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The Bitcoin Cash Network Continues to Grow With an Ambitious Roadmap


Bitcoin Cash Network Continues to Grow With an Ambitious Roadmap


It’s been over forty-eight days since the hard fork, and the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) network is alive and well.

Also Read: Bitcoin Exchange BTCC to Halt Trading as Regulatory Storm Brews in China

Five Different Development Teams Are Working With the Bitcoin Cash Project

Bitcoin Cash Network Continues to Grow With an Ambitious RoadmapAs the blockchain’s days continue, BCH developers have been revealing the upcoming plans to improve the cryptocurrency’s protocol. Discussions revolving around bitcoin cash development shows the protocol’s programmers have a very ambitious roadmap for the digital currency’s future. This includes a deep focus on on-chain scaling, and not fearing hard forks down the road in order to upgrade the BCH software. Currently, there are five development teams who say they are working with the BCH project, which include developers from Bitcoin ABC, Unlimited, Nchain, XT, and Classic.

Bitcoin Cash Developers Don’t Fear Hard Forks

At the moment there are lots of ideas being tossed around like a malleability fix without the  additions Segregated Witness adds, and a different difficulty adjustment algorithm. To push these new ideas forward, some BCH developers are not afraid to hard fork the network occasionally.   

Bitcoin Cash Network Continues to Grow With an Ambitious Roadmap
“If we want to scale big we’ll have to do a hard fork from time to time,” explains developer Amaury Séchet

“If we want to scale big we’ll have to do a hard fork from time to time,” explains Bitcoin ABC developer Amaury Séchet recent developers mailing list post. “Longer term, we may want to use extension point to add new features, but we are not there yet — more on extension points later on.”

Séchet and many other developers have been discussing quite a few different concepts regarding the future of Bitcoin Cash. The lead Bitcoin ABC developer Séchet mentions a new Merkle tree format and improving light client security with UTXO commitments. Other developers would also like to work on non-consensus changes to improve and make the BCH network more reliable. Development discussions have also revolved around how a hard fork should be coordinated and combining multiple changes in a consensus change.

Bitmain’s Jihan Wu: ‘Satoshi Made it Clear That Blocks Would Have to Grow’

Last week the CEO of Bitmain Technologies, Jihan Wu, was interviewed by the Chinese exchange Huobi and discussed the Bitcoin Cash network in great detail. Mr. Wu explains that he believes Satoshi made it clear that blocks would have to grow and hard forks were important to Bitcoin’s upgrade process.

“This was already apparent in Satoshi’s white paper, emails, and his discussions on bitcoin forums where he expressed similar views,” explains Mr. Wu’s translated interview.           

Before Blockstream and their allies strangled opinions on certain important channels and media platforms, the entire bitcoin community was largely aligned with the plan towards Bitcoin’s block size upgrade.         

‘These Events Have Never Occurred Before in Bitcoin’s History’

Bitcoin Cash Network Continues to Grow With an Ambitious Roadmap
Bitmain founder Jihan Wu finds the Bitcoin Cash network very interesting.

Mr. Wu says what left the deepest impression on him regarding the BCH network was how it found its initial price valuation during the first two weeks. “The price fluctuated violently and would triple in a few days then fall, because everyone was in the process of getting to know and accept it — This left the deepest impression on me.” The Bitmain founder also thinks the BCH difficulty adjustment mechanism is intriguing.

“These events are fascinating and have never occurred before in Bitcoin’s history,” Mr. Wu tells Huobi. “When we first saw this phenomenon with our own eyes we felt it was really fascinating.”

It has many implications for the switching over of computing power and how the value of assets are determined, and is worth researching.

It’s been over 8000 blocks since the hard fork and the BCH chain is 1200 blocks ahead of the legacy chain. It is currently 13.5 percent more profitable to mine BTC, but profit parity has been close and consistent for the past two weeks. At the moment, there are five known mining pools processing BCH blocks, and allegedly three unknown pools mining roughly 63 percent of the last 144 blocks. So far the BCH network has continued to grow stronger as the days continue with more supporters and infrastructure built around the protocol.

What do you think about the current state of the Bitcoin Cash network? Let us know in the comments below.

Images via Shutterstock, Bitcoin Cash, Twitter, and Pixabay. 

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Marine matters: How blockchain technology is stirring the waters for the shipping trade


The world’s marine industry giants have long been regarded as conservative, set in their ways and resistant to change. Yet, if recent blockchain-related developments are anything to go by, it seems nothing could be further from the truth.

In many parts of the world, shipping is seen as an industry on the decline. However, some say, blockchain pilot schemes are now helping breathe new life into the marine trade.

But where exactly does blockchain come into the shipping equation?

Well, for a start, it could help resolve eliminate document fraud cases and potentially reduce the need for costly dispute arbitration. In an industry plagued by fake agents, fake documents and even fake goods, blockchain’s immutable ledger system has the potential to kick fraud into touch for good.

In fact, when you think about it, cargo tracking is actually a fairly intuitive use for the blockchain. Maersk, the world’s biggest container ship and supply vessel operator, claimed back in 2014 that intercontinental shipments often require “mountains” of paperwork, with “processes involving nearly 30 people and organizations,” and comprising “up to 200 different interactions.” With blockchain technology, however, Maersk says it will be able to ditch paper documentation altogether and allow all parties to participate in an immutable digital ledger system instead.

Indeed, developments like these could, in theory, allow every party involved in the process to check on the status of a shipment at any point in the process – representing a very serious upgrade in both reliability and efficiency.

All hands on deck

Last year, British cargo management specialists Marine Transport International claimed to have developed the world’s “first public blockchain solution in the global shipping industry,” in association with a London-based data science company.

Maersk has recently begun tracking freight using the technology, and its rivals are also banking on blockchain.

Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM), one of South Korea’s biggest shipping powerhouses, has claimed its maiden blockchain voyage was a success. The company earlier this month sent a refrigerated container shipment from the Korean port of Busan to Qingdao, on the east coast of China. HMM says it was so pleased with its handiwork that it now plans a second blockchain-powered shipment in October, with a view to expanding its usage of the technology on routes to India and Thailand.

Indeed, HMM earlier this year joined forces with Samsung affiliate Samsung SDS and the South Korean government in a shipping logistics consortium that aims to make extensive use of blockchain technology. The government is keen to introduce a new-found efficiency into marine enterprises following a series of bailouts. And as marine enterprises make up for some 33 percent of South Korea’s export economy, ministers hope that a blockchain-powered boost will help breathe new life into the industry.

In nearby Japan, several of the country’s biggest shippers – including Nippon Yushen (one of the oldest shipping companies in the world) – have recently formed their own 14-company consortium. Its members claim they are seeking to develop a Japanese trade data sharing platform

Port of call

Government bodies are now showing signs of an eagerness to board the blockchain boat. The Danish Maritime Authority’s new blockchain-powered pilot scheme could soon revolutionize the way ship owners register their vessels with Denmark’s marine authorities, potentially digitizing the entire process. The country’s industry minister says the blockchain initiative has the potential to keep costs down and boost trust in the shipping industry.

And several port authorities, particularly in Northern Europe, have begun working on their own blockchain-powered management platforms. These include the Port of Rotterdam, the biggest shipping port in Europe. Rotterdam’s venture was launched in association with the Netherlands’ Delft University of Technology and, its project manager claims, “This involves more than just talking about possibilities – we are really going to apply the technology.”

The Port of Antwerp, in neighboring Belgium, is following suit. The port (Europe’s second largest after Rotterdam) is aware that “fifty percent of the costs of cargo transport” is taken up by paperwork, and is now trialing a blockchain platform. The project is being undertaken by tech startup T-Mining, whose CEO claims, “Our ambition is to serve our first paying customers by the end of 2017.”

And with an office in Singapore, provided by Antwerp city authorities, the port’s blockchain platform could well soon end up with a foothold in Asia, too.

Meanwhile, elsewhere in Asia, thinkers in Malaysia have proposed using blockchain technology to manage smaller so-called Less Container Load (LCL) shipments in China’s ports, where small-scale cargo handling is often “complicated and inefficient.”

Full steam ahead

Many warn that it will not all be plain sailing for the shipping industry’s blockchain pioneers. Earlier this year, Ari Marjamaa, Chief Transformation Officer of logistics experts WWL, warned that blockchain would be “no silver bullet” for the shipping industry. Marjamaa said that without “open standards and industry-wide collaboration,” blockchain ventures could soon run into troubled waters.

Regardless, in the past few weeks, there have been more exciting developments. Maersk has gone on to announce a new blockchain-powered insurance platform with consultants EY, who claim the new offering is a “world-first.” Others, meanwhile, are claiming that blockchain could help shipping companies guard against ransomware and other cyber-attacks.

With the likes of Maersk, HMM and Europe’s two biggest ports already onboard, the blockchain ship seems to have already set sail for this industry – and time will soon tell us how successful these promising maiden voyages have really been.

This is part of the “Blockchain and Industry” series by Tim Alper. Want to see more? Check out:

Featured image from pexels

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South Africa’s Second Largest Supermarket Chain Pick n Pay Trials Bitcoin Payments


South Africa's Second Largest Supermarket Chain Pick n Pay Trials Bitcoin Payments


A major supermarket chain in South Africa, Pick n Pay, has started a trial to accept bitcoin payments in-store at its head office location. A payment technology company named Electrum provides the payments platform, with bitcoin exchange Luno providing the Bitcoin payment infrastructure.

Also read: Five Leading Russian Universities Start Offering Cryptocurrency Courses

Pick n Pay Trials Bitcoin Payments

Pick n Pay is the second largest supermarket chain in South Africa, behind only Shoprite. The company is trialing bitcoin payments at its head office campus store, its payment solution provider Electrum recently announced:

In what is potentially a world first for a major grocery retailer, Electrum has enabled Pick n Pay to accept bitcoin payments in-store.

South Africa's Second Largest Supermarket Chain Pick n Pay Trials Bitcoin PaymentsElectrum provides the cloud-based enterprise payments platform used for bitcoin transactions. It is the first time for the company to provide a bitcoin payment solution.

Founded in 1967, the Pick n Pay group currently employs more than 80,000 people. The South Africa's Second Largest Supermarket Chain Pick n Pay Trials Bitcoin Paymentscompany sells food, clothing and general merchandise. The group has 1,560 stores in total, located in South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Mozambique, Mauritius, Swaziland and Lesotho. However, the trial is only at the head office campus store in Cape Town where customers can pay for groceries and services using bitcoin.

Pick n Pay executive Jason Peisl noted:

Cryptocurrency and bitcoin are still relatively new payment concepts, yet we have been able to effectively demonstrate how we are able to accept such alternative payments.

The bitcoin checkout process involves scanning a printed QR code using a bitcoin wallet app on the customer’s smartphone. The Bitcoin infrastructure is provided by Luno, a bitcoin exchange with a strong presence in Southeast Asia and Africa and an office in Cape Town.

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Bitcoin Adoption Growing in South Africa

“Bitcoin interest and adoption in South Africa is taking off big time,” even though 90% of payments in the country are still cash-based, Luno revealed in April.

The country currently ranks fourth in Google Trends among countries with the most Bitcoin-related searches globally, behind only Nigeria, Bolivia, and Ghana. The most popular search topic is “Bitcoin – Payment System.” Within South Africa, the trend is steadily increasing.

South Africa's Second Largest Supermarket Chain Pick n Pay Trials Bitcoin Payments

In November last year, Luno made a list of stores online and offline where bitcoin payments are accepted in South Africa. The exchange wrote at the time:

We’re happy to say that South Africa has a thriving bitcoin market, with thousands of merchants accepting the virtual currency as payment method…Through our partnership with Payfast, shoppers in South Africa can pay with bitcoin at the thousands of merchants that have the payment method enabled.

What do you think of Pick n Pay accepting bitcoin? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Moneyweb, Google, and Pick n Pay

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Five Leading Russian Universities Start Offering Cryptocurrency Courses


Five Leading Russian Universities Start Offering Cryptocurrency Courses


Many universities across Russia have added new courses to their existing finance curricula that are focused on cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin, and blockchain technology. They will offer these courses for the first time this academic year due to high demand.

Also read: Russia’s Finance Ministry Drafts Law to Legalize Cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrency Courses

Five Leading Russian Universities Start Offering Cryptocurrency Courses
Moscow State University.

A number of top universities in Russia will begin offering special courses and master’s degree classes devoted to the topics of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology for the first time this year, the universities told RT. The courses will be incorporated into the schools’ existing programs in the academic year 2017-2018.

The publication interviewed five universities in particular. Moscow State University (MSU) is a reputable, coeducational public research university. Sergey Studnikov, a managing board member of the MSU economical faculty, runs the Financial Analytics master’s program. He told the news outlet about the school’s new cryptocurrency courses:

We will have master classes immediately for several programs – for this we invite industry representatives.

Five Leading Russian Universities Start Offering Cryptocurrency Courses
Higher School of Economics.

At the Higher School of Economics(HSE), which is one of the leading and largest universities in Russia, the topic is included as part of the school’s Financial Technologies course. This course is part of the Financial Technologies and Data Analysis master’s program which was jointly launched this year with the state-owned Russian banking and financial services company, Sberbank.

The Saint Petersburg State University of Economics(Spbgeu) is devoting two sections of its existing program on banking, finance, and financial markets to cryptocurrency and blockchains. According to an associate professor of the school’s Faculty of Economics and Finance, Denis Gorulev, “to introduce a separate course here, we rely on a number of formal things – this needs to be coordinated with the Ministry of Education a lot and for a long time.”

High Demand for Crypto Classes

Five Leading Russian Universities Start Offering Cryptocurrency Courses
Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology.

Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), also known informally as Phystech, describes itself as “a top 5 Russian university that is highly regarded by scientists, students, and engineers alike.” The institute will teach the IT component of blockchain technology.

According to a director of the MIPT’s School of Applied Mathematics and Informatics, Andrey Raigorodsky, this field is in high demand among both students and employers. “This year we have a couple of special courses,” he told RT, adding that:

This topic is extremely popular.

Five Leading Russian Universities Start Offering Cryptocurrency CoursesThere is strong demand from the school’s industrial partners, he detailed. “For example, Sberbank is working with us now – they have opened a new scientific laboratory, where research on this topic is being conducted.”

The National University of Science and Technology (Misis) is Russia’s primary technological university in the field of steel-making and metallurgy. This summer, Misis and government-owned bank Vnesheconombank (VEB) signed an agreement to create a center for new materials and breakthrough technologies with a focus on blockchain technology, the university told RT. Students will study blockchain technology at the new training center, the publication wrote, adding that:

In particular, students of MSU, HSE, Misis, MIPT and Spbgeu will learn about Bitcoin and other aspects of innovative financial technologies.

What do you think about Russian universities offering Bitcoin and blockchain-focused courses? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, MSU, HSE, MIPT

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Expert: Seven Reasons Why Chinese Regulators Shut Down Bitcoin Exchanges


Expert: Seven Reasons Why Chinese Regulators Shut Down Bitcoin Exchanges


A professor at China’s Renmin University has offered his interpretation of why the regulators are shutting down Chinese bitcoin exchanges. He outlined seven key reasons.

Also read: China’s Regulatory Crackdown Forces More Bitcoin Exchange Closures

Professor Yang Dong is Deputy Dean of Renmin University’s Law School and Director of Renmin’s Centre for Fintech and Internet Security. He has spoken at many workshops that were well attended by regulators such as the Bank of China and the China Securities Regulatory Commission, as well as academic researchers, think tanks and lawyers.

In an interview on CCTV, he offered a series of explanations why the regulators are closing down Chinese bitcoin exchanges, China Finance Online reported on Friday.

Expert: Seven Reasons Why Chinese Regulators Shut Down Bitcoin Exchanges
Professor Yang Dong on CCTV.

Lack of Licensing

The first point he made concerns licensing. He said that financial institutions are required to obtain licenses to carry out business such as by the China Banking Regulatory Commission and the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC). However, he noted that:

At present, China’s domestic virtual currency trading platforms lack the relevant legal license, which leads to the virtual currency trading platforms free from the existing regulatory system. In fact, there is a huge business risk.

The Nature of Bitcoin

Expert: Seven Reasons Why Chinese Regulators Shut Down Bitcoin ExchangesHis second point was regarding the nature of bitcoin itself. “The mechanism of limiting the amount of encrypted money by specific code is controversial,” Professor Yang claimed, citing how a “new encryption system may be invented, the existing algorithm can also be tampered with, the issuance of encrypted money may also increase.”

In addition, he pointed to bitcoin’s high price volatility. According to the professor, digital currencies lack “a clear value base.” He explained that “because there are no economic fundamentals to assess the supply and demand of bitcoins and intrinsic value, the market speculative atmosphere results in sharp fluctuations in prices.” Investors following the trend blindly could suffer significant losses, he added.

Moreover, he said cryptocurrencies are “not affected by the driving force of inflation and the exchange rate difference as well as other issues.”

Money Laundering & Pyramid Schemes

The professor’s third point focused on how digital currency transactions can be used for money laundering and financial fraud, as well as to avoid foreign exchange controls. According to him:

Because virtual currency has no borders, cross-border payments through virtual currency can avoid foreign exchange controls, and there is a greater need to guard against such anonymous transactions for countries and economies where capital projects are not fully open.

He then followed up with his next point, stating that some pyramid schemes and fraudulent activities leverage digital currencies.

Market Manipulation & Security Concerns

Expert: Seven Reasons Why Chinese Regulators Shut Down Bitcoin ExchangesProfessor Yang’s fifth point concerns market manipulation. Anyone investing tens of millions of dollars will be able to easily manipulate the price, sending it skyrocketing, he explained. Any losses are passed onto ordinary investors with less information and a disadvantaged position, he detailed.

His sixth point involves security risks. “Data risk and information security risks are intertwined,” he elaborated. If the security system is not strong enough, hackers can access bitcoins which will lead to a large amount of data loss at the bitcoin exchange and irreparable damage, he added.

Darknet Transactions

The Professor’s final point was about bitcoin being used in darknet markets, which have not been effectively regulated, he described before adding that:

The darknet transactions are without strict protective measures, and will not strictly enforce anti-money laundering, KYC and other effective measures, and are even intended to allow anonymous transactions. The government can not effectively monitor the shortcomings of the darknet.

What do you think of Professor Yang’s explanations of why Chinese bitcoin exchanges are being shut down? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock and China Finance Online

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PR: Bitboost Releases Beta Version of the Block and Prepares Token Generating Event


PR: Bitboost Releases Beta Version of the Block and Prepares Token Generating Event

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

BitBoost, based in Zug, Switzerland, is a blockchain company with a clear purpose in mind: to redefine e-commerce. To that end, they are focused on delivering the next generation of blockchain-based e-commerce solutions. After more than two years of work, the BitBoost team is proud to announce the release of their first app, The Block. Furthermore, the company is also preparing the token generating event of BBT, the BitBoost token, to be used in the app.

The Block is a marketplace built over the Ethereum blockchain, where people can freely trade using smart contracts. At this moment, a beta version is available for private testing, released to a few dozen selected users. Anyone can register for the public beta release, happening at the end of September. Feedback is encouraged to help BitBoost improve their software before final deployment on the Ethereum blockchain later this year.

For this purpose, BitBoost is inviting everybody to register as beta testers. The Block is available for macOS, Windows, and Linux, and will be downloaded at BitBoost´s website. Users will also find a Beta Guide at BitBoost´s YouTube channel, where they will learn how to install, run the app on their computers, and use main features. Testers will have access to the following features: login and logout, item listing and purchasing with ether and BitBoost tokens (BBT), searching, interface customization, bookmarking, escrowing, user rating, and messaging. The app is fully encrypted, and will be available in 20 languages.

BitBoost´s goal is to build, with the help of beta testers, a fully functioning marketplace, such as those already on the Internet, but with a completely different philosophy. Nobody, not even BitBoost, will be able to censor or forbid anyone from listing an item (although the listing feature will provide a security layer to avoid the traffic of illegal goods). Instead of using a centralized approach, BitBoost wants to facilitate e-commerce by making decentralized e-commerce a worldwide activity, with no intermediaries or big players controlling the whole ecosystem.

BitBoost is also planning a token sale for The Block. The pre-sale will start on September 18th, and main sale on October 10th. BitBoost’s approach to the token sale is very clear. As stated by the CEO, Paul Mahone: “we did not want to ask people to buy a token, and after that to wait up to two years to develop a suitable software. We wanted to first develop The Block, and we have been coding since 2015 for this purpose. Once finished and tested, we will generate the tokens needed and sell them to potential users. They will have to wait years before they have the chance to use them. We expect to deploy The Block on the Ethereum live blockchain in 2018, so hopefully tokens issued will be ready to use within a few months. This is a great difference compared to other token sales, and we are proud of being able to offer a working product for our token generating event. We do think that this makes a real difference”.

For further info, BitBoost is releasing weekly updates to its blog and social networks. Those subscribing to the mailing list will receive all related info about The Block and the upcoming token sale.

About BitBoost: BitBoost is a startup focused on the development of new blockchain apps for e-commerce. Incorporated in Zug, its dev team has been working in blockchain since 2014, when they first developed NXT FreeMarket, a marketplace on the NXT blockchain. Since 2015 they have been building this marketplace on the Ethereum network, a more suitable protocol due to smart contracts.

Media contact:
Álvaro Rodríguez, Director of Marketing
email: alvaro.rodriguez@bitboost.net

This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

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Japan’s FSA Approves Coincheck’s Bitcoin Exchange License


Japan's FSA Approves Coincheck's Bitcoin Exchange License

Emerging Markets

Just recently the Japanese exchange Coincheck announced they have become a fully licensed exchange in Japan after being approved by the country’s Finance Bureau Director.

Also read: After the Boss Calls Bitcoin a ‘Fraud’ — JP Morgan Buys the Dip

Japan’s Financial Services Agency Approves Coincheck’s  Cryptocurrency Trading Platform Registration

Japan's FSA Approves Coincheck's Bitcoin Exchange LicenseOn September 13 the Japanese bitcoin trading platform and payment processor, Coincheck, announced the firm had been approved to be a licensed “virtual currency exchange.” The exchange registration approval follows the provisions of Article 63-3 of the country’s fund settlement law. After bitcoin was legalized as a form of payment on April 1, 2017, all domestic exchanges in Japan must receive authorization from the treasury department and Financial Services Agency (FSA) to operate a virtual currency exchange business.

At the time Coincheck was extremely pleased to see the Japanese statutes pass and said the “newly made law and regulations on bitcoin are going be enormous.” Further, the exchange revealed at the time that all exchange providers must be approved by the FSA.

“In order to make the exchanges more secure, cryptocurrency has been handed over to the authority of the FSA,” explains the Coincheck blog this past June.

All the exchange providers and other companies that deal with virtual currency will need to be registered by the FSA before they can start operation. It will help to make cryptocurrency exchanges in Japan tighter, more secure, have scrupulous control.

Coincheck Expands as Japanese Bitcoin Enthusiasm Continues to Grow

Japan's FSA Approves Coincheck's Bitcoin Exchange LicenseJapan has often captured the number one spot in global bitcoin trade volume. Coincheck handles a lot of bitcoin trade volume as the trading platform swapped 97,502 BTC over the past 24-hours. Further back in May the firm announced the creation of interest-bearing bitcoin savings accounts, if the FSA would allow the concept. This past August Coincheck launched a new investment sandbox that tends to crypto-startups and organizations running initial coin offerings (ICO).  

The Japanese trading platform’s new licensure approval follows the demise of the country’s infamous bitcoin exchange Mt Gox and reveals that officials are more comfortable with exchange operations. Moreover, the positive news comes at a time when Chinese bitcoin trading platforms have been forced to close most of its operations.

What do you think about Coincheck getting approved as a licensed bitcoin exchange in Japan? Let us know in the comments below.

Images via Shutterstock, and Coincheck. 

Have you seen our newwidget service? It allows anyone to embed informative Bitcoin.com widgets on their website. They’re pretty cool and you can customize by size and color. The widgets include price-only, price and graph, price and news, forum threads. There’s also a widget dedicated to our mining pool, displaying our hash power. Bitcoin.com has also ramped up our tools section with a variety of useful Bitcoin-related applications. There’s a price converter, paper wallet generator, a faucet, and a verifier to validate messages using the Bitcoin blockchain.

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PR: Ethbet’s Crowdsale For The First Peer-To-Peer Blockchain Gambling Project Opens To Investors Today


This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

Ethbet, the first gambling platform on the Ethereum blockchain that has announced support for peer-to-peer betting, is finally beginning its Crowdsale today, September 17th at 8PM UTC. Although the crowdsale could potentially last for up to four weeks, many are now predicting that it will sell out early within the first day due to its hard cap of only 5,000ETH and high investor demand.

The unique feature that has many excited about Ethbet is that it will be the first on-blockchain platform to allow players to bet directly against each other, a feature that no other similar platforms have been able to offer until now. This allows the costly house edge involved in gambling to be significantly reduced or removed completely, resulting in lower fees for its players. In addition to this, plans have been announced for the ability to gamble using any Ethereum-based token to be added to the platform. Some other Ethbet features include a provably-fair source of randomness, transparent betting, open-source smart contracts, and no need for user deposits, withdrawals, or registration.

In addition to this, the Ethbet platform will also use an off-chain matchmaking service that allows for users to efficiently offer and take bets. As this is done off of the blockchain, bets can be relayed instantly and for free. Then, when a bet needs to be executed, an Ethereum smart contract is used, providing the high level of security and redundancy that is desired. Thanks to this architecture, the Ethbet platform should be a strong competitor in the area of cryptocurrency gambling. With a technical whitepaper describing the Ethbet protocol and a functioning demo on the Ethbet website, the future for Ethbet is looking brighter than ever.

Ethbet Crowdsale begins on September 17th at 8PM UTC, kicking off with a first-day investment bonus of +50% additional tokens. Due to the high demand and bonus that is offered, many investors are predicting that it will sell out quickly. Visit Ethbet’s website and read their whitepaper in order to learn more about this interesting project.

Press Contact Email Address
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This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

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India Considers Issuing Its Own Bitcoin-Like Cryptocurrency as Legal Tender


India Considers Issuing Its Own Bitcoin-Like Cryptocurrency as Legal Tender


While working on creating a legal framework for bitcoin and other digital currencies, the Indian government is now considering launching its own bitcoin-like cryptocurrency. The proposed government cryptocurrency is to be issued by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

Also read: Indian Bitcoin Hotspot Bangalore Sees 50+ Merchants Added This Month

Indian Government’s Fiat Cryptocurrency

The Indian government is considering “a proposal to introduce its cryptocurrency similar to bitcoin,” reportedBusiness Standard on Saturday. This state-run cryptocurrency will be called “Lakshmi,” the name of the Hindu goddess of wealth, fortune, and prosperity. According to sources close to the development:

The proposal was discussed by a committee of government officials…Whenever the decision is taken, the cryptocurrency will fall in the domain of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and some Acts such as the Currency Act might have to be amended. Hence, this will be a time-consuming process.

India Considers Issuing Its Own Bitcoin-Like Cryptocurrency as Legal TenderThis news follows a speech on cryptocurrencies by RBI Executive Director Sudarshan Sen at the India Fintech Day conference. He hinted at the time that the government may be introducing its own fiat cryptocurrency which will be issued by the RBI. “Right now, we have a group of people who are looking at fiat cryptocurrencies. Something that is an alternative to the Indian rupee, so to speak. We are looking at that closely,” he said. In addition, he stressed that the central bank is not comfortable with non-fiat cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin.

Cryptocurrency Regulation in the Works

Meanwhile, the Indian government has been working on creating a legal framework for bitcoin and other digital currencies. Last week, Money Control reported that “the government is going to prepare a framework for bitcoin soon.”

India Considers Issuing Its Own Bitcoin-Like Cryptocurrency as Legal TenderIn April, the same government set up a committee to investigate bitcoin. Last month, Money Control also reported that the committee has submitted its report to the government. It recommended “strict monitoring” of digital currencies, the news outlet detailed, adding that “there is no possibility of immediate restriction,” but the government is also not in favor of promoting them.

The committee has additionally recommended a task force be created comprising of officers from the RBI, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), the Income Tax Department, the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) and the Financial Intelligence Unit. The latter would then monitor the abuse of digital currencies, the news outlet noted.

Do you think India will issue its own fiat cryptocurrency? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Livemint

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Chinese Investors to Trade Bitcoin Over-The-Counter Via Telegram




As Chinese-based bitcoin exchanges plan to shut down, bitcoin investors are taking their trading elsewhere. They will now focus on broker-facilitated, over-the-counter exchanges. 

Also read: Nebraska Ethics Board Allows Attorneys to Accept Bitcoin

Prior to exchange shutdown notices, most traders conducted OTC exchanges on Weechat messenger. As a result of government crackdowns on Weechat users, bitcoiners have made an exodus over to privacy-centric messaging app Telegram. A Quartz article detailed the situation:

The favored app for arranging OTC trades was WeChat, the ubiquitous platform run by Chinese tech giant Tencent. Now brokers are moving to chat platforms operated by non-Chinese companies to keep the trades going, in response to new rules tightening controls on chat groups

A surge of traders have now moved to Telegram for its encryption protocols. They should now be able to disregard government as they continue to trade and speculate on various cryptocurrencies.

Exchange Crackdown Will not Harm Bitcoin

It appears this investor pivot to secret OTC trading, foreshadows how underground bitcoinChinese Investors to Trade Bitcoin Over-The-Counter Via Telegram trading may manifest in China. Investors and brokers will conduct trades silently, under the cover of Telegram’s encrypted darkness. In this sense, it is unlikely bitcoin or cryptocurrency will be harmed in the long term. The resiliency of the technology will emerge while under duress from the Chinese government.

Eric Zhao, the computer engineer who runs the CNLedger Twitter account echoed this sentiment, saying: “Exchanges are not what give value to blockchain assets like bitcoin. It is the intrinsic technology and numerous applications who play decisive roles.”

OTC Trading Necessary Because Chinese Authority May Block Access to Exchanges

Even though Bitcoin will survive regardless of what happens — there are a myriad of unverified reports coming out of China that authorities may block certain bitcoin sites. One document states the Network Bureau would stifle trading.

Chinese Investors to Trade Bitcoin Over-The-Counter Via TelegramLoosely translated, the document states the Bureau would block access to Main BTC exchanges from abroad, including limiting API access. It would also block seed node addressing.

The Chinese government would also take action. It will analyze all DNS and IP addresses, and hand in lists to the IT Bureau. The document further stated:

Meanwhile, to prevent the domestic block nodes to sync with nodes abroad, government will monitor the communication between the domestic block node with the pool(appendix 4). In case of emergency, cut down the network of the pool. Monitor highly on the BTC network’s communication via bridge connection, TOR and VPN etc. Inform the most frequent request.

It is good to keep in mind that these reports are unverified, and they could, in part, be “fake news.” Nonetheless, it is clear the Chinese government is clamping down on cryptocurrencies, but traders appear to be unfazed as they maneuver to access underground and OTC trading networks.

What do you think about JP Morgan Securities Ltd. purchasing bitcoin-based exchange-traded-notes? Let us know in the comments below. 

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