The cryptocurrency market has been flourishing since the beginning of the pandemic. While the conventional markets were in shock, new crypto coins rose to prominence, and Bitcoin reached new highs. Support from high-profile investors and institutional adoption has made cryptocurrencies a part of the mainstream. The applications are not limited to trading and investment. Discover new exciting uses of cryptocurrencies and the technologies behind them.
Case 1 – Video Games
Since the 1990s, personal computers and consoles have come a long way. Video games are graphic masterpieces, immersive, and powerful. Even slots have evolved to include impressive narratives and interactive features. Now, popular games may be played using Bitcoin.
The official Microsoft store for Xbox and PlayStation accepts the leading cryptocurrency. PC gamers may also purchase content for virtual coins.
Case 2 – Blockchain-Based Money Transfers
Blockchain, the technology underlying Bitcoin, appeared as a bold alternative to conventional banking. It allows every computer on the network to verify transactions, essentially working as a banker for a monetary reward. Crypto transfer apps are now increasingly popular, and finance is the primary sphere of application.
Blockchain helps institutions perform transactions faster and at low cost. They eliminate red tape and reduce third-party fees. According to ComputerWorld, major banks may save up to $12 billion per annum by using blockchain. Individuals are attracted by the convenience, low cost, security, and speed of such transactions. Here are some of the latest applications.
Cryptocurrency Loans and Deposits
Gemini is a reputable digital exchange platform headquartered in New York. It acts as a facilitator and custodian. Users can buy, sell, and store digital assets like Bitcoin and Ether, and utilize them in other ways. For example, they apply for credit cards with crypto rewards or deposit their funds to collect interest. The Gemini Earn program for deposits provides up to 7.4% interest.
Circle, a company based in Boston, is designed to facilitate crypto investments and exchanges between friends. The amount of monthly transactions has already exceeded $2 million, and the network is growing fast. The provider offers money transfer services and investment products. Seven coins are now accepted, including Monero, Zcash, and Bitcoin.
Case 3 – Adoption of Smart Contracts
This system appeared as an alternative to blockchain. All operations are performed and verified by algorithms. Smart contracts cut out the middleman, making transactions entirely decentralized.
Such systems provide an unprecedented level of accountability for all parties involved. Compliance is guaranteed, while businesses save time and money. Technologies based on smart contracts are being implemented in many spheres. They are increasingly popular in governance, healthcare, and real estate.
For example, BurstIQ, a healthcare provider in Denver, uses big data contracts to transfer sensitive medical information between doctors and patients. The contracts determine the parameters of data sharing. Mediachain, which was acquired by Spotify in 2017, is a transparent decentralized system for artists. Its users get paid for their content based on smart contracts, in full and on time.
Case 4 – Media Use
The biggest problems in this industry are related to data protection and royalties. Research by Deloitte shows that since the media went digital, copyright infringement has become more widespread than ever. Blockchain allows creators to protect their intellectual property better and receive fair payment for their work. The ledger principle makes piracy virtually impossible, as it can prevent a piece of content, such as an mp3 file, from existing in several places simultaneously.
Austin-based Steem is a no ordinary social media platform, as it is backed by blockchain. Here, tokens function as incentives that encourage users to produce and share unique content. Allocation of the tokens depends on the upvote count. Creators on Steem have received over $40 million in tokens so far.
Digital Media, Journalism
Civil, a company based in New York, supports independent journalism using its own cryptocurrency — the CVL tokens. This blockchain technology powers independent newsrooms that work without ads. This is a community of experts that do not have to comply with the requirements of any entity. Here, journalism is truly decentralized.
To Sum up
These are only some of the most innovative applications of crypto. The coins and the technologies behind them are attractive for many industries, as they make transactions transparent, fast, and secure. Cryptocurrency is so much more than a store of value. It is a facilitator of technological advancement across the board.