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What is Bitcoin and What Can You Do With It?

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What is Bitcoin and What Can You Do With It?

Bitcoin (BTC) is the biggest and most popular cryptocurrency in the world. This guide has everything Bitcoin-related that you could need to know, from a clear definition to information on the different ways you can use it!

Flashback to January 2009. Bitcoin was released, and it changed the internet forever.

Now, fast-forward to 2023. There are thousands of different cryptocurrencies to choose from – and it’s all thanks to the influence of Bitcoin.

But what exactly is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin: a virtual currency that exists exclusively over the internet.

Bitcoin isn’t regulated by any bank or governing authority. In other words, it’s a free-for-all: anyone can invest in Bitcoin and do whatever they like with it. This raises another important question: what can you do with Bitcoin?

For years, this question has been on millions of people’s minds, as they still don’t fully understand what the purpose of Bitcoin is.

However, it’s actually pretty simple and not that different from how you use traditional currencies like the US dollar.

To help get you up to scratch, let’s take a closer look at some of the best (and most exciting) things that you can do with Bitcoin:

Bitcoin Gambling

Let’s start with an incredibly fun activity: Bitcoin gambling. Over the past decade, well-known online gambling apps like the Bet365 app, as a good example, have skyrocketed in popularity. As a result, 11 percent of US adults now say that they’ve taken part in online sports betting during their lifetime (EarthWeb).

Traditionally, people have only been able to gamble online using conventional currencies. However, this is quickly starting to change, as Bitcoin gambling is now beginning to take over.

That’s right: you can now gamble online using Bitcoin! The most popular options for this are:

  • Online casino games
  • Live sports matches

Once you join a gambling app or website that accepts Bitcoin, you can then make a deposit and start playing.

Usually, there will be a minimum Bitcoin deposit required, such as 0.0003 BTC (which equates to $5.13).

After making your first deposit, you can then jump into the action, place your wagers, and try and win Bitcoin in return.

Buy and Hold

When it comes to Bitcoin, many people like to be smart by following the ‘buy and hold’ strategy. The process here is simple: buy Bitcoin, hold it, and then sell when the value goes up.

Most people cash out their Bitcoin using coin exchanges like Coinbase. For example, if someone buys $10,000 worth of Bitcoin and the market value goes up by 25%, then that individual will be able to sell their Bitcoin for $12,500 – making a $2,500 profit.

If you’re a business-minded individual with a passion for investment, then this is definitely something you’ll want to try.

However, Bitcoin’s market value can fluctuate day-to-day; sometimes going up and other times going down.

For anyone who invests in Bitcoin and the value suddenly drops, don’t panic. Bitcoin’s value has fallen significantly in the past, only to increase over the following months and years. The ‘buy and hold’ strategy is all about patience.

Make Private Transactions

Bitcoin is great for private transactions. Through crypto exchanges and your own crypto wallets, you can make as few or as many transactions as you like. These transactions can be for personal or business reasons.

The main attraction point behind private Bitcoin transactions is precisely that: they’re private.

Unlike traditional bank transactions, you can keep your name and personal details entirely anonymous. This is why millions of people make private Bitcoin transactions every year.

Do Online Shopping

With Bitcoin, you can now buy plenty of different things online. From luxury watches to event tickets, the list is pretty much endless.

At this moment in time, most major stores still don’t accept crypto.

However, some big names, such as Microsoft and Shopify, do accept Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, which is great for modern consumers who have made investments.

When you purchase something using Bitcoin, you will still receive a receipt and will have the option to make a return for any of the accepted reasons.

Use Different Service Providers

Although many online retailers are yet to start accepting Bitcoin, there are lots of online service providers that are a step ahead of the game. Here are some of the most popular service providers that now allow consumers to gain access to their services using Bitcoin:

  • Reddit: You can buy premium subscription features using Bitcoin
  • Twitch: Make donations and access exclusive features using Bitcoin
  • NordVPN: Purchase subscriptions using Bitcoin

Moving into the future, it’s highly likely that music and movie streaming services – such as Apple Music and Netflix – will open up subscription plans that can also be purchased using Bitcoin.

How Can You Purchase Bitcoin?

To purchase Bitcoin, the best method to use is a crypto exchange. Think of crypto exchanges as the ‘banks’ of the crypto world.

In exchange for dollars (or your other chosen currency), you can add Bitcoin to your exchange account.

Let’s say that you deposit $1,000 in exchange for Bitcoin. This would get you 0.059 BTC.

From there, you have two choices:

  • Keep the Bitcoin in the exchange you’ve used
  • Transfer it to your own personal ‘hot’ or ‘cold’ crypto wallet

Typically, most people store Bitcoin in their own digital wallets.

However, if you wish to keep it in the exchange you’ve chosen, that’s also a suitable option. Both come with their own positives and negatives.

For instance, if you store your Bitcoin in an exchange, then you’re relying on the security measures that they have in place. If their servers get hacked, and your Bitcoin gets stolen, then it’s bad news.

How Do You Transfer and Deposit Bitcoin?

Transferring and depositing Bitcoin is also relatively simple.

If you’re transferring money to a business or individual, they’ll need to provide you with their unique wallet address.

On the other hand, if you’re depositing Bitcoin to play an online game or do some gambling, then you’ll need to transfer it to a unique blockchain address provided by the company.

Is Bitcoin Safe?

One of the biggest topics surrounding Bitcoin is safety.

Many people are apprehensive and nervous about investing in Bitcoin because of safety fears. In reality, though, Bitcoin is incredibly safe in terms of cybersecurity.

Provided that you use a genuine crypto exchange and (or) crypto wallet, then there’s nothing to worry about.

However, having said this, there are various security measures that you need to follow.

For example, if you’re storing your Bitcoin in a cold wallet (a hardware-based wallet), then it’s your responsibility to look after the hardware.

If your hardware becomes lost, damaged, or stolen, then you face the possibility of permanently losing the Bitcoin you’ve invested in.

Of course, this is something that you won’t want to happen, which is why you need to be very careful and follow the latest crypto cybersecurity tips and best practices.

Summary

After reading all of the above, you now know the ins and outs of Bitcoin, from how it works to what you can do with it.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a professional investor or a normal everyday person; anyone can invest in Bitcoin.

If you decide to go ahead and do this, make sure to only invest in an amount that you’re comfortable with before going with your preferred storage method.

After doing this, you’ll be able to spend your Bitcoin however you like, such as in an online casino or to purchase goods from an online retailer.

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