blockchain development.”

Li was the subject of controversy on another occasion when, in a candid conversation he did not know was being recorded, he outed several influential organizations as scams and said that the best way to succeed in blockchain, even if your project is worthless, is to get famous and build consensus.

The State of Crypto in the People’s Republic

All crypto and blockchain related websites are blocked by the Chinese government, and citizens are forbidden from engaging in crypto transactions. The People’s Bank of China released a statement on August 24th warning against ICOs, which they consider to be “illegal fundraising, pyramid schemes, and fraud.”

But the rules have been difficult to enforce, and crypto still enjoys an active user base in China. Beijing Sci-Tech Report, China’s oldest technology publication, is now the first Chinese publication to accept BTC as payment from its subscribers. Chinese crypto channel cnLedger announced in a tweet on September 25th that Ethereum Hotel, China’s first hotel to accept ETH as payment, is open for business in Sichuan Province.

A Crypto Landscape Without a Leader

The sudden exit of Li Xiaolai from the Chinese crypto scene could have caveats, or greater implications. Weibo users expressed their support and gratitude following his announcement, but some also speculated that his choice of words leaves room for Li to continue investing in crypto indirectly, perhaps through funds or corporate entities. Whether that will be the case or not, for many, his resignation marks the loss of a public blockchain leader.

The Block Talk Award Winners Announced 1 1039

Thanks to everyone for submitting your favorite blockchain innovators and influencers. Our editorial team had a great time learning about new projects and individuals that are building a foundation for our future with blockchain technology, and realizing amazing technological feats in the present.

While it was difficult to select just one project or individual in each category, we’re excited to announce the winners of our first inaugural Block Talk Awards.

  • Best ICO Analysis & Commentary – Tatiana Koffman, Various Outlets
  • Most Engaged Community – Rod Turner, Various Outlets
  • Favorite Blockchain Blogger – Rachel Wolfson, Forbes
  • Best Crypto Journalist – Jordan French, The Street
  • Innovative Female Founder – Amber Baldet, Clovyr
  • Best Podcast Host(s) – Joel Comm and Travis Wright, Bad Crypto
  • Favorite Blockchain Event Host – Adryenn Ashley, Loly.io
  • Top Crypto Speaker – Ian Balina, Crypto World Tour
  • Most Innovative Blockchain CEO – Trevor Koverko, Polymath
  • Top Social Entrepreneur – Evan Caron, Swytch

Winners in each category will receive a $1500 media credit on The Block Talk, access to a network of TBT Award honorees, and VIP access to TBT events in 2019.

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