The Future of Cryptocurrencies in India

“Bitcoin the next big thing since Internet itself”

With regards to the Blockchain, India can’t be overlooked. It is an incredible nation with more than a billion people who recently experienced demonetisation. That is the time that numerous Indians started capitalizing their cash in Bitcoin and proceed to owe them now. This spike drove some tech-savvy citizens to purchase Bitcoins as well as accomplish something with the blockchain protocol itself.

Calling bitcoins, the “next big thing since the internet and computing” themselves are major statements to make. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies may not be much of a threat to fiat currencies today.

 “Virtual currencies are in a different category because they provide their own unit of account and payment systems. These systems allow for peer-to-peer transactions without central clearinghouses, without central banks. Reaching across borders will be critical as the focus of regulation widens- from national entities to border-less activities, from your local bank branch to quantum-encrypted global transactions” as stated by Christine Lagarde

This year, we have seen the crypto network growing at a rapid pace. While until today there is no clear policy or regulation on cryptocurrency. The government and courts stand have been unclear. Though entrepreneurs in the country are making the most of the opportunity.

In a country like India, where we value everything by its monetary worth, the sure-shot way to beat cash is to make currency that is more valuable than cash.

Apart from that, there is no one who understands Indian consumers better than native companies. A crypto exchange and a wallet that would allow hundreds of millions of citizens to become part of the crypto economy will be a great leap for the entire blockchain community.

What about the challenges ahead.

One of the most challenging battle that humanity has ever faced would bring the masses to the blockchain. In the current times, we understand that there is no need for hierarchy. There will always be bureaucrats, politicians and corporates who may not like it over giving up the control or power. Thus, making it a tough journey.

In fact, blockchain and cryptocurrencies can’t be prohibited without banning the internet itself. What if in future a nation decides to declare blockchain or cryptocurrency to be illegal? While it would probably be impossible to identify everyone, who owns crypto assets and put them behind bars, a move such as this could disincentives merchants, businesses, and websites from advertising their willingness and putting put up a banner saying, “Cryptos accepted here.” When that happens, in my view, you take away an entire leg for an economy to stand on. Without merchants to accept crypto, its value proposition as a replacement for money goes away.

In India, there are no regulations around cryptocurrencies yet. It is also less likely that the country will bring its own cryptocurrency. Also, government and courts stand have been unclear. Nobody knows which way the camel will sit. It can become an opportunity to put the nation as a forward-thinking one or remain an incumbent.

What does the future hold?

It’s been nearly five years since its India début, bitcoins are now coming of age here, with traders gearing up for a giant leap. Indian exchanges of the digital money are gearing up to launch bitcoin futures early next year; but first, they want to integrate other cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum, Ripple and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) on their platform.

This follows the launch of bitcoin futures and the subsequent rise of the cryptocurrency’s value in the global markets — its value hit an all-time high of nearly $8,000 in November.

There are about 1,000 alternative coins in the global market out of which Ethereum being the most popular one. Many Indians are trading in cryptocurrency due to their higher volatility. Right now, people buy bitcoins from Indian exchanges and then convert them into other cryptocurrencies from international exchanges.

Going by the current trend, it might not be wise to invest in Bitcoin, but you can very well invest in Ethereum, BAT, STRAT, etc. These are going to go higher giving you good returns if you invest now.

Acquiring cryptocurrency is only the first step towards building a blockchain enabled India. There is scope for more applications than there are actual blockchain use cases. In this context, registering with the best exchange will take you there before anyone else.

Where will crypto be in the future?

According to me Bitcoin, or the technology behind it, that is, the blockchain will have a prosperous future. Its importance goes far beyond bitcoin and payment transactions as this is just one – and the banalest – of its application.

Davide Menegaldo, COO at Helperbit, said, “I would imagine this scenario: in the future financial instruments linked to bitcoin will be finally approved. High finance will invest into the cryptocurrency (more than the 300M expected for the bitcoin ETF approval). I’m thinking about 5-10 times the current price. Bitcoin will not necessarily be used as a method of payment (it depends also on how the size block / Segregated witness / LN matter will proceed or will not), but primarily it will be used as a store of value. However, there will be much more competition as a payment method because some banks could issue their own cryptocurrency, while the current ones will remain a handful. Ethereum will consolidate as the second most important infrastructure, and 99% of ICO tokens will have any value”

The emergence of Bitcoin has sparked a debate about its future and that of other cryptocurrencies. Despite Bitcoin’s recent issues, its success since its 2009 launch has inspired the creation of alternative cryptocurrencies such as Litecoin, Ripple and MintChip.

The future of blockchain based cryptocurrencies is bright and I am confident that blockchain is the way ahead. Decentralised and hybrid apps will take over the market in the coming years. For that, you need to be prepared to have some cryptocurrencies in your kitty. Very soon companies might even start paying salaries in bitcoin/ethers or other cryptocurrencies.

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