Raise your hand if the terms “cryptocurrency” or “blockchain” results in a puzzled expression on your face. I get it, because I was in the same boat until recently when my ever-inquisitive mind began to trod down the path of how emerging technologies have, and will continue to change the way we navigate our lives. Think back to when the Internet first came onto the scene. How about setting up an email? Wi-Fi? All, in their time, were considered emerging technologies that many could not understand.
Now, today, crypto-currencies (i.e. bitcoin, ethereum) are the next big thing. From shopping for basic necessities, to paying your mortgage, cryptocurrency has introduced a new way to exchange anything of value.
To give you a very quick snapshot of a topic that is typically mired in complexity, here are a few key points:
- Cryptocurrency has real world value. It can be used to make everyday purchases, pay your bills, and even buy a house.
- Cryptocurrency eliminates the middleman. The technology behind cryptocurrency (a.k.a. blockchain) allows users to exchange value directly through peer to peer, secure and verifiable transactions.
- Crypto returns continue to skyrocket. With unprecedented average returns of over 1200%, if you bought almost ANY cryptocurrency last year, you would have surely outperformed any of your mutual funds!
Like I said, a very quick snapshot, but there is much to learn from various sources about the bits and pieces of what makes this cryptocurrency machine work. For many, the concept will take a long time to become understandable. Crypto-currency is just not mainstream yet, and without that, how likely is it that we will ever really understand it?
Here are five suggestions from Carsun Knuth, VP of Operations at HybridBlock, a leader in developing advanced blockchain solutions, about how we could begin moving towards inserting everything “crypto” into the mainstream:
- Educate The World: There needs to be more engaging education platforms and mainstream press coverage about cryptocurrencies – all with the goal of teaching the masses about the benefits and opportunities of blockchain and relevant cryptocurrencies.
- Make It Easy To Buy: Improve the onboarding process, making it much easier for the average individual. It should be easy enough that Grandma and Grandpa can do it!
- Make It Easy To Use: A growing number of online and brick & mortar merchants are adopting cryptocurrency, along with other tech financial tools, to enable mainstream use of cryptocurrency. You can buy houses, boats, cars, get a haircut, a meal, and even furniture with cryptocurrency. Crypto credit cards, bill payment services and other such innovations, are empowering customers with the ability to utilize this payment method in everyday transactions.
- Make It Safe: Hacks and stolen bitcoins are becoming a thing of the past with biometric security, authentication protocols and other cutting edge security measures becoming mainstream. Digital exchanges and wallets now devote massive resources to cybersecurity, giving consumers peace of mind that their investments are safe and secure.
- Government Support & Regulation: Better regulations aimed at protecting consumers will ensure that crypto remains safe and reliable. As more regulation is put into place, better ( and more legitimate!) products and services will continue to develop, making it a safer choice for everyone.
HybridBlock Is Starting the Movement for Mainstream Adoption of “Crypto”
Knuth agrees that while there is increasing familiarity with cryptocurrency, especially Bitcoin, the wider public needs more dedicated education on the topic, as well as a greater ease of access into the space.
“Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are rapidly becoming household names across the world. Yet, the number of people who actually understand how to create their own wallet, fund it, purchase and use their first Bitcoin is still extremely low,” said Knuth. “Our mission is not only to change the way consumers perceive the crypto space and the opportunities that surround it, but also to make it easy for them to understand it and get involved.”
HybridBlock is making it easy to get involved in crypto with the introduction of HybridCentral, a unique app-driven education hub (available in December 2017) that offers users access to easy-to-follow education modules that incentivize users with active daily participation in the program. The goal? To enable consumers to quickly gain an understanding of cryptocurrency, the blockchain space, and make their first purchase using HybridTrade, the company’s advanced crypto trading platform (open for a Closed Beta experience later this year, with full launch in early 2018).
I still have a long way to go to consider myself a crypto-expert, but HybridCentral may just be one of the best tools in my arsenal as I continue my research.