Bitcoin is a form of digital currency that is traded across the world through computing devices. Bitcoin can be converted in other currency such as dollars and euros; however, there is no control over the price of Bitcoin. The main concept behind Bitcoin is to produce and trade a currency that is totally decentralized.
Conventional currencies are based on gold or silver reserves but Bitcoin is based on mathematics calculations. It follows a software program based on purely mathematical calculations. This program is available in open source environment so that everybody around the world can look into it. Bitcoin can be exchanged through various credit cards and payment gateways including PayPal.
Usages of Bitcoin
- Bitcoin Wallet Creation
- Wallet to Wallet Bitcoin Transfer
- Payment Using Bitcoin
- Bill Payment Using Bitcoin
- Exchange of Bitcoin with Local Currency
Bitcoin exchange use peer to peer technology to transfer funds with no middle man or central authority involved. All the transactions are controlled by computer network itself, making it fastest payment method available in world. Bitcoin exchange method complete financial transaction within 10 minutes as compared to other currencies which takes one or two days to complete international transactions.. The agility of payment transaction and feature of open source environment are driving the growth of the global Bitcoin exchange market. Another driving factor for this market is very low processing fees for payment transactions due to decentralized process of Bitcoin.
Absence of consumer protection laws is restricting the growth of the market. In the traditional currency, fraudulent transaction from bank account or credit card are subject to repayment of consumer loses. .
Scaling is another factor which is hampering the growth of the global Bitcoin market. The Bitcoin network methodology requires all the previous transaction to be downloaded in user computing device during transaction. The process is time consuming as it take long hours to download all the transactions.
Segmentation of Bitcoin Exchange market on the basis of currency conversion methods:
- Credit Cards:
Credit cards are generally issued by a bank authority which promises to pay certain amount of money on behalf of the holder of the credit card. The holder pay that money to bank on or before a duration specified by bank. Other than this feature, credit card are used to buy products on EMI. Bitcoin can be purchased and converted to other traditional currencies by credit cards.
- Payment Gateways
A payment gateway is online payment service provider that is used to make payment for e-commerce and online transactions. Payment made through the payment gateways is more secure than credit or debit cards. Now-a-days, there are several payment gateways which facilitate Bitcoin transactions. Some of them are PayPal, Cash in Mail, and Personal Check.
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Increasing penetration of internet across the world is paving the way for Bitcoin exchange.. North America holds the biggest scope for the development of Bitcoin exchange with around 313,862,863 internet users, according to Internet World Stats. The U.S. and Canada hold maximum potential for Bitcoin market. Recently, in the past two years, various conferences related to Bitcoin have held in North America region in order to bring awareness among the consumers. Some of them include:
- The Future of Money: Cashing Out on Cash
- Insight Bitcoin San Diego
- Block Chain Conference San Francisco
- Insight Bitcoin New York
Asia-Pacific region is also showing modest growth for the Bitcoin exchange with more than 200 million internet users. This is merely 17% of the total population of Asia-Pacific region. The evolution of LTE technology in the countries including China, India, and Japan will create enhanced infrastructure for internet users. With increasing awareness, the market is expected to observe potential revenue opportunity in this region in the near future.
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In Europe, countries such as U.K, Germany, and France are holding good potential for Bitcoin exchange. Latin America and Middle East and Africa, have still not witnessed wide adoption of Bitcoin exchange; however, with increasing awareness about the features offered by Bitcoin, the market is expected to observe substantial growth during the forecast period.
Bitstamp, Bitfinex, Coinbase, Cryptsy, and BTC-e are some of the leading Bitcoin exchange in the world.