Bitcoin was invented in 2009 but it wasn’t until a couple of years later that people considered it could be used widely and for a variety of different things. Over the last couple of years, from 2017 onwards, bitcoin and cryptocurrency have become more widely used. Bitcoin can be bought, sold, and traded with ease and be used for a variety of different functions. So what Bitcoin innovations do we have today, that we didn’t 10 years, or more ago?
You may have seen bitcoin ATMs dotted around Santa Clarita – there are in fact around nine in the area. But what are they for? These kiosks allow individuals to buy bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies using fiat currency. They can be paid for either in cash or via credit or debit card. Some machines even allow the user to exchange their cryptocurrency for cash. In order to use these machines, it’s necessary to have an existing account and of course, a cryptocurrency wallet to deposit into.
The very first cryptocurrency ATM was launched in 2013 in Vancouver. Since then, they have popped up all over the world. In the US alone, there are some 2,342 bitcoin ATMs, rising to more than 14,000 globally as of the start of 2021. This shows tremendous growth over seven years and signals that this could increase at an even higher pace in the years to come.
Bitcoin mobile wallets
Until recently, a wallet was something you kept in your pocket or purse. Made from leather or nylon, it has traditionally been used to store credit cards, photos, and coins. But in 2021, a wallet more often than not refers to the digital kind. These electronic wallets allow users to store cryptocurrencies of various denominations, electronic cards, and virtual cash.
In addition to bitcoin wallets, a number of bitcoin saving and storage solutions have become available. Some investors prefer to hold their bitcoin in a savings account that works for them (through the acquisition of interest), as well as holding the currency. Investors will seek out the best crypto interest and savings accounts, and make a decision on which offers the best benefits for them.
Some estimates say there could be as many as 70 million crypto wallets being used on a regular basis along with thousands of bitcoin savings accounts. The number of blockchain wallet users has also been increasing, demonstrating how far we’ve come since bitcoin was introduced over a decade ago.
Until quite recently, bitcoin was something you bought, held, or traded. Very few people could conceive of using it to buy or sell products. But here we are in 2021 and a growing number of merchants are accepting bitcoin. You can buy a Burger King or KFC with bitcoin, pay your phone bill, pay a lawyer, shop for groceries, or even buy a house.
While bitcoin replacing fiat currency is some way off, due mainly to concerns over volatility, it is certainly becoming more widely used. A variety of crypto payment services have popped up that facilitate the payment for products and services in various virtual currencies. This makes it much easier and less risky for merchants and customers alike.
The rate at which bitcoin and crypto adoption has grown makes us wonder where we will be in ten years from now!