Please note: like most trading venues, we display the current mid-market rates in our price charts. When you trade, you get the current bid or ask price depending on whether you are buying or selling. There is always a slight difference between the mid-market and the current bid or ask prices. This is a natural result of how Exchange order books work.
Created by the mysterious figure of Satoshi Nakamoto back in 2009, Bitcoin is the original cryptocurrency built on a decentralised ledger, known as the blockchain. This peer-to-peer network provides the ability to send and receive transactions in a permissionless, trustless manner, as detailed in its white paper, released a year earlier in 2008.
The project is built on open-source software, which means anyone in the world can audit, contribute, and improve its code and/or documentation.
How the price of BTC is determined
A common opinion about Bitcoin is that it has no intrinsic value.
However, while this may ring true with other traditional financial instruments, being a completely new asset class, Bitcoin, and blockchain technology, does in fact hold high perceived value. This greatly affects both positive and negative sentiment among traders, increasing short to medium-term volatility.
As a young, still growing industry, the size of the market remains relatively small, with equally low amounts of liquidity. With that being said, it is a known fact that volatility has been on a continuous decline in recent years, mostly due to Bitcoin's increasing adoption and network effect.
At the same time, BTC is scarce; only 21 million UNITS will ever exist. Looking at the current Bitcoin price, the crypto already appears unaffordable to people in many parts of the world. But with crypto, You don’t have to buy a whole unit of BTC, in stark contrast to the traditional model for company stocks. You can buy fractions of a cryptocurrency, which makes it more accessible. In fact, a single BTC is divisible BY up to eight decimal points, with 0.00000001 being the smallest unit, known as a "satoshi".
1 BTC is therefore 100,000,000 satoshis. Bits is another popular denomination, with 1 BTC corresponding to 1,000,000 bits.
What are the advantages of Bitcoin (BTC)?
- Bitcoin is a better, digital version of gold: Scarce, non-confiscatable, highly divisible, and easily transportable.
- A hedge to inflation: “All fiat currencies eventually go to zero value” resulting in the inevitable loss of purchasing power.
- The internet of money: Just as we use one Internet, only one blockchain will succeed. Bitcoin’s blockchain is transparent, immutable, and highly secure.
What are the critics of Bitcoin saying?
- Bitcoin is too complex: After more than a decade, usability remains a big question mark. Sending, receiving, and securing large amounts of BTC is still too difficult for non-tech-savvy users.
- Transactions are slow and expensive: Bitcoin has unsolved scalability issues. None second layer solutions have been massively adopted yet.
- Bitcoin has a murky history: From Silk Road to its very own mysterious creator, Bitcoin has too many questions left unanswered.
How to buy BTC
With Uphold, you can buy digital currencies in just 11 clicks - even if you don’t have an account yet.
Nothing could be easier.
Here’s how fast it is to get started:
1. Go to Uphold.com and click sign up.
2. Enter your email address and personal details.
3. Click the link we send you and create a password
… and you’re off to the races!
Just start trading.
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