Bitcoin was created after the economic crisis with a goal to create a currency that isn’t tied to a single economy. However, fast forward a decade after, Bitcoin still hasn’t been considered as the main currency being used by the world. In fact, there are 1,800 digital currencies today, not to mention ICOs. And unfortunately, many ICOs today are considered a scam.
If you will ask Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse, he called Bitcoin as not the “panacea” that can solve the problems that people initially thought it the digital currency would. Instead, Bitcoin has problems within its network from slow transactions to the high cost of transactions.
Ripple offers an alternative to Bitcoin. In fact, it is currently floating at around 65 cents. Ripple has also partnered up with some financial institutions in order to increase its adoption. For Garlinghouse, “I think it’s (bitcoin) not going to be the panacea that people once thought it would be, where it would solve all of these different kinds of problems…Instead, you’re specializations of different kind of ledgers, different kinds of blockchains”. He also pointed out the fact that Bitcoin is slow while Ripple offers something that is thousand times faster.
To give you an idea, Bitcoin recently needs around 42 minutes in order to confirm a transaction. On the other hand, XRP can handle a transaction in just four seconds.
Ripple vs. Other Coins?
Though many see Ripple going head to head with Bitcoin and other coins, Garlinghouse doesn’t have this kind of view. He said that “Well, I don’t really think about it as one versus the other. I mean, it’s actually unfortunate, I think, that there’s some people in this, the crypto space, the blockchain space—for them, it’s almost a holy war of one versus the other. I don’t look at that at all”. He added that “I think what we’re seeing is the overall growth of this space and there will be many winners”.
Ripple has been sued by those who lost money by investing in the digital currency. Ryan Coffey claims that Ripple violated US securities law. Will this case amount to anything? Only time will actually tell. In fact, it should be clear that the crypto market is extremely volatile.
In fact, Bitcoin was trading at around $20,000 in mid-December only to just float around $7,200 today. The lawsuit against Ripple alleges that the founders of Ripple “earned massive profits by quietly selling off this XRP to the general public, in what is essentially a never-ending initial coin offering”.
Garlinghouse has called the lawsuit outrageous. He mentioned that “Whether or not XRP is a security is not going to be dictated by one lawsuit… I think it’s very clear that XRP is not a security, it does exist independently of Ripple the company. If Ripple the company is shut down tomorrow, the XRP ecosystem would continue to exist. It’s an independent, open-sourced technology”.
There are many challenges faced by different cryptocurrencies today. In fact, not all regulators agree how to approach cryptos. And mainly because of this, different countries have their different initiatives. For instance, Russia recently decided not to consider cryptocurrencies as money. Also, New York is trying to make sense of it all as they try to study everything that relates to the industry.