Thousands of different cryptocurrencies have arisen in the since Bitcoin’s (BTC) 2009 genesis block. Even though newer assets come with different technology and PayPal to Visa to Square are embracing cryptocurrencies. I2c President Jim McCarthy tells Karen Webster what it’ll take to make digital assets spendable. EATONTOWN, N.J., Nov. 02, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Wayside Technology Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: WSTG) (“Wayside” or the “Company”), an IT channel com… Is this the digital silver? Cryptocurrency exchange Zebpay, which claims to have a user base of over 3 million users in India, is now exploring broader crypto market opportunities, such as digital collectibles. With its launch of a new marketplace called Dazzle, Zebpay has chosen to expand into the non-fungible token space. NFTs are unique but tradeable blockchain assets, which can be used […] According to a new report, the depreciation of some currencies against the U.S. dollar is contributing to the declining international remittances. After touchin
Thousands of different cryptocurrencies have arisen in the since Bitcoin’s (BTC) 2009 genesis block. Even though newer assets come with different technology and new bells and whistles, Bitcoin still has an upper hand in a key category, according to a November report from crypto data firm Coin Metrics.
Due to its relatively older framework, people sometimes compare Bitcoin to early, outdated versions of other technological innovations, such as dial-up internet, the report explains:
“Too often, these are part of deliberate marketing strategies pushed by proponents of emerging cryptoassets that reportedly succeed where Bitcoin has failed. Tragically, newcomers confronted by a strictly technological comparison framework are ultimately pushed to the margins, especially as debates turn hyper-technical.”
Technological ability is important. Cryptocurrencies, with their underlying blockchains and ecosystems, however, also serve as forms of money or value in addition to their technological undergirding. Therefore, asset distribution plays a key role in the equation, the report notes.
Cryptocurrencies have visited countless headlines over the last decade, especially in 2017, when many alternative crypto assets posted tremendous gains for holders. Many people and teams have produced their own digital assets, some of which compete against Bitcoin’s value proposition.
When Bitcoin became a more well-known name, however, organic asset growth became difficult. Once people saw viability for new assets, what stopped them from allocating different amounts of their created asset to certain groups, including specific friends or investors? Essentially, since some type of financial worth is expected at the start of any freshly created asset now, such new assets lack even distribution among people.
Coin Metrics’ report peers into centralization seen in cryptocurrency holdings via data from those assets’ respective blockchains. “Cronyism, amongst other unfair supply distribution models, inescapably result in incredibly centralized monetary bases,” the report explains.
“Through on-chain data, we can identify ownership structures antithetical to Bitcoin’s and quantify the degree of wealth centralization within their digital economies,” the report adds.
Essentially, Bitcoin started as an experiment unlike anything before its time. Very few people understood how the asset worked at its outset. “There wasn’t even an exchange rate for the earliest of adopters to begin to fathom valuing their Bitcoins,” Coin Metrics explained:
“Coupled with the aforementioned technical complexity, the results of early experiments on Bitcoin were disastrous: there is an exorbitant amount of BTC that is believed to have been permanently lost during that period. Transactors, after all, treated Bitcoin as it was back then: a curious experiment of digital monopoly money.”
Through charts and examples, the report explains Bitcoin’s early journey, which yielded vast coin distribution. Mining activities have also impacted the asset’s dispersion. The data in the report, however, relies heavily on crypto wallet address analysis. Participants sometimes use a number of wallets and addresses, so accuracy of the results remains questionable.
Crypto analyst, trader and YouTuber Tone Vays has also expressed similar points in the past about Bitcoin’s decentralization.
Last month marked the 12-year anniversary of Bitcoin’s white paper release.
i2c President: Blockchain Will Unlock Crypto
Cryptos are having a moment.
Scan the headlines over the past few weeks and cryptos, well beyond the marquee bitcoin, are making inroads into mainstream consumer and business activities.
PayPal is opening its network to allow consumers to shop using cryptocurrency. Square bought $50 million of bitcoin. J.P. Morgan said late in the month that it has gone live with JPM Coin.
In an interview with Karen Webster, i2c President Jim McCarthy said we’re still a ways out from mainstream adoption — but the shift is coming.
It is the rule of thumb, when it comes to secular change, that very few innovations come along to rapidly change the state of payments themselves.
“Most things take 10 to 15 years to drive through the ecosystem,” McCarthy told Webster — especially when a range of stakeholders are involved, spanning two-sided markets, consumers, merchants and governments.
To get a sense of just how hard it is for cryptocurrencies to gain, well, currency in everyday life, consider bitcoin, perhaps the granddaddy of cryptocurrencies — and still the 900-pound gorilla in the space, with roughly two-thirds of the market cap across the entire sector.
Webster noted that bitcoin has been around for a decade, and while the conventional wisdom had been that the digital offering would be used far and wide as a payment transacting conduit, those predictions have been wildly off the mark.
Part of the reason bitcoin failed to live up to the anticipation, contended McCarthy, has been that the enthusiasm surrounding buying and holding (and speculating) with bitcoin as an asset class has focused on building hedges against other holdings (as gold has traditionally been used).
It was (and in some cases still is) this speculative wild west of digital coins that has held back cryptos from being tied more closely to commerce, said McCarthy. The mechanics and clumsiness of it all have not helped. The individual who yearned to spend fractional bitcoins on a cup of coffee was subject to slow transaction times and wild pricing swings that ratcheted up (or down) the value of the coin itself, and thus what that fraction might be worth.
The Difference A Decade Makes
But in the decade since bitcoin’s debut, technologies have evolved in the payments ecosystem that are helping set the stage for cryptos to become more widely adopted.
There’s tremendous efficiency from a pure network perspective, he explained, much in the same way, the internet — and the efficiency of the internet — has changed. Advances in peer-to-peer connectivity and the emergence of tokens as a payments vehicle are opening up new avenues for cryptos.
The emergence of the “network of network” strategies on the parts of Visa and Mastercard have opened the door for faster payments, for the electronification of payments — and for blockchain to underpin it all.
As McCarthy stated (with a nod to efforts such as Visa’s teaming up with Wirex to bring crypto to everyday spending), “50 million plus merchants and an acceptance markets, that’s hard to replicate in terms of a two-sided network.”
Against that backdrop, he said, using Visa and Mastercard as access points and leveraging the range of wallets on offer to store the digital currencies can be a powerful agent of payments change. Back in May, i2c Inc. announced a partnership with Crypto.com’s end-to-end crypto ecosystem, which consists of a Visa crypto debit card and a wallet app to buy and sell crypto and earn cash-back rewards in crypto form. In this case, maintained McCarthy, digital assets are made spendable.
“We are the infrastructure that takes what is effectively a virtual wallet — in a mobile or online sense — and connects it to the real world, either eCommerce or face to face with a card,” he said.
The Demographics — And Digital Fiat
According to McCarthy, i2c’s own partners are seeing that, in his words, “the sky’s the limit” when it comes to making digital assets into everyday currency.
Mainstream adoption will be made easier in part by demographics, as younger generations are more at ease with using mobile devices to transact, and where developing economies in Latin America and Asia do not have the legacy banking infrastructure in place seen elsewhere, translating into greenfield opportunities for crypto players.
As cryptos have garnered more attention in financial services, naturally, governments and central banks have thrown their hats into the ring — and thus digital fiat is seriously under consideration. China, of course, has been a leader here in its efforts to trial and deploy a digital yuan. McCarthy said, too, that Sweden has also been making some headway with its digital krona.
“It lays the groundwork, certainly for study research and development, if not full-fledged movement,” he said of central bank efforts and frameworks being developed by the BIS.
In the meantime, as central banks look toward a rough timeframe of 2025 to get up and running with digital fiat, McCarthy said that over the short term we’ll see more practical use cases leveraging cryptocurrencies — especially in the business-to-business space. He pointed to the JPM Coin as a key advance in how cryptos might be used to reduce friction inherent in the financial services ecosystem.
In this case, he told Webster, the coin is being separated from its pure function as a monetary asset and being used as a token that can be passed in real time between known entities as a way to resolve the inefficiencies tied to cross-border correspondent banking.
It’s a space, he said, that’s ripe for disruption.
“There’s a lot of inefficiency, still, in business-to-business commercial payments that could very well be solved in combination with having fiat accounts and crypto token that you’re able to pass among trusted parties,” he said.
Longer term, in the drive to make crypto spendable, beyond the rails themselves, McCarthy said that compliance and security standards must be robust. Crypto has been held up by critics as a conduit to fraud and money laundering.
But, as he noted, getting into the crypto ecosystem in the first place is no easy task, and in fact the security measures in place — know your customer (KYC), documentation spanning passports and licenses — are more rigorous than are in place when using cash, that most ubiquitous store of value.
“We apply all those same kind of values to anything we’ve been doing with any multicurrency platform,” he told Webster of i2c’s own security processes. “We leverage that information before you get onboarded to get a card. This is building on years of best practices in the payment space.”
Blockchain remains a key driver of cryptos’ future, both as unit of currency and store of value. The immutable, decentralized ledgers mean that transmitting everything from payments to digital drivers’ licenses to health records in a secure and portable manner holds much promise.
“It just takes time,” he told Webster, of the wider embrace of crypto and the blockchain rails that looms on the horizon “I think we’ll look back and again, in 10, 15 years — and say, ‘Oh, that was fast.’”
cryptocurrency, digital money, economy, Featured News, Fiat, i2C, Masterclass, News, pymnts tv, tokenization, video
Wayside Technology Group Sets Third Quarter 2020 Conference Call for November 10, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. ET | Markets Insider
EATONTOWN, N.J., Nov. 02, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Wayside Technology Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: WSTG) (“Wayside” or the “Company”), an IT channel company providing innovative sales and distribution solutions, will hold a conference call on Tuesday, November 10, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern time to discuss its financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2020. The results will be reported in a press release prior to the conference call.
Wayside management will host the conference call, followed by a question and answer period.
Date: Tuesday, November 10, 2020
Time: 5:00 p.m. Eastern time
Toll-free dial-in number: (844) 683-0552
Conference ID: 1485945
Please call the conference telephone number 5-10 minutes prior to the start time. An operator will register your name and organization. If you have any difficulty connecting with the conference call, please contact Gateway Investor Relations at 1-949-574-3860.
About Wayside Technology Group
Wayside Technology Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: WSTG) is an IT channel company and parent of Climb Channel Solutions, an international value-added distributor for Emerging Technology Vendors with solutions for Security, Data Management, Connectivity, Storage & HCI, Virtualization & Cloud and Software & ALM. Climb provides vendors access to thousands of VARs, MSPs, CSPs and other resellers. Climb holds an IT-70 GSA contract vehicle that provides resellers and vendors with a competitive edge within the Public Sector.
Additional information can be found by visiting www.waysidetechnology.com.
Forward Looking Statements
The statements in this release concerning the Company’s future prospects are forward-looking statements that involve certain risks and uncertainties. These risk and uncertainties include, without limitation, the continued acceptance of the Company’s distribution channel by vendors and customers, the timely availability and acceptance of new products, product mix, market conditions, contribution of key vendor relationships and support programs, as well as factors that affect the software industry in general and other factors. Currently, one of the most significant factors, however, is the potential adverse effect of the current pandemic of the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, on the Company, the global economy and financial markets. The extent to which COVID-19 impacts the Company will depend on future developments, which are highly uncertain and cannot be predicted with confidence, including the scope, severity and duration of the pandemic, the actions taken to contain the pandemic or mitigate its impact, and the direct and indirect economic effects of the pandemic and containment measures, including the impact on our reseller partners and the end customer markets they serve, among others. The forward-looking statements contained herein are also subject generally to other risks and uncertainties that are described from time to time in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Chief Financial Officer
Markets Insider and Business Insider Editorial Teams were not involved in the creation of this post.
Author: finanzen.net GmbH
Know Your Digital Assets: Litecoin (LTC)
There are thousands of cryptocurrency available in the crypto space today. However, not all can be considered reliable for investment in digital assets.
In this series of Know Your Digital Asset (KYDA) series, we will explore cryptocurrencies in which are widely accepted by regulated exchanges and with real-case use.
What is Litecoin?
Litecoin (LTC) was introduced to the world of cryptocurrency in October 2011 by Charlie Lee. His vision for LTC is to offer a faster and cheaper alternative for Bitcoin (BTC). It is dubbed as the digital silver, while BTC is the digital gold.
LTC is using a similar coding core like BTC with few improvements. It is four times faster in block time and four times bigger in total supply than BTC. LTC able to process 2.5 minutes per block with 84 million total supply. LTC also offers lower transaction fees compared to BTC.
LTC blockchain is using the Proof-of-Work (PoW) protocol like BTC. However, it uses a different algorithm called Scrypt that allows miners to use consumer-grade hardware and allows LTC to be ASIC-resistant.
LTC Fact Sheet
For the past few years, LTC has been one of the top cryptocurrencies in terms of market capitalization and allows LTC to be recognized and accepted widely among early adopters and investors.
Here are some facts about LTC leaving its mark in the history of cryptocurrency.
- The founder of LTC, Charlie Lee, sold all his LTC holdings to avoid conflict of interest.
- LTC price peaked around $360 in Dec 2017.
- LTC is among the first to adopt the SegWit protocol.
- The MimbleWimble (MW) protocol will help to improve LTC privacy and security features.
- LTC is the first cryptocurrency to sponsor the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) in 2018.
- LTC is named the official cryptocurrency for the American football team, Miami Dolphins, in 2019.
- LTC Foundation established a partnership with Atari in 2020.
For Malaysian, LTC is an approved digital asset and available on the approved Digital Asset Exchanges.
LTC stands through the test of time and controversies and still going. That is quite the feats.
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This person is trying to bridge digital assets to the public together with Techcryption.
Author: November 10, 2020 12:19 PM
Zebpay is launching a nonfungible token marketplace in India
Cryptocurrency exchange Zebpay, which claims to have a user base of over 3 million users in India, is now exploring broader crypto market opportunities, such as digital collectibles.
With its launch of a new marketplace called Dazzle, Zebpay has chosen to expand into the non-fungible token space. NFTs are unique but tradeable blockchain assets, which can be used to represent all manner of virtual and real-world goods.
NFTs are unlike cryptocurrencies in that they can carry unique metadata and vary in their degree of rarity. They are increasingly becoming popular for tokenizing markets as diverse as video game items, digital art and fantasy sports.
A Zebpay representative told Cointelegraph that the exchange is seeking to promote blockchain engagement beyond cryptocurrencies among India’s 5 million active crypto investors. In areas such as the digital art market, the exchange believes NFTs could offer Indian artists new opportunities to protect their digital copyrights and monetize their work. The representative further noted that the NFT global market has now hit $100 million in total value, and growing, making it a promising sector.
For now, the marketplace is launching with Zebpay’s native NFT, called Dazzle. Zebpay’s representative said that the exchange plans to distribute tokens to members through various programs:
“We’ll start with reward tokens offering zero membership or trading fees: some to our most loyal and active members, some as random airdrops, and some through fun contests. We probably will never sell them. We want to seed the ecosystem and let our members grow it organically. If they want to trade their NFTs, they can.”
As reported, a wide range of franchises — from top soccer clubs to Formula 1 — are increasingly recognizing branded digital collectibles, NFT auctions, and other blockchain-based ecosystems as efficient means to monetize fan engagement and construct markets for online viral phenomena and trends.
Blockchain developers such as Vitalik Buterin have long identified these diverse applications as a potential route for the technology to gain traction among more varied markets, beyond retail and professional digital asset trading.
Currency Depreciation to Blame for 7.2% Drop in Global Remittances: World Bank Supports Digital Remittances
According to a new report, the depreciation of some currencies against the U.S. dollar is contributing to the declining international remittances. After touching an all-time high of $548 billion in 2019, the World Bank report now projects remittances to drop 7.2% in 2020 to $508 billion and a further decline of 7.5% to $470 billion in 2021.
In its Migration and Development Brief 33, the World Bank details how the Covid-19 induced currency depreciation has affected the flow of global remittances. In the brief, the authors point to the exchange rate between the U.S. dollar and the source currencies for remittances. Detailing how this has affected the flow of remittances from Russia, the report says:
The weakening of the ruble against the U.S. dollar, by over 26% since the beginning of 2020, has reduced remittances from Russia in U.S. dollar terms. Remittances to Central Asia have therefore declined significantly.
The World Bank data indeed projects that remittances sent from Europe and Central Asia will register the sharpest decline (globally) of 16% in 2020. On the other hand, remittance flows to Latin America, and the Caribbean are expected to decline by just 0.2% in 2020.
Still, the report identifies the other “foremost factors” driving this decline as the “weak economic growth and uncertainties around jobs” particularly in the case of the United States and European countries. For oil-rich countries like Saudi Arabia and Russia however, it is the weak prices for the commodity that are driving down the flow of remittances.
Meanwhile, after detailing the impact of Covid-19 and the associated mobility restrictions, the World Bank report goes on to assert that formal recognition of “digital remittances” will help to keep funds flowing even in tough times. The report continues:
“Governments must support remittance infrastructure, including by recognizing remittance services as essential, reducing the burden of remittance fees on migrants, incentivizing digital money transfers, and mitigating factors that prevent customers or service providers of digital remittances from accessing banking services.”
Although the World Bank report fails to specifically identify cryptocurrencies as one of the digital remittances it is touting, studies and reports already show the increasing use of crypto assets when remitting by some migrant groups.
For instance, a news.Bitcoin.com report suggests that there is a growing use of cryptocurrencies as rails for remitting funds across borders. A different report also shows a marked growth in peer-to-peer trade volumes after countries imposed lockdown restrictions.
Covid-19 restrictions may have inadvertently increased the appeal of cryptocurrencies. The second wave of growing infections and the resultant restrictions will only reinforce their place in this new normal. As the World Bank has advised, countries can reduce the impact of such restrictions by embracing digital remittances.
Do you agree that digital remittances can halt the declining flow of funds? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.
COVID-19, cryptos, currency depreciation, depreciation, digital remittances, Exchange rates, international money transfers, lockdown, MIgrants, oil rich, remittances, World Bank
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