Swap Tracker
June Katz

June Katz

151 Articles

I am a crypto enthusiast. I spend most of my time writing or chasing the next cool topic to write about. Lucky for me, this aligns nicely with my interests, which include: looking for patterns in the world around me, digging deep into causes and effects of things and making sense of unlikely coincidences.

SwapSpace's Birthday Celebration: A Lottery for Our Customers with $1000 in Prizes!

SwapSpace's Birthday Celebration: A Lottery for Our Customers with $1000 in Prizes!

June Katz 2 min read
Hey guys, it’s SwapSpace’s birthday! This year, we decided to celebrate by giving you a chance to win $1000 in prizes — up to $300 individually! To enter the lottery, during the period from August 5 to August 15 just rate the exchange service you’ve used to swap your coins on SwapSpace. We ask you to leave your rating at the end of the exchange process — or you can do it here . On August 15, we will randomly choose a winner who will get $100 from us! But that’s not all — some of our partners have chipped in to help us celebrate, so there are even more prizes for the participants who will rate those exchanges in particular. One of the winners of those bonus prizes may turn out to be the same person that wins the SwapSpace's prize — in that case, the amounts will add up! One random person who rates Swapuz will get $200 ; One random person who rates ChangeHero will also get $200 ; One random person who rates QuickEx will get $200 too; One random person who rates LetsExchange will get $100 ; Two random people who rate Exolix will get $100 each. We will send the prizes to the winners in the target currency of the swap that they rated to enter our raffle.  Let's look at an example: If you leave your rating after swapping BTC to ETH and win SwapSpace's main prize — we’ll send you $100 in ETH to the same address you used to receive ETH in your exchange; If this rating was for, say, Swapuz, you may be randomly chosen by them in addition to us — in which case you will get $300 in ETH ($100 from SwapSpace and bonus $200 from the exchange parther); And in this same example, even if you haven't won the main prize, you still have a chance to get that bonus from Swapuz ($200) if they randomly choose you as a winner. The same principle applies to other exchanges listed above (and other currencies as well). Good luck — and have some nice swaps!
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SwapSpace Is Opening the Crypto Exchange Reviews Section!

SwapSpace Is Opening the Crypto Exchange Reviews Section!

June Katz 1 min read
Greetings! We are happy to announce the launch of our new “Cryptocurrency Exchange Reviews” section! You can read our partners’ reviews from customers who have used them — or leave your own. Here’s how it works (it’s simple!): To publish a review, you need to have completed a cryptocurrency exchange on SwapSpace via one of our partner exchange services. We will ask for your exchange ID, so keep that in mind! You can just leave a star rating for your exchange — or tell other customers how it went in more detail. You can edit your review later, so if you forgot something — don’t worry. Our partners read the reviews too, so you can be sure that your feedback will not go unnoticed! Every review helps our customers decide whether they should trust an exchange service with their funds — and for our part, we’re working hard ensure that all reviews we publish are real and legit, and the customers’ concerns are heard. We’d love for you to contribute to the ever-growing community of crypto users, too — so, if you’ve made a swap recently, we’ll be grateful for your feedback! And if you’re still undecided — you’re welcome to read some cryptocurrency exchange reviews and make your choice. Best regards, SwapSpace team
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CBDC vs Cryptocurrency: Are CBDCs a Threat to Crypto?

CBDC vs Cryptocurrency: Are CBDCs a Threat to Crypto?

June Katz 6 min read
The growth of the cryptocurrency market fuels the interest of society and business in the industry and does not allow states to stay on the sidelines. Dozens of countries are developing their digital currencies , and some of them will be launched as early as 2022. In this article, we will help you understand what digital currencies issued by the state are and how their appearance will affect citizens. What is CBDC The CBDC, or central bank digital currency, is a government-issued and government-backed digital analog of fiat money. CBDCs are created using blockchain technology, just like other cryptocurrencies. However, the digital assets of the Central Bank are not the usual cryptocurrency due to the centralized nature of the issue. The CBDC exchange rate is stable and equal to the exchange rate of the state currency in a ratio of 1:1. This is the principle of a stablecoin — a digital analog of the state currency, whose rate is tied to it and secured by it. For example, USDC or USDT are stablecoins tied to the value of USD . The main difference between those coins and CBDC is that the central bank of the country acts as the CBDC’s issuing center, and not a private company or a community of people. Two Ways of Financial Evolution The emergence of CBDC is designed to change the banking systems of all countries and strengthen the role of central banks. There are two points of view on what these changes will be. Supporters of state regulation of crypto believe that all crypto assets, except for the digital currency of the state, should be banned. This is the way that China's central bank cryptocurrency goes. Operations with CBDC will be transparent and will make it possible to track the history of each transaction and each participant in the chain . Banks will only have to work with companies and citizens: to serve customers and improve their products and services. The burden on financial monitoring will disappear. In a sense, the banks even want it. The second option for CBDC development is recognition and regulation. In this model, digital coins and crypto will be equated to shares, considered a digital value or a payment asset. In this case, the cryptocurrency market will develop systematically, and CBDC will be a full participant in the crypto world. This is Singapore's way. How CBDC Works From the point of view of the approach to the issue, the Bank for International Settlements identifies two basic concepts of digital currencies of central banks (combinations are possible): Account-­based (balanced): according to this concept, the creation of a Central securities exchange takes place by opening personalized accounts in the central bank for all economic agents. The features of this concept are the growth of the regulator's costs for maintaining accounts and the risks of disintermediation (reducing the role) of traditional financial intermediaries. Indeed, for commercial banks, the consequences of the emergence of such a retail CBDC can be revolutionary. For example, if individuals and legal entities have the opportunity to receive and store funds in accounts with the central bank, this may provoke a massive outflow of funds from commercial banks. Some European commercial banks are already raising the question of how, in such a system, the central bank will provide funds to banks for lending to the economy. Value token-based concept assumes a digital cash issue (token) distributed through commercial banks, replacing cash. In this case, the central bank relieves itself of a significant part of the costs and risks associated with checking and servicing customers, providing them with additional services, as well as creating and operating technologies. Tokens in such an ecosystem will effectively represent digital versions of cash. However, commercial banks fear that the launch of such digital money may simplify the entry into the financial sphere for large technology companies, which will increase competition in an already low-margin and competitive market, further reducing the industry's revenues. The form in which the Central Securities Exchange will be launched in a particular country can vary greatly from state to state, depending on the specific tasks assigned to the regulator.  When and Where Will the First CBDC Appear If you do not take into account the Sand Dollar issued by the central bank of the Bahamas, no major country in the world has yet reached the stage of launching its own CBDC. As of November 2021, more than 50 countries of the world were developing CBDC. China has come closest to real use, where the digital yuan has been tested for about a year. South Korea, Canada, France, the United Arab Emirates, South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, and Uruguay are at the pilot testing stage. There is another approach to using crypto as the official currency of the state. This is an example of El Salvador , which in September 2021 recognized bitcoin as a means of payment on a par with the US dollar. Why Do States Need CBDC? One of the main tasks of the Central Bank's digital currencies is the security and transparency of financial transactions. Firstly, the technology underlying CBDC is the most modern means of controlling cash flows. Secondly, central banks strive not to be late for the trend and monitor each other. It is impossible to ignore the development of cryptocurrencies, therefore, to avoid a new round of money flowing into the gray zone, the state needs its digital currency. As they say, if you can't stop them — lead them. For many years, some states have been struggling with the outflow of money to offshore and other jurisdictions that are more favorable from the point of view of taxes and doing business. Previously, this happened with cash, then with non-cash, and now the process has almost entirely switched to cryptocurrencies. There is a threat that people and companies that create stablecoins will control too many processes and resources and will become stronger than some states. Therefore, CBDC for states is also a tool to combat gray financial flows. Are We Moving to Digital Currency? Most likely, a link between CBDC, stablecoins, and crypto will exist and their exchange for cash will be possible for quite a long time. But it is possible that in some countries, cash and digital values, except for their own CBDC, will remain in the gray zone and will be banned. For example, in China. Criticism Writer Dominic Frisby, author of the book "Bitcoin: the Future of Money?", believes that the main disadvantage of CBDC is its programmable capabilities. While fiat currency presupposes certain freedom, digital currency completely excludes it. Governments will also have direct access to users' wallets , which will make it easy to collect taxes or fines — you just need to change a couple of lines of code to do this. The programmable functions of money can be used against certain undesirable persons or as a weapon in an economic war. Integration with social rating systems opens up even wider opportunities for punishments or rewards. Your bank knows almost everything about your spending model, knows where you live, who you work for, and which store you prefer to buy groceries at on Mondays. He is well aware of your financial situation and state of health. Knows what devices you use, and in some cases even has biometric data. All this information opens up great opportunities for analysis, including behavioral analysis. However, information about consumers is of interest not only to the private sector but also to the state. Moreover, central banks are among the first to queue for user data. In the current realities, the introduction of national digital currencies by several countries is a matter of "when", not "if". As with fiat currencies, their strength will be determined by the strength and influence of the central banks behind the issue. A former employee of the NSA and the CIA, Edward Snowden, considers the tool "the newest danger hanging over society."  In a world where CBDCs are a priority means of settlement, including cross-border ones, there will be no room for privacy. After all, a tool that is positioned as a way to increase financial inclusion, in the end, can only tighten the noose around the neck of economic freedom.
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Why Crypto Market Is Down Today: Global Reasons

Why Crypto Market Is Down Today: Global Reasons

June Katz 6 min read
The bitcoin exchange rate has experienced a lot of falls in recent years, but in the end, it has recovered every time and reached new heights. In the last six months, almost all cryptocurrencies have significantly dropped in price. At the end of last month, after a prolonged fall, the first cryptocurrency began to show some positive dynamics, gaining a foothold at $ 32 thousand. Against the background of the rising inflation rate in the United States (almost 9% per year), bitcoin rapidly flew down and reached $ 27 thousand. Then analysts said that with an increase in inflation, the BTC rate would inevitably fall. On Monday, June 13, the bitcoin exchange rate fell to a price of $ 25 thousand, and on June 19, bitcoin collapsed to $18,707 (according to the Binance exchange). The first cryptocurrency pulled other coins along with it. Ethereum has fallen in price and now costs about $ 1.1 thousand, Solana has lost as much as 18.2% in a week, and the exchange rate has dropped to $ 37 (at the time of 06/21/12) Reasons The collapse of the cryptocurrency market will not surprise anyone. Even though the cost of bitcoin and Ethereum has increased dramatically over the past decade, fluctuations in this market have become familiar. Among the reasons for the fall of the cryptocurrency, experts name three — of which Bloomberg considers inflation statistics in the United States to be the main reason: in June, the US Federal Bureau of Statistics reported that the main consumer price index (CPI) increased by 8.6%. Inflation excluding food products increased by 6%. This is a record since 1981, and the statistics turned out to be worse than analysts' expectations, which assumed an increase of 8.3% for the CPI and 5.9% for core inflation. The second reason is the tightening of monetary policy in different countries. First of all, the US Federal Reserve, which in May raised the base rate (according to which the Central Bank issues loans to commercial banks) by 50 basis points, to 0.75 – 1%. This is the strongest increase since 2000. Because of this, people prefer to invest in assets less risky than cryptocurrency. The cryptocurrency market is also affected by the collapse of the TerraUSD ( UST ) stablecoin and related proceedings, which undermined investors' faith in such projects, Bloomberg writes. After it lost its binding to the US dollar, the Luna cryptocurrency used for its release collapsed by 76.4%. Luna Foundation Guard, which is behind TerraUSD, spent $2.9 billion in bitcoins to protect the binding of the token to the dollar — almost all of its reserves. On June 10, Bloomberg, citing sources, reported that the US Securities and Exchange Commission had launched an investigation into Terraform Labs and its algorithmic stablecoin TerraUSD. The regulator will examine whether the platform violated the rules for protecting its investors. Shares of Crypto Companies Also Fell The negative dynamics of the cryptocurrency affected the shares of industry-related companies on the stock market. In particular, the value of Coinbase Global Inc. paper has dropped by 13% since the beginning of the year, Marathon Digital Holdings Inc. — by 24.4%, and Riot Blockchain Inc. — by 21.7%. After spending "hundreds of millions of dollars" on campaigns, sponsorship agreements, and advertising at the Super Bowl, most cryptocurrency firms have reduced marketing costs. This is reported by The Wall Street Journal.  Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao said that crypto winter is the right time to hire new employees and further develop the business. Activity in the sphere has been reduced by Crypto.com and Gemini Trust. The first, after spending $40 million in January, allocated $2.1 million in May for commercials on the eve of the Super Bowl. The second one spent $478,000 last month — eight times less than in November ($3.8 million). Terra Crash The Terra incident is undoubtedly one of the highest-profile events in the history of the crypto industry. So far, no DeFi project has reached such gigantic proportions before its collapse. In March 2021, Terra launched an application called Anchor, which offered profitable deposits, which forced people to buy Terra to then deposit it into their account and get a 20% profit. This attracted a lot of new investors. The dizzying growth of Terra USD (UST) and the popularity of algorithmic stable coins have been a crypto trend for a long time and inspired many developers to create similar projects and reserve crypto funds. However, everything changed in a matter of days: on Wednesday, May 11, Terra USD lost its peg to the US dollar — its price fell below $ 0.23. The LUNA cryptocurrency used to issue the stablecoin has fallen by more than 80%. Some market experts believe that the Terra incident, regardless of the outcome, will have serious consequences for the cryptocurrency market. Blogger Dennis Porter noted that regulators use the collapse of UST as the main argument in favor of total regulation of stablecoins and promotion of CBDC. US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said that the unbinding of Terra USD exposed the need to "create a regulatory framework for stablecoins aimed at minimizing volatility." According to experts, the main reason for the "death" of LUNA was the weakening of the binding of the UST stablecoin to the US dollar. It was TerraUSD (UST), according to the creators of Luna, that was supposed to become a "bridge" between tokens and fiat, but in practice, it turned into a disaster. The path to the rebirth of Terra, if at all possible, will be long and thorny. After all, the main problem lies not in the technical component or the mechanism of binding to fiat, but in restoring user trust. Mutual Influence of Markets Bitcoin is increasingly tied to the world market. And, accordingly, it becomes dependent on its fluctuations. The dynamics of bitcoin this year are almost identical to the fluctuations of the US Nasdaq Composite stock indexes, which are dominated by shares of technology companies. The indicator has dropped by 8.3% since the beginning of the year. Sentiment in traditional markets and cryptocurrency markets can mutually influence their dynamics, analysts at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) say. "A sharp decline in bitcoin prices may increase investors' flight from risk and lead to a reduction in investments in stock markets," experts write. Summary The exchange rate is based not only on promises but also on faith in these promises. The more faith the promisee has, the more stable the course. Recently, more and more analysts are predicting a collapse of Bitcoin almost to zero. According to Guggenheim Partners director Scott Meinerd, bitcoin will fall to $8 thousand, bitcoin critic Peter Schiff admits a rate of $10 thousand, and Galaxy Digital founder Mike Novogratz is confident that the "crypt" will fall further. However, such prophecies in no smaller quantities accompanied every protracted decline in the cryptocurrency market which each time regained its position. Against the background of the fall of cryptocurrencies, the founder of the world's largest crypto exchange Binance Changpeng Zhao has repeatedly said that digital money cannot be evaluated by its falls. He wrote: from a historical point of view, "if you bought bitcoin every time the headlines "bitcoin is dead" appear, you would have succeeded." Zhao backed up this statement with the fact that in 2011 bitcoin fell below $ 20, in 2015 — below $200, and in 2017 — below $ 2000. And in 2022, bitcoin fell below $ 20 thousand. Zhao does not doubt that the leading cryptocurrency will begin to rise in price at auction. But it is worth understanding: when exactly bitcoin or ether will go up, no one can predict now.
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Investing in Crypto: Things to Do in a Crypto Winter

Investing in Crypto: Things to Do in a Crypto Winter

June Katz 14 min read
The first crypto winter was registered in 2014–2015 and lasted 427 days. At that time, the bitcoin exchange rate decreased by 87%, which negatively affected altcoin quotes. The situation was repeated in 2017–2018, when the growth of the bitcoin exchange rate, which began in the fall, was replaced by a sharp decline — from 20 thousand dollars per coin to 8 thousand, or even less. For several months now, experts have been speculating about the possible onset of crypto winter. New assumptions appeared almost every week, and the deadlines were constantly pushed back. It looks like it happened after all. However, the market is cyclical — a period of growth is always followed by a fall and vice versa. Any downturn creates enrichment opportunities, so in this article, we will look at the topic of investing in cryptocurrency. I will point out that we are not giving financial advice — we’re just collecting information about the main investment strategies, the main market participants, and patterns that may be useful. Crypto Investment Strategies There are different approaches to making money on investments in digital assets. We offer you to get acquainted with the three most popular strategies. Hodl Hodl is a popular term in the crypto community , which network users employ to denote the purchase of cryptocurrency for its long–term retention. Working under this scheme implies earning on the growth of the asset rate for a long time. For example, investors who purchased 1 bitcoin 6 years ago, as of the time of writing, were able to increase their investments by 17547%. Scalping The term scalping usually means income from short-term changes in the exchange rate of an asset. Most often, the influence of news on the digital asset market is used to make money using the scheme. Here's how it can work: An investor saw that a couple of minutes ago, Tesla published a report stating that the organization invested a large amount in bitcoin. It can be assumed that the news will positively affect the behavior of the cryptocurrency exchange rate. To make money on the market reaction, the investor buys bitcoin. At the moment when the cryptocurrency exchange rate starts to rise, the investor gets the opportunity to sell the asset at a higher price. The difference in the cost of buying and selling will become his profit. Also, for scalping, you can use technical analysis of the behavior of the asset rate according to the schedule. Averaging The essence of the strategy is to purchase an asset for an extended time on a certain day of the week/month (or with other frequency), regardless of the current position of the cryptocurrency. Market participants who choose this strategy believe that this approach allows them to earn money by averaging risks. Staking This term refers to the intentional retention of assets in the account, to organize a source of passive income. In the staking market, you can find offers with high profitability. One of them is available on the ROY Club platform. Within the walls of the site, up to 40% of new coins can be generated monthly on the UMI cryptocurrency staking. At the same time, you can start earning in a few minutes after registering in the system. All the steps that you need to go through to start earning are accompanied by detailed instructions. If necessary, the user will be able to get advice on working in a dialog box on the site. How to Increase the Efficiency of Investments in Cryptocurrency Many investors have their secrets to improving the efficiency of investments in cryptocurrency. Among them, there are several universal tips. Here are some of them: Investments should be diversified. A distributed portfolio of assets reduces the likelihood of losing all investments due to a sudden drop in the exchange rate of one cryptocurrency. There is no need to buy digital assets with the last money. The market can be unpredictable. It is worth investing only what you can afford to lose. Investments need to be planned. It is worth determining in advance how much you are willing to invest in cryptocurrency. Also, experienced market participants are advised to keep records and record all their operations in the market, so that, if necessary, they have information at hand to analyze the effectiveness of solutions. There are different investment strategies for users who want to make money on the movement of the cryptocurrency exchange rate. For those who are not in a hurry, the hodl scheme is suitable. Users who are ready for increased risk for the sake of instant earnings should pay attention to scalping. Those who want to combine the high profitability of different strategies with the security of investments may be interested in staking. Ways to Analyze Digital Assets Technical Analysis Technical analysis is based on historical market data because history develops in a circle and repeats itself. It includes an overview of past pricing trends. Technical analysis aims to identify recurring patterns and make calculated forecasts for the growth or decline of trends. The main assumption here is that prices are not random and they can be foreseen if you look into the past. Although technical analysis performed correctly can be quite useful and effective, it does not always work. In most cases, the success of technical analytics depends on the person conducting the research. That's why some people prefer fundamental analysis of crypto. Fundamental Analysis Fundamental analysis aims to cover a somewhat broader picture compared to technical analysis. It takes into account both qualitative and quantitative factors that can affect the value to understand whether an asset is overvalued or undervalued compared to its current market price. Since there are no public financial statements that can be verified on the cryptocurrency market, it is more difficult to do this type of analysis, especially for beginners. It is necessary to take into account the volume of transactions, user activity, the unique functions of the cryptocurrency, and even some global economic events that can significantly affect the cryptocurrency market. It is better for a beginner to learn how to use both methods. Understanding cryptocurrency fundamentals will help you make smarter decisions, plan your strategy both in the short and long term, and ultimately become a better investor. Choosing the Best Crypto to Invest In Polygon ( MATIC ) This is a level 2 cryptocurrency for Ethereum decentralized application platforms. Polygon is a promising blockchain ecosystem designed to develop infrastructure and help scale the Ethereum network. The Matic Network and the Polygon token also offered a second-level solution — transferring transactions directly on the Ethereum network to another coin platform. This allowed the Matic network to reach a speed of 7,200 transactions per second (TPS). For comparison, the throughput of Ethereum does not exceed 15 transactions per second. In 2021, the network was rebranded — it became known as Polygon. But in addition to the new name, it also has new functions. Now it is a platform for creating interconnected blockchain networks. In other words, with the help of Polygon, everyone can write their blockchain for any purpose. In the future, Polygon will become the basis of web3 networks. Loopring ( LRC ) A promising cryptocurrency of the decentralized exchange of the same name. To make DEX more scalable and reduce the commission, ZK accumulative packages are used. Loopring gives DEX the ability to choose between storing transactions on-chain or off-chain at any given time. This on-chain data availability (OCDA) combined with ring miners and order rings provides greater scalability of DEX. Loopring offline storage provides 16,400 transactions per second (TPS). Chainlink ( LINK ) It is the digital currency of the decentralized Oracle programming network. The goal of Chainlink is to solve the problem of securely connecting smart contracts to real events. Smart contracts are code fragments that embody a given business logic (for example, when to pay interest on loans). Ripple ( XRP ) This promising cryptocurrency project from San Francisco has become a truly global crypto intermediary (bridge currency) used in cross-border settlements. We are talking about multibillion-dollar transactions mainly between financial institutions, corporations, banks, and payment systems of all countries of the world ("payment corridors"). The second advantage of XRP is the phenomenal speed of financial transactions conducted in the Ripple ecosystem. It is more than 10 thousand operations per second (in particular, in Ripple Net the hash rate is at least 50,000 TPS). Cardano ( ADA ) It is a fully decentralized platform operating on the principle of open source. The distinctive features of Cardano are complete anonymity, the absence of restrictions, and other complicating circumstances such as KYC . It was created in 2017 and became one of the first ecosystems operating on the PoS (Proof-of-stake — "proof of ownership") network protocol. It is actively used in the architectonics of smart contracts and Dapps. The recommended investment horizon is from one year. Stellar ( XLM ) This is a promising cryptocurrency that is used in various systems — from gaming platforms to online stores. It was created in 2014. The main feature is the unification of various ecosystems and blockchains. Stellar is a universal medium of exchange with minimal fees for financial transactions. The cooperation of the platform with IBM and MoneyGram International. Criteria for Selecting Promising Blockchain Projects In 2009, Bitcoin was the only cryptocurrency on the market. Today, the number of digital tokens has exceeded 1000. In such an assortment, it is easy to get lost even for experienced investors, not to mention beginners. When choosing the optimal cryptocurrency for long-term investment or earning on exchange rate fluctuations, we were guided by the following criteria: The fame of the project and its reputation; Capitalization size; The number of exchanges on which the selected cryptocurrency is traded; The number of coins in circulation; The volatility of the exchange rate and the dynamics of quotations; Technical data of the network; Social activity. Cryptocurrencies that are actively discussed on forums and in chat rooms have more prospects for growth. Conclusions It is quite possible to be friends with the risks that the volatility of digital assets carries. By carefully monitoring and analyzing all small price movements, experienced traders have learned to extract income from them by buying and selling coins at the right moment. Such a flair comes with practice, but at the same time, it is backed up by knowledge — studying trading tools, helps not only not to go into negative territory, but also to make a profit. Is crypto a good investment? The cryptocurrency market is volatile and unpredictable, and many experts do not recommend it for long-term investment. But bitcoin has been around for more than 10 years — and this is much longer than the same experts predicted. And although we are seeing periodic ups and downs, in the long term, the crypto market is still expected to grow consistently.
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Hard Forks, Soft Forks: What Do They Even Do (and What’s the Difference)?

Hard Forks, Soft Forks: What Do They Even Do (and What’s the Difference)?

June Katz 4 min read
It is impossible to know in advance what difficulties blockchain users will have to face in the process of its evolution. Sometimes the algorithms and ideas embedded in the development become untenable or ineffective. To continue using them means to lose competitiveness in the market, as well as the value of coins relative to fiat currencies. But to avoid such situations, developers resort to serious code modifications, which are called “a hard fork”. A fork is a procedure for branching the cryptocurrency blockchain, as a result of which two different chains appear. In the future, they continue to develop separately from each other. If developers make drastic changes, such a fork is called a hard fork. In that case, developers do not make minor changes, but radically change the algorithms, rules for issuing coins, methods of its distribution, as well as other parameters. As a result of such actions, a chain of blocks appears, which can no longer interact with the previous blockchain. There are two possible forks: a soft fork and a hard fork. The first is a mild kind of network modernization, old and new blocks remain relevant, a child is allocated from the parent chain. During a hard fork, a rigid modification of the program code occurs, all the old blocks are "forgotten", and the blockchain moves in two parallel lines. With a soft fork, some characteristics of the coin are optimized, and cosmetic improvements are carried out. If some of the nodes do not accept changes, they remain members of the network.  A soft fork does not put everyone before a choice. Small changes in the code allow nodes with outdated software to continue participating in mining . A new coin does not appear. Such an update often goes unnoticed by cryptocurrency holders.  This can be compared to the existence of an academic language and an adverb. Some people have chosen an adverb and communicate in it. However, native speakers of the academic language also understand them. The consensus persists. By activating the hard fork, developers are burying the old network. Users have to choose between two child chains. Famous Hard Forks BCH Fork Bitcoin Cash is a consequence of a hard fork — the coin separated from the original Bitcoin on August 1, 2017. The BCH team, led by Roger Wind, immediately launched an active campaign against the main cryptocurrency, but until that day it this did not bring results and this fork has already become part of bitcoin history. Ethereum Classic Fork Initially, the Decentralized Autonomous Organization ( DAO ) was conceived as a kind of venture fund, in which participants received a share based on their contributions to ETH . The project gained popularity and quickly collected 12.7 million ETH. At that time, the price of the cryptocurrency was about $ 250 million. After some time, the hacker found a vulnerability in the DAO code that allowed him to steal more than 3.6 million Ethereum coins. To prevent the fraudster from withdrawing money, the crypto community voted for the Ethereum hard fork, which returned the funds to most of the victims. London Hard Fork Vitalik Buterin, the creator of the Ethereum cryptocurrency, decided to release another update of the Ethereum 1.0 system to the last phase of ETH 2.0. The London hard fork has become the most controversial. Some users accepted the improvements well, as they allowed to reduce the commission amount. However, the manners were very indignant because of EIP-1559, since the reward for conducting transactions was greatly reduced. Why are Hard Forks Held? For official reasons, the developers point to the need to improve technology and optimize the network, but sometimes banal intra-network disassembly, fraud attempts, and a desire for centralization with passing earnings are behind forking. Often, the reasons for the fork are an increase in the block size (to increase throughput, transactions per second), a decrease in commission (to increase interest in the project), or a "loss of true vision" of the project. How to Fork a Cryptocurrency? To conduct a hard fork, developers inform the community of their intentions (the reason may be either an important update or a split of the network by different teams; in both cases, you need to prepare for this event). The height of the block at which all nodes will vote is publicly announced (for example, 346394). Accordingly, there will be sites that approximately calculate the date and time of the event. Then preliminary tests of the source code proposed for the fork are carried out. According to the results of the voting, the network is bifurcated, in any case. If no one undertakes to support the old branch, and everyone updates the client, then maybe some units of nodes will still mine /validate the old blockchain, but it will be considered abandoned. If opinions are divided, for example, 30% of miners will continue to mine the first chain, and 70% – the second. Then we will get two functioning blockchains.
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Ethereum Gas Fees: How to Make Sense of Them

Ethereum Gas Fees: How to Make Sense of Them

June Katz 6 min read
Just as bank customers pay a commission for the transfer, so do cryptocurrency users. And if in the case of, for example, Bitcoin , the commission amount is transparent and manageable by users, then Ethereum gas fees for the transfer are calculated in a more complicated way. The reason for this difference in the principle of collecting fees is that Bitcoin was created to conduct transactions between users. Ethereum was created not as a payment system, but as a tool for developing decentralized applications. The main function of Ethereum is different — maintaining the operation of smart contracts which is used not only inside the Ethereum network but also in the DeFi ecosystem. The Ethereum blockchain has limited bandwidth and is not adapted for conducting financial transactions, which is why any complex structures overheat it. Any major interference in the work of Ethereum will raise commissions, whether it is the work of smart contracts or the purchase of assets.  The growth in the number of users of the DeFi market has increased the complexity of the Ethereum system, which has led to an increase in commissions within the network and made them less predictable. How do transactions work on the Ethereum network? When sending a transaction in the Ethereum blockchain, a fee is charged in the form of "Gas", but what happens if you specify an insufficient amount? There are three scenarios for working with Gas. First: there was more gas than it took for the transfer. Then, all unspent gas will return to the sender at the rate at the time of dispatch. Second: there was exactly as much gas as needed. Then the payment will go through without any problems, nothing will be returned to the account. Third: there was not enough gas. Then the transaction is considered unconfirmed and canceled. Immediately after the cancellation, the Ethereum Blockchain will roll itself back to the state before sending, and the spent gas is not returned. Note that the blockchain cancels only changes made by an unconfirmed transaction. What is Ethereum Gas? Gas is a unit of measurement of computing work performed by miners to conduct transactions or support smart contracts of the Ethereum network. Gases were also introduced to stimulate miners: in the case of blockchain networks, the security of the network is directly proportional to its hash rate, that is, the number of miners. This system allows them to receive a commission commensurate with their resource costs, because the more complex the transaction, the more gas is required to complete it. The term gas can mean two things: gas limit and gas price.  Gas price The price of gas can be set by two authorities, depending on who you are dealing with. The first is the Ethereum blockchain itself, which sets the cost of fuel depending on its load. The higher the load, the higher the commission. The second is a smart contract created by a participant of the blockchain that you are paying for. When creating a smart contract, for example, to raise funds for an ICO or IPO, the contract creator sets the cost of commissions. The Gas price is measured in the minimum part of the Ethereum network – Wei. However, in almost all wallets , this parameter is shown in Gwei. Below is the fragmentation of ETH : 1 ETH = 1 000 finnely = 1 000 000 szabo = 1 000 000 000 gwei = 1 000 000 000 000 000 000 wei The three main units of measurement WEI, GWEI, Szabo and Finnely are named after famous people who influenced the formation and development of cryptocurrencies. WEI is dust from ETH, in reality, it is practically not used. The main area of use of WEI is writing code. Execution of one line of code in the Ethereum blockchain costs 1 WEI, it can be a smart contract code or any other operation. GWEI is used to pay the commission. Finney is something like a pocket change , equal to 0.001 Ether, intended for small transfers. Ether, aka ETH, is used for everything else. Gas limit The minimum amount for the transaction is 21 thousand units. It is recommended to set a higher Gas limit value to be sure that the transaction is completed successfully. If the amount of Gas is not enough for a successful outcome, the transaction will be returned with the status "unsuccessful". Regardless of what the result was, Gas is paid to the miner, since they have already spent resources on processing this operation. Usually, developers fix the value that is written off for the successful implementation of the smart contract. So, if you need to make a transaction, and you have set a Gas limit of 500 thousand Gas, and only 30 thousand Gas is needed to make a transaction, then only 30 thousand Gas will be written off from you. But if, for example, 500 001 Gas is needed to conduct a transaction, then the program will not give a result, and this amount will be spent. How to avoid high ETH gas fees and calculate the right number of Gwei to pay the commission correctly? Use https://ethgasstation.info — this service specifies Ethereum gas price calculation giving you recommended commission values for the transfer so the transaction will pass.  There is also an alternative from Etherchain — https://www.etherchain.org/tools/gasPriceOracle You can find an Ethereum gas tracker at https://ethstats.net When are Ethereum Gas Fees Lowest? There are also general patterns that you can focus on to know what is the best time for low eth gas fees. Even though Ethereum is a network available around the world 24/7 and 365 days a year, since the launch of EIP—1559 in August 2021, the base fees have generally been higher during business hours in the United States. Interestingly, the morning period from midnight to 8 a.m. Eastern time has a lower base commission compared to working hours in the United States (from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). In addition, gas is also cheaper on weekends. The cost of gas is also affected by the intensity of use of Tether , USDC , and NFT , which also increases during working hours in the United States. Regardless of the reason, all of this can provide an interesting opportunity for time-independent transaction planning. How will the launch of the new Ethereum 2.0 network reduce the commission? Now Ethereum is a blockchain based on PoW (Proof-of-work) or the computing power of miners. When switching to PoS (Proof-of-stake), the computational load on the network is expected to decrease. For example, in the Ethereum PoS sidechain, validators will take the role of miners mining cryptocurrency. To become a validator, you will need to freeze 32 ETH on the account. The Ethereum 2.0 system should increase the network bandwidth and should allow for more transactions per second. The point is controversial: if the number and speed of transactions increase, then the cost of Gas may also rise. In any case, to know for sure, you should wait for the transition of the Ether from PoW to PoS.
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Crypto Communities and Where to Find Them: Looking for Crypto Trading Tips, Discussions, and Fights

Crypto Communities and Where to Find Them: Looking for Crypto Trading Tips, Discussions, and Fights

June Katz 9 min read
There are many crypto communities on the Internet where people communicate on the topic of cryptocurrencies. There are so many that it is sometimes difficult to find really useful sites. Therefore, we have made a selection of crypto communities where crypto-enthusiasts can get new knowledge, tell about their experience and find like-minded people. Note that nothing in this article should be interpreted as trading advice. Neither do we necessarily agree with the opinions of the personalities and members of the communities mentioned below: we just think that discussions make the crypto world more vibrant and interesting. Reddit Cryptocurrency Boards The Reddit platform is built on discussion, allowing subreddit participants to benefit from the knowledge of more experienced participants. In addition, Reddit's boost and downgrade feature can help you distinguish useful information from harmful. Subreddits are small communities dedicated to a specific topic in the Reddit ecosystem. This has made Reddit a great tool for the fast-growing diverse crypto industry, where topics covering all aspects of cryptocurrency are discussed. Here is our selection of the 10 most popular subreddits for crypto enthusiasts in 2022. Crypto News & Discussion r/CryptoCurrency If you are looking for a reddit board with crypto news, the chances are good that you will find it in the Cryptocurrency News & Discussion community . With over 4.9 million members, it is the single largest crypto reddit. This subreddit is home to thousands of active users who are constantly sharing their opinions, analysis, and thoughts on a wide range of coins, tokens , and blockchain developments. Bitcoin for Beginners r/bitcoinbeginners This bitcoin reddit is one of the best places for beginners who are not familiar with Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general yet. There are posts dedicated to teaching newcomers how crypto and blockchain technologies work, their future use, and the best ways to trade. The guides described in this subreddit are not limited to bitcoin and include the most popular altcoins . CryptoMarkets r/CryptoMarkets This is one of the best subreddits dedicated to crypto trading and market analysis. The participants also offer excellent information about cryptocurrency exchanges and various applications that will help you better analyze the market. Crypto General r/Crypto_General Although the name implies that this subreddit discusses general cryptocurrency topics, the emphasis is on high-quality, in-depth reviews on topics in various crypto areas. Altcoin r/Altcoin If you want to learn about any cryptocurrency other than bitcoin, then the Altcoin subreddit is for you. The discussions are based on news, trends, market indicators, and forecasts regarding cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum , Cardano , and BNB , as well as recently launched altcoins. DeFi r/DeFi The revolutionization of traditional financial services has made decentralized finance one of the most discussed crypto topics. This crypto subreddit is dedicated to informing you about all the developments in the DeFi ecosystem and how to use DeFi protocols. ICOCrypto r/icocrypto Discussion of new crypto projects that are about to be launched through initial coin offerings (ICO), mass sales, and token sales. Cryptocurrency Technology Focused Discussions r/CryptoTechnology This subreddit with more than 331 thousand participants is dedicated to serious technical discussions discussions about cryptocurrency and the underlying blockchain technology. Unlike most other similar subreddits, there are no discussions of cryptocurrency prices, market indicators, advertising content, or memes . Crypto Moonshots r/CryptoMoonShots If you want to find a crypto project that is about to make a quantum leap in its market capitalization, then you should visit this subreddit. Discussions are centered around the analysis of cryptocurrencies with low market capitalization and growth potential. It became a fan favorite, garnering more than 1.6 million subscribers. Bitcoin r/Bitcoin One of the oldest crypto-subreddits dedicated to the pioneer cryptocurrency closes the list. Since 2010, this community has focused on everything related to Bitcoin, from news to opinions, trading guides, and memes. Telegram Crypto-groups Subscribing to telegram channels is an easy way to keep up to date with the news, be the first to learn about all events, and receive trading signals and forecasts for digital assets on time. Unfortunately, not all Internet resources are equally effective, and the topic of cryptocurrency has always attracted scammers due to a large number of new, inexperienced users. Beware of "signals" and channels that seek to make money on their subscribers, promising profit. No one will give you the " secret of success" because there is none. Below is a selection of telegram channels about cryptocurrency. "Flagship Funds | Investments" Flagship Funds | Investments The author's channel of a Swiss investment fund specializing in decentralized finance and NFT . The channel tells in detail about the latest trends in the cryptocurrency market, NFT, DeFi, and initial placements (IDO/IFO). The channel's authors are recognized experts with many years of experience in the largest investment banks and funds. All information is presented in a structured form and is easy to understand. On the channel, you can get acquainted with reviews of transactions, analytics of initial placements, and investment ideas. “Altcoin & Bitcoin Trading” Altcoin & Bitcoin Trading Telegram channel about cryptocurrencies, specializing in technical analysis of the market, current news of the blockchain industry, as well as investment signals. “Rocket Wallet Signals” Rocket Wallet Signals Telegram channel about trading. Its authors publish cryptocurrency signals daily and assess the current market situation. There is a lot of information that appears faster than in the media. Rocket Wallet Signals can automatically execute cryptocurrency signals via a trading bot. The project will be useful for both novice traders and professionals. The authors of the channel give important explanations of the signals and regularly share the results of their work. Discord Cryptohub Cryptohub Discord A great channel for those who have just started their journey in the world of cryptocurrency. Here beginners can get basic knowledge and direction for further development. r/CryptoCurrency r/CryptoCurrency Discord This discord is the channel of the largest cryptocurrency subreddit, where there are subchannels about almost everything: trading, DeFi, NFT, farming, altcoins, mining , and whale transactions! Larva Labs Larva Labs Discord Larva Labs is the largest Discord NFT server created for discussing where you can buy and sell NFTs and get updates on what is happening in the crypto world around them. Spacestation Spacestation Discord Although the server was created as a community in which Ethereum miners communicated, now some subchannels cover almost all the main topics related to cryptocurrency. Twitter Personalities Vitalik Buterin (@VitalikButerin). The creator of the Ethereum blockchain, on which the entire sphere of DeFi and NFT sits tightly. An impressive (albeit eccentric) leader of the Ethereum community and an authority on the crypt. Barry Silbert (@BarrySilbert). CEO of Digital Currency Group and Grayscale, the largest regulated crypto company that creates "traditional" financial instruments based on crypto. Gavin Wood (@gavofyork). One of the main startupers in the crypt. Participated in the founding of Ethereum, Kusama Network, Parity Company, and the Web3 Foundation. He also became the founder of Polkadot and now writes mainly about it and the direction of Web3. Mike Winkelmann (@beeple). One of the most famous NFT artists of our time hails from the USA, known to many under the pseudonym Beeple. Paves the way for art in the fields of VR and AR , which in the future will have a great impact on the development of metaverses. Rekt Capital (@rektcapital). A trader who supports his forecasts about price trends with high-quality charts. Andreas Antonopoulos (@aantonop). Economist and author of bestsellers about crypto, bitcoin, and the global economy: "Mastering Bitcoin", “Mastering Ethereum" and “The Internet of Money". Brian Armstrong (@brian_armstrong). Founder and CEO of Coinbase. After it went public in the US in 2021, Coinbase became the most expensive crypto company in the world. Coinbase is the most popular crypto trading platform in the United States, and the company also operates in dozens of other countries. Cryptomedia Bloomberg Crypto (@crypto), CoinDesk (@CoinDesk), The Block (@TheBlock__), Cointelegraph (@Cointelegraph), Decrypt (@decryptmedia), Bitcoin Magazine (@BitcoinMagazine). On-chain analytics platforms Messari (@MessariCrypto), Glassnode (@glassnode), Santiment (@santimentfeed), CryptoQuant (@cryptoquant_com), CoinMarketCap (@CoinMarketCap), CoinGecko (@coingecko), Dapp Radar (@DappRadar), DeFi Pulse (@defipulse), Whale Alert (@whale_alert). Market news and analytics Income Sharks (@IncomeSharks), Bankless (@BanklessHQ), Bitcoin News (@BTCTN), Altcoin Daily (@AltcoinDailyio), Real Vision (@RealVision), Bitcoin Archive (@BTC_Archive), Documenting Bitcoin (@DocumentingBTC). Investment funds and investments Paradigm (@paradigm), Pantera Capital (@PanteraCapital), Blockworks (@Blockworks_).
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What’s Up with the Ethereum Upgrade? The State of the Network in 2022

What’s Up with the Ethereum Upgrade? The State of the Network in 2022

June Katz 5 min read
The entire crypto community is waiting for the release of the second version of Vitalik Buterin's cryptocurrency network. It will allow you to receive passive income for altcoin storage, increase the transaction speed by almost 70 times and forget about mining . It has long been known that Ethereum developers are planning to switch to Proof-of-Stake. This will mean the termination of the use of the Proof-of-Work (PoW) algorithm, — ETH mining by solving complex mathematical problems (mining). Now the key value will be played by the number of tokens that are stored on the user's account. The transition to Ethereum 2.0 is announced for 2022, the release date has been pushed back.  In a conversation with a blogger Compass Mining, key developers of Ethereum 2.0 Ben Edgington, and Tim Beiko said that everything is almost ready, but the 1st quarter of the year is already over, and the transition is not completed yet. Despite all its achievements, the low scalability and high cost of financial transactions remain the "Achilles heel" of the Ethereum network. There is a real danger of "competition for transactional space and the use of blockchain has already become expensive, but soon the cost of services may increase by another five times.  At the moment, the altcoin blockchain is capable of conducting up to 15 transactions per second. This indicator is more than two times higher than that of bitcoin . However, for a large number of users, this speed is not enough. For example, the Visa payment system can carry out up to 24 thousand transactions per second. The development of Optimistic Rollup will help solve the scalability problem. According to Vitalik Buterin, the creator of Ethereum, its implementation will occur after the altcoin network is updated. This will increase its throughput to 1000 transactions per second. As a solution, Buterin sees a departure from the verification model of each device in the network of each transaction and switches to a random verification model. Yes, this will slightly reduce security, but it will significantly reduce costs (up to 100 times from each transaction). Another solution to the scalability problem will be the introduction of sharding. Now the Ethereum network is a common database. After the update, the blockchain will be divided into autonomous, interacting shard chains, each of which will process its transactions and smart contracts . Vitalik Buterin in an interview with The Toronto Star stated that what he cares about is taking blockchain technology behind bitcoin that makes decentralized cryptocurrency possible and making it more general-purpose so that other things can be decentralized in the same way. Several big steps have already been taken to solve the problems facing the ecosystem. In the spring of 2021, The Berlin hard fork was launched. It was a network upgrade that changes the underlying Ethereum protocol, created new rules to improve the system, regulates gas fees, and adds new transaction types. Now it's the turn to launch the London hard fork which will go live on block 12 965 000 (On 15 April it’s 12,624,311).  London hard fork should solve the problem of mining centralization. The mining process in the Ethereum blockchain is gradually ceasing to be fair. Miners with a reserve of funds buy special integrated circuits designed for ETH mining. This gives them the ability to mine blocks faster than users with GPUs. As a result, ordinary miners with GPU began to underwork, and some of them switched to mining other assets. Ether developers are aware of the fact of the problem with the complexity of mining and plan to replace the consensus mechanism. Approximately in the 3rd quarter of 2022, the Ethereum blockchain will switch to the Proof-of-Stake system. When switching to the Proof-of-Work algorithm, the network operation will be provided by remote servers running the master node software. It can be a home computer or a laptop with a certain amount of funds. To participate in Ethereum stacking, you need to keep at least 32 ETH in your wallet . In June 2020, the number of addresses with more than 32 ETH was close to 120,000. In the first 5 months of this year, this value increased by 13%. According to the roadmap of the project, the annual return on stacking will vary from 1.81% to 18.1%. At the moment, the exact values are unknown. The profitability will depend on the number of participants. The more of them there are, the lower the amount of remuneration will be.  Together, the growing shortage of coins, increased demand, as well as the influx of capital from large investors can have a serious impact on the price and its growth, respectively. At the moment, the value of ETH has already exceeded $ 3,000. Sometime after the activation of the hard fork in London, the price may rise even more. The potential goal of ETH is to update the historical maximum, which is at around $ 4380. Thus, only if the record value is updated, investors can potentially make a profit of almost 50%. Unlike investors in the United States, who are still waiting for certainty in the regulation of the crypto market, investors in the CIS can already legally and safely invest in cryptocurrencies. You can exchange and buy cryptocurrencies on the SwapSpace crypto exchange .
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The Drawbacks of Centralized Crypto Exchanges: Binance Russia Case

The Drawbacks of Centralized Crypto Exchanges: Binance Russia Case

June Katz 4 min read
On April 21, Binance released an official statement according to which it will restrict access to its services for users who live in Russia and have assets worth more than $10 thousand. Such clients will no longer be able to deposit additional funds to their accounts or trade on the exchange. They will only be able to withdraw funds. In March, Binance denied that it was preparing to freeze the accounts of Russians, as this contradicts the concept of the cryptocurrency industry. The company said it was not going to impose restrictions on Russian bidders with the words: "Cryptocurrencies are designed to provide greater financial freedom to people all over the world. A decision to unilaterally ban consumers from accessing their cryptocurrencies would be contrary to what this industry exists for". It is worth saying that in the current situation, cryptocurrency is the only financial instrument that allows Russians to try to protect their savings from inflation. A few weeks ago, the Central Bank of the Russian Federation persistently convinced Russians that the cryptocurrency market is extremely risky for private investors and that the only way to save and increase their savings is through the Russian stock market and the national currency. Such news reminds us that one of the biggest problems of cryptocurrencies at the moment is the centralization of services. Blockchain processing requires a lot of computing resources and time. Therefore, ordinary users who just want to transfer a few coins prefer to use centralized services for this. Most Bitcoin users trust blockchain.info, Ethereum users trust myetherwallet, etc. If these popular wallets are compromised, the funds of a huge number of users will be stolen .. Trust in centralized services leads to the appearance of a single point of failure in cryptocurrencies, allows censorship , and endangers user coins. As another example, we can cite the protests of truckers in Canada, when the court froze the protesters' funds in cryptocurrency for millions of dollars. These events have shown us that the state has leverage to carry out censorship in the sphere of cryptocurrencies, which seemed to many before, was beyond their control. Unfortunately, any centralized financial institution can block access of their clients and users to funds: payment systems, banks, classic or crypto exchanges. The problem with crypto exchanges is that they operate based on issued licenses, they have services that are responsive to the regulator and the competent authorities of the countries that issued the license, up to criminal liability. Therefore, at the request of the regulator, a centralized exchange must restrict access or seize its client's funds. Centralization as solution Centralization is increasingly seen as a solution to problems. A large network is slowly synchronized, so many cryptocurrencies offer to use a limited number of trusted "master nodes", "witnesses", etc. to "solve the problem" of too many nodes in the network. The number of these trusted nodes may be different, but by using this method to solve scalability problems, developers are also destroying the decentralized nature of the blockchain, since the result of this will be the formation of a cryptocurrency with one functioning node that processes transactions very efficiently, without delays, confirmations, and forks, but in this case, the blockchain becomes unnecessary. Today, most users do not understand the technical details, so such centralized blockchains will continue to attract them, because centralized services will always be easier to develop and more convenient for the user. Decentralized Exchanges : an Alternative Decentralized exchanges (English Decentralized Exchanges, or DEX) are an alternative to CEX. Here you don't have to trust your assets to someone else. Unlike traditional CEX, transactions and trades on such platforms are automated using smart contracts and decentralized applications, and DEX acts only as a platform that only connects the buyer with the seller who wants to sell their tokens . DEX cannot be closed by any government and regulators, since no organization is responsible for them. But such decentralization has its price. This is a low trading volume, low liquidity, lower transaction speed, and a poor UI, as a result of which it is more difficult to work with such exchanges. Also, the differences between decentralized and centralized exchanges include the fact that some DEX bet on experienced users. For example, they do not have support services, and they also do not use fiat gateways, unlike CEX. Decentralized exchanges are aimed at more experienced users who work only with their wallets and want to fully control their digital assets. At the same time, they sacrifice other benefits provided by centralized exchanges. This is an easier user experience, a large trading volume, and higher liquidity. Examples of DEX’es are Binance DEX, Uniswap , and SwapSpace . Summary We have already written that although governments can't ban blockchain use they can marginalize it and slow down its growth until the necessary tools for control will appear.  If a few years ago the marginalization of cryptocurrencies was facilitated by its widespread use on the black market and opacity , now users' fears of simply losing access to funds due to belonging to any social group or nationality have been added to this. Of course, the listed risks do not outweigh the convenience of CEX for everyone, but it is important to understand that the original essence of cryptocurrency was that an ordinary user could be outside countries, governments, and banks, so attempts to take it away are very alarming.
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Mining Cryptocurrency on a Phone: How Does It Work?

Mining Cryptocurrency on a Phone: How Does It Work?

June Katz 6 min read
Cryptocurrency is distinguished from fiat money by the absence of a single digital bank and control over transactions and payments. It is stored and maintained in a decentralized manner, that is, on the wallets of millions of users around the world. If the bank is responsible for accounting for ordinary money, then in the case of, for example, Bitcoin , the blockchain is responsible for this, which contains records of all transactions ever made. Miners are rewarded for supporting the network, that is, combining transactions into blocks and calculating the key (hash) for the block. That is, people generate keys and try them until one fits. If earlier it could be done using a regular home PC , now it requires much more power. Mining Bitcoins using the SHA -256 algorithm requires so much performance from the equipment that even the most powerful processors are far from the past. And with the advent of ASIC chips, video cards are slowly starting to lose ground. Nowadays people practically do not let mobile gadgets out of their hands, so despite the growing difficulty of obtaining cryptocurrencies, developers have come up with how to mine crypto on phones. In this regard, the question arises, is it really possible to mine cryptocurrency on a smartphone? In principle, this is possible, although we can only talk about coins that differ significantly from "digital gold" in terms of the characteristics of their production. First of all, we are talking about mining on Android-based CryptoNight algorithm ( derived from CryptoNote). These include Monero ( XMR ), Bytecoin (BCN), and Digital Note ( XDN ). You can also try mining currencies such as Dash ( DASH ), Aeon (AEON), QuazarCoin (QCN), Fantom ( FTM ), MonetaVerde (MCN), or new little-known coins on your Android phone after they are added to applications. Popular apps for mobile crypto mining MinerGate This miner is a specialized pool that gives a chance to earn some crypto on a PC, tablet or mobile phone. The pool program distributes tasks between participants to combine their computing capabilities into a single network. Mining can be done via Wi-Fi or a mobile network. In the settings, you should set that mining can only be done via Wi-Fi or only when the phone is recharging. It is also possible to set the number of cores used for mining and prohibit operation if the battery charge is low. The device does not heat much during the extraction process. The calculation speed is low. It depends on the power of the smartphone and can vary quite widely, for example, on one (budget) gadget you can get 9 H/s, and on another (more expensive) — 17 H/s. But in any case, this is 10 – 20 times less than the average hand of a personal computer. You can earn about 10 – 12 BCN per day — 0.0015 USD . ARM Mineral This is one of the best mining apps for Android/IOS in 2022. Not bolted to a specific pool, very simple interface. In the free version, the user is shown a video advertisement of a binary options resource in full-screen format, it is impossible to disable it. The ad-free version is paid. The mining speed is 2.8 kH/s on 4 cores, 3.2 kH/s on 8 cores. The SHA256 and Scrypt algorithms do not run, the earnings for the rest are too small. At the same time, there is noticeable heating and unstable operation of the device under load. Is it worth it? Before mining on an iPhone or Android, you should ask yourself how appropriate it is to do this. Calculating the hashes of cryptocurrency blocks requires a serious and long-term load on the device, for which smartphones are not designed at all. The fact is that the phones do not have an active cooling system, and passive cooling does not provide a normal heat sink. This leads to rapid wear of the device. It should be noted that all the tests did not take into account the cost of used electrical energy and the wear and tear of equipment. If we take into account these factors, the income from mobile mining will not be comparable with the costs.
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What Are Stablecoins — And How You Could Use Them

What Are Stablecoins — And How You Could Use Them

June Katz 6 min read
The cryptocurrency market is growing rapidly. The turnover on the exchanges is trillions of dollars. The value of individual digital assets exceeds the value of large companies. Investor interest is increasing. However, the risks remain. One tool for reducing risks is the so-called stablecoins. Their main strength is the same as that of recognized fiat currencies, — relative stability. It is possible to make predictable calculations using them. The most popular stablecoins are: USD Tether ( USDT ) Binance BUSD (BUSD) True USD ( TUSD ) Paxos Standard ( PAX ) USD Coin ( USDC ) Now there are several types of stablecoins, the most common of which group them by the type of the underlying asset, i.e. the asset to which the cryptocurrency is linked: to fiat money, for example, USDT (Tether, pegged to the dollar) and bitCNY (to the yuan); to goods traded on the stock exchange, for example, precious metals and gas or it could be even crypto-backed stablecoins. What are stablecoins used for? Stablecoins are most often used to fix profits, and to preserve the balance from drawdowns during jumps in the value of the main trading cryptocurrency. Large investors sometimes transfer their profits "overnight" to a stablecoin to continue trading without losses in the morning. In addition to the protective function, this type of digital currency is used for: Everyday transactions Optimized recurrent payments and transfers from card to card Cheap international transfers, for example, for foreign workers Guarding against hyperinflation of the local currency Increasing the speed and quality of cryptocurrency exchanges to reduce dependence on bitcoin . On some exchanges, it is already faster and cheaper to trade through a stablecoin. And it takes time and additional checks to enter fiat money into the system. Also, this type of digital asset allows you to diversify risks: while the price of bitcoin is changing a lot, you can store funds practically in euros or dollars. The presence of stablecoins ensures the trust and acceptance of cryptocurrencies in general. Institutional investors use stablecoins, increasing the turnover of the industry as a whole, and increasing profitability for smaller investors. Plus, the more trust in cryptocurrencies, the easier it is to use them in the real world when buying goods /services. So, which stablecoin will suit you the most depends primarily on your goals. Often people who need to transfer money from one state to another in a quick transit (in a day or two), use Tether (USDT) because it has the best liquidity. The main thing here is not to keep large amounts of money in it for a longer time. For the longer-term storage of a backup crypto cushion for a rainy day, it might be a good choice to collect a diversified portfolio from USDC, BUSD, and DAI . Terra USD ( UST ) is not a reliable stablecoin for storage. It makes sense to go to it only if you are going to make money on staking. Challenges and risks of stablecoins Despite all the advantages, stablecoins have several risks to be reckoned with. Firstly, not all of them are stable enough, despite the name – new projects appear, but do not always survive. It is reasonable to use well-established stablecoins and gradually diversify into others. Secondly, by linking to other assets, they receive the following risks — the collapse of guaranteeing currency (if linked to it) and legal restrictions: linking to fiat currencies increases not only trust but also the number of requirements for mandatory execution. For example, Facebook decided to launch its cryptocurrency, which is based on different fiat currencies – and got mired in bureaucratic problems. Thirdly, the owner of the stablecoin in most cases is one company with centralized management. In such cases maintaining trust and stability requires constant monitoring, audits, and inspections , as concentrating power in the hands of just a few people makes it easy to abuse . Even the popular Tether at some point (according to rumors) began to offer a larger volume of cryptocurrency than there were real assets. An investigation by the US Department of Justice has begun. To sum up , stablecoins allow payments to be made quickly and at a low cost, which requires effective financial, organizational, and technical conditions. However, in the absence of a proper regulatory system, various risks may appear, which may cause undesirable consequences.
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