Chris Briskey, the owner of a shop in Yakima, Washington, purchased a Bitcoin ATM in April this year. Soon, the ATM began attracting those who purchase, or are interested in purchasing, Bitcoin from all over the state. Briskey calls Bitcoin “digital gold” and sees the potential that this cryptocurrency has to change the way that people interact with money on a large scale.
In rural areas, cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are seen to be a niche interest, but there are signs that cryptocurrencies and blockchain are beginning to venture away from this niche. Major technology companies are exploring the possibility of using blockchain to record transactions of any item of value, and major banks have been determining whether blockchain can be used in their operations.
Perhaps one of the biggest influences on the booming success of Bitcoin is the recent financial crisis in the United States. This incident created a distrust of traditional financial institutions, such as banks, with many also distrusting the federal government’s abilities to regulate those institutions. This may have been such a large influence because Bitcoin is not regulated by any singular authority, instead, its transactions are stored in a public ledger called the blockchain which is maintained by a network of communicating nodes and miners running open-source software. All records of transactions are not kept in one centralised location but are spread over multiple networks that will update their ledgers at the same time. Therefore, those that do not trust singular authorities are more likely to invest in Bitcoin.
Bitcoin is one of the most popular cryptocurrencies worldwide because it has good long-term potential. With it gaining traction and garnering the attention of banks and large technology companies alike, it is no wonder the price of Bitcoin is expected to erupt soon.