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🤷 Opinions Alexander Goborov

EOS Isn’t Blockchain, Merely a Cloud Service: Yay or Nay?

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A scientific study commissioned by Ethereum’s partners claims that EOS is not the company it says it is, but can we know for sure?
EOS Isn’t Blockchain, Merely a Cloud Service: Yay or Nay?
Contents

EOS is one of the current leaders of the crypto market. Standing at roughly 5.50 USD per each EOS token, as of right now, it is in the top five cryptocurrencies by market capitalization with close to 5 billion USD following Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, and Bitcoin Cash. Very recently, however, there have been claims that EOS is not actually a decentralized Blockchain-based platform (accordingly, nor is its token) but actually a very centralized cloud service. With so much technology and information hidden behind closed doors, this could, hypothetically speaking, be a valid claim. But before jumping to any rushed conclusions, let us first quickly examine the evidence and get a little bit of history.

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What is EOS?

The EOS platform along with its native cryptocurrency is a relatively new creation which emerged on the market as a post-test alpha version only in the winter of this year. Because of this and the nature of the market itself, the EOS token has been demonstrating a substantial amount of volatility: its price was four times the current price just six months ago, at the end of April. However, the token’s overall grip on the market remains firm.

One of the key people behind the creation of EOS is the 32-year-old native of Iowa now based in Hong Kong, Brendan Blumer (by now a crypto millionaire), who facilitated the creation of EOS together with the programmer Daniel Larimer through their software development company Block.one, unsurprisingly based in the tax-free haven of Cayman Islands.

EOS pretty much followed the usual pattern, but did so swimmingly. First, even prior to launching the EOS platform, Block.one distributed a billion of its ERC-20 certified tokens onto the market through the Ethereum Blockchain.

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The next phase was the infamous Initial Coin Offering (ICO), essentially a public sale of the crypto product-to-be to investors, during which a staggering total of 4 billion USD was raised in addition to the one billion USD collected from token sales. The ICO portion of the launch was heavily criticized in the Wall Street Journal, who called it a “coin with no purpose” demanding needlessly astronomical sums in support.

Whatever criticisms may come their way, EOS did manage to catapult themselves right onto the top floor of the crypto skyscraper, and it doesn’t look like it was a fluke, but rather a well thought-through strategy coupled with the supreme technological know-how.  

Commissioned Research and the Big Claim

The most recent criticism claiming that EOS is not a Blockchain company but more of a cloud-storing service (i.e. “a distributed database system”) is actually coming from people intimately tied to Ethereum. The research inquiry was commissioned by the New York-based company ConsenSys founded by the Canadian entrepreneur Joseph Lubin in 2015 for the sole purpose of writing software for decentralized services to be run on the Ethereum Blockchain. The company that actually carried out the research is called Whiteblock, based in Los Angeles, with Whiteblock’s CTO (Chief Technology Officer), Zac Cole, acting as one of the authors of the report.

So, with the scientific research having been requested by the company whose very slogan is “Harness the Power of Ethereum”, this does seem a little like an attempt to discredit a serious rival, especially in light of the fact that EOS initially used Ethereum as a springboard to launch itself before parting ways with the Vitaliks. Whether this is crypto vengeance, competition, or simply solid computer science, let us look at some of the actual claims of the study:

  • Instead of proof-of-work (anyone can mine and contribute to the network), EOS uses delegated proof-of-stake technology (i.e. those who process transactions are selected by EOS), which is inherently centralized.

“The research results prove the inaccuracies in performance claims and concluded that the foundation of the EOS system is built on a flawed model that is not truly decentralized.”

  • EOS lacks a working protocol that prevents block producers from undoing history and potentially colluding with one another in order to maintain their role as exclusive block producers, which is inherently unfair and, more importantly, unsafe.

“The ability to undo history (or anything for that matter) related to state is a notion that directly conflicts with the essential definition of what can be considered a blockchain, which is characterized by immutability of data.”

  • EOS does not use cryptography (hence, obviously, not a Blockchain); instead, it uses a “black box” with stored data from its users’ transactions, which is inherently cloud-like.

“EOS is not a blockchain, rather a distributed homogeneous database management system, a clear distinction in that their transactions are not cryptographically validated.”

Conclusion Follows, or Does It?

All commotion aside, one must be a true expert in the field of Blockchain programming and have all of the facts at hand in order to offer a worthy comment on the scientific side of the study. As a result, drawing a formal conclusion appears to be, largely, an immature enterprise. At the very least, we need an official spokesperson from EOS to respond, and, better yet, another independent group of researchers, not funded by any company with a vested interest, to recreate and validate the study’s findings.

In a recent interview with CCN, Cole claimed that his team of researchers at Whiteblock was not comprised of EOS people, nor Ethereum people, but simply Blockchain people, stipulating that the intent of their research “wasn’t to prove that one was better than the other but rather provide an objective scientific analysis.” Cole also stated that their research had been funded by 20 different companies, not just the Ethereum-backed ConsenSys. Be that as it may, we should add that the other, non-Whiteblock researchers on the paper happen to be from Vulcan Labs and are, in fact, ConsenSys’s employees.

Whatever the claims, either in the paper itself or in regards to how or why the idea for this research emerged in the first place, it is reasonable to suppose that the study Whiteblock and ConsenSys have offered is worth examining: there may, indeed, be something in it. Nevertheless, how much of it is true―and in science, truth is only what can be shown legit many times over―still remains to be seen. For now, preparing but ultimately holding one’s judgement may the noblest thing to do.

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Ripple Focusing on Where the Money Is – the MENA Region

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Ripple has seen significant uptake in the MENA region of the Middle East and North Africa, so it is taking its focus there
Ripple Focusing on Where the Money Is – the MENA Region
Contents

The Middle East, despite the strife and conflict, has grown to be a place of vast wealth with the likes of Dubai and Abu Dhabi shining bright in that region as places of immense wealth. This region, along with North Africa, known as the MENA region, is thus a very important place, especially for Ripple.

Ripple has stated that it is focusing a lot of its attention on the MENA region, and it is a two-part approach as it is aware of the potential there, but it has also seen significant interest from the region already.

Not only is the MENA region one of the fastest adopters of Ripple’s product, but they are also friendly to digital assets in terms of a regulatory standpoint. Since October, Ripple has been trying to expand there in a move which is quite smart.

The banking-focused cryptocurrency XRP and its parent company Ripple have been seeking partnerships in the MENA region, and it is starting to show, as they are starting to see traction.

The place to be

Ripple’s Head of Infrastructure Innovation Dilip Rao has spoken on the importance of the MENA region, recently mentioning that it is adopting the distributed ledger technology solutions from Ripple at a rapid rate.

They have been signing up banks in Saudi Arabia and UAE and other countries like Oman and Kuwait.

Rao said:

“The enthusiasm of the regulator, the central banks to also encourage the use of Ripple technology to build new infrastructure for payment rails.”

It makes sense that Ripple has decided to focus its efforts into the Middle East, especially with the interest it has there, and also because of the potential in its expanding and impressive banking system.

Banks showing their interest

For Ripple, it is mostly about partnering with banks so they utilize the blockchain assets of their XRP token in order to make the intra-banking payments easier, cheaper and more efficient.

So far, they have seen strong interest from the banks in the MENA region, and are thus driving deeper in. The banking system in the MENA region, especially in the developing middle eastern countries are far less attached to their legacy banking systems, something that has been a handbrake for the general adoption of blockchain and cryptocurrencies.

Banks in the MENA region are thus far happier to use the XRP token and xRapid product to solve visibility and liquidity problems in global remittances.

There are also far more lenient and open minded regulators in the Middle East which are willing to look into the new and forward-thinking options that are out there. It is because of this that Ripple has decided to pursue this region, and should it be a success, it would be the perfect platform to launch a more global offensive in terms of adoption.

Regulation inclined

Ripple has always been a cryptocurrency which has taken a different path from most others. Its intention is to work with traditional financial structures and help upgrade them rather than replace them, and to this end, it relies heavily on a welcoming regulatory standpoint.

In the MENA region, Ripple has found an open minded general approach to these financial tech rules, and to that end it has seen adoption start taking hold. It remains to be seen if Ripple can totally colonize the MENA region with its solutions, but it is positive that it is focusing in on an area which has an open pathway.

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Ethereum Will Overtake Bitcoin But Competition Will Come From Ripple

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Bitcoin has always seemed untouchable, but that will, in time, change with Ethereum, the likely successor and Ripple the chaser
Ethereum Will Overtake Bitcoin But Competition Will Come From Ripple
Contents

Ever since the genesis block, which was just over 10 years ago now, Bitcoin has stood firm at the top of the cryptocurrency tree with challengers never really getting close to its fame, or market cap.

However, the days of a handful of cryptocurrencies are well and truly over thanks in part to the ICO boom of 2016/17, as well as the development of other major cryptos in the past five or so years.

Ethereum was a breakaway development in blockchain and cryptos as the team behind it looked to create a “World Computer” rather than a simple distributed ledger. In terms of functionality, Ethereum opened the doors wide open.

This has led to a number of key projects trying to advance upon what Ethereum has done, such as NEO, EOS, and Cardano, just to name a few, but there have also been advancements in other uses for Blockchain.

The likes of Ripple have gone in their own, quite separate direction, but their mandate is starting to make more and more sense as it is realised that institutions and companies want to integrate blockchain, rather than be replaced by it.

True, Bitcoin evangelists will never admit that it can be replaced as the major cryptocurrency, but that is short sighted. The world is looking for a functional blockchain that can offer a lot, and that is why Ethereum will overtake Bitcoin, but don’t write off Ripple just yet.

Ripple is the one cryptocurrency that has from day one tried to distance itself from the “Cypherpunk” ways and rather offer itselves up to the “Big Evil” of banks and other institutions.

What we have seen is for cryptocurrencies and blockchains to be a success, they need to integrate and play along with the established order of regulators, institutions and governments.

Ethereum’s superior offerings

Bitcoin of course is revolutionary and quite ahead of its time, even 10 years from its creation. However, time moves fast in technology and really, it is starting to show that it is fairly outdated as well.

Bitcoin’s success is predicated largely on its size, popularity, and age, whereas its offering is quite straightforward. That is not necessarily a bad thing; if it does one simple thing perfectly, it is still perfectly good.

Bitcoin is a blockchain that facilitates the movement of tokens across a distributed ledger, and that is great from a financial standpoint, but the potential that blockchain offers is underutilized by the biggest blockchain there is.

Ethereum is a blockchain that recognised this early on, with Vitalik Buterin helping create Ethereum when he realised Bitcoin’s inefficiencies. The smart contract system and its design as a platform makes it far more accessible and applicable in today's modern world.

Companies, institutions, even start ups and other blockchain developers, are looking to Ethereum for its usefulness, and because of this, once the blockchain reaches a level of functionality and stability that only comes from time and experience, one should see it start to encroach on Bitcoin's market cap.

Ripple’s roaring success

So, while Ethereum is broad and open to a multitude of projects and applications, it is also dogged by other competitors that could sink it as a better offering. However, when it comes to Ripple, one can see it is fairly unique and quite desirable for banks looking to break into blockchain.

It is developed to be an intra-bank payment system that utilizes the blockchain, and it is arguably a centralised blockchain, meaning that it has a face and an organisation that people can do business with in the traditional sense.

This makes it much more attractive to banks who the blockchain is aimed at, and the reason why the market it is chasing is so important is because, like it or not, banks hold a lot of sway around the globe.

If Ripple can reach critical mass with banking institutions and become a staple for their digital needs, that traditional power behind them will see them catapult up the market cap and could overtake Bitcoin and Ethereum quite quickly.

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Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down

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When Lambo? U.Today has determined the top 10 reasons why Bitcoin is in a freefall, and why Lambo bros could be one of these reasons behind the crash
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down
Contents

Bitcoin (BTC), despite recently surging by 10 percent, still remains in the doldrums with its price being nearly 75 percent below last year’s ATH. On Nov. 25, Bitcoin recorded a 36 percent weekly drop (the second worst in its entire ten-year history).
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Numerous theories are floating around the infamous Bitcoin crash. U.Today has picked up some of the most relevant ones.       

The frontloaded success of cryptocurrency mining

During Bitcoin’s early days, your ordinary computer would be suitable for mining Bitcoin, but then it turned into a massive international business with full-fledged mining farms and ASIC manufacturers engaging in a fiery competition with each other.
pik
Eventually, the Bitcoin mining craze reached its boiling point in the first half of 2018 when profitability started to decline due to a double-whammy of falling prices and increasing cryptocurrency mining difficulty. AMD and Nvidia are ditching the then-lucrative business niche while miners are selling off their Bitcoins in droves to cover their losses.      

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Regulatory roadblocks

The regulatory uncertainty around Bitcoin remains one of the main factors that hinder its growth. Many suggested that the SEC’s crackdown on two ICOs triggered a prolonging bearish trend that finally broke Bitcoin’s multi-week streak of stability. During his recent interview, Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire said that there is a need for more regulatory clarity when it comes to distinguishing between securities and commodities in the cryptocurrency market.  
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down
Infighting within the Bitcoin community
The everlasting scalability debate created a great schism in the Bitcoin community. First, there was a Bitcoin Cash hard fork. This November, the division inside the Bitcoin Cash community also came to a head, which subsequently resulted in the creation of yet another hard fork – Bitcoin SV. The Bitcoin community infighting is obviously a disheartening sign for cryptocurrency investors who might be tempted to jump ship.   
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down

FOMO turned into FUD

 According to Oxford Capital, the unprecedented rise of Bitcoin was largely fueled by the populist movement. During their Thanksgiving dinners, numerous people would hear mesmerizing stories about how much money you can make in a snap because of the volatile asset class. Once the Bitcoin price started freefalling, the new investors found themselves in a panic mode, and the cryptocurrency massive sell-off intensified. Nevertheless, the number of ID-verified users has almost doubled in the market this year (from 18 to 35 mln).
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down
Numerous technical indicators point to the fact that Bitcoin is massively oversold (after being equally overbought last December). That essentially means that the real market value of the flagship cryptocurrency is much higher, and the Bitcoin price could rise in the nearest future.

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Rampant market manipulations

Speaking of cryptocurrency’s nouveau riche, it is worth mentioning that just over 1,600 investors (commonly known as ‘cryptocurrency whales’) control almost a third of the whole cryptocurrency market. Hence, these powerful industry players can easily tip the scale in order to manipulate the price of Bitcoin.
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down
For instance, they have the power to tank Bitcoin price by fabricating a sell-off. Shortly after that, Bitcoin becomes a powder keg waiting to explode since many FUD-driven investors are to most likely follow suit.  

No institutional money

The launch of CBOE and CBF Bitcoin futures became the driving factor behind Bitcoin’s bull run. There were high hopes that institutional investors would dive into the nascent industry but that wasn’t the case. Back in July, the Bitcoin price experienced a short-term pullback when there was mounting anticipation for the Bitcoin ETF approval. However, the Winklevoss brothers failed to get the green light from the SEC to launch their Bitcoin ETF.  
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down
However, the good thing about 2018 is that major institutional players in the likes of Fidelity are finally tossing their hats into the cryptocurrency ring. Earlier, Wall Street permabull Mike Novogratz predicted that 2019 will be the year of institutional money falling right into Bitcoin’s lap. Goldman Sachs and Coinbase already offer custody solutions for Bitcoin investors.  

Bakkt, the ICE-backed cryptocurrency exchange, is expected to launch its Bitcoin futures product on Jan. 24, 2019, which is supposed to be an icebreaker when it comes to institutional involvement.         

The ‘Blockchain over Bitcoin’ narrative

Mainstream media outlets have seemingly adopted a narrative that only Blockchain, the disruptive technology that made its debut in Satoshi’s white paper, will survive. Bitcoin is a mirage, bubble, scam, rat poison squared – you name it (the same goes for other top cryptocurrencies).
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down
While Blockchain technology is also going through its ‘growing pains’ stage, it already has plenty of real-life use cases that are changing the face of multibillion-dollar industries, including:

  • healthcare;

  • governance;

  • banking sector;

  • education;

  • food chain supply.

Bitcoin failed to break into the mainstream as a viable replacement for fiat money, and the lack of real-life adoption is very discouraging for those who want to invest in the currency.

News about the recent stock market crash  

This November, Bitcoin’s crash coincided with the equity crash (which marked the end of a ten-year-long bull run). That gave ground to plenty of gloomy predictions about the looming economic crisis. Earlier, U.Today reported about an increasing correlation between Bitcoin and stocks – these two markets move in tandem, at least in the short-term.  
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down

US investors avoiding paying capital gain taxes

Lastly, there is also a theory that US investors could be simply avoiding paying capital gain taxes. Those who made mammoth-sized profits in 2017 when Bitcoin reached its ATH went on a sell-off spree before filing their April taxes the next year. The situation is quite absurd: Bitcoin investors might not have enough coins to pay taxes for 2017 in the middle of the cryptocurrency winter. It has been estimated that cryptocurrency investors could owe the IRS as much as $25 bln.  

Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down

Mainstream media coverage

Lastly, Clovr research shows that mainstream media outlets typically cover Bitcoin more when the price goes up. For instance, Bitcoin reached its media peak during its sudden downfall right after reaching the ATH of almost $20,000. There was a spike in coverage during every Bitcoin drop that followed, which means that mainstream news sites profit from amplifying the FUD. Notably, conservative outlets have the highest negative to positive ratio, with 88.7 percent of all pieces putting Bitcoin’s worst days in the limelight.
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down

Will the BTC price recover?

Bitcoin’s price has been falling steadily since reaching its December peak, and some experts predict that this negative trend will most probably continue well into 2019. For instance, Bloomberg’s Mike McGlone believes that the king of cryptocurrencies could reach its bottom at the $1,500.     
Top 10 Reasons Why Bitcoin Is Falling Down
Nevertheless, despite the dramatic rout, Bitcoin remains the best performing asset of the last five years, trumping stocks, bonds, and fiat currencies. As the market is maturing, there is a good reason to believe that Bitcoin is far from being dead, and people’s expectations are simply too high.

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Bitcoin Price Prediction for 2019: Will BTC Price Get Back to $20,000?

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U.Today takes its crystal ball to come up with the most accurate Bitcoin price forecast for 2019. Read Bitcoin price predictions for 2019 from top industry experts
Bitcoin Price Prediction for 2019: Will BTC Price Get Back to $20,000?
Contents

As the New Year’s ball is about to drop, Bitcoin enthusiasts will have one wish – a major bull run. In this article, we are delving into the top 2019 Bitcoin price predictions.

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Prepare for a January slump

It doesn’t take a seasoned technical analyst or a crystal ball to determine what to expect from Bitcoin this January. Historically, every single year starts with a bloodbath for the world’s biggest cryptocurrency. The media coverage of Bitcoin peaked in early 2017 when the much-hyped digital currency suddenly dropped by -47%. However, that wasn’t even the biggest January drop that BTC has experienced over the past five years.

Year  

January drop

2014

-23.5 percent

2015

-48.5 percent

2016

-23.5 percent

2017

-36.5 percent

2018

-47 percent

Another instance of Bitcoin’s seasonality pertains to Chinese New Year (or Lunar New Year). In fact, Bitcoin has followed the same pattern for the past three years, setting new lows that were immediately followed by price upticks.  

Source: Shutterstock

Expert predictions for 2019: Bitcoin bulls

Fran Strajnar: $200,000 by Jan. 1, 2020  
How high Bitcoin will go? We are starting with an uber-bullish prediction made by the CEO of Brave New Coin who made an outlandish forecast, claiming that Bitcoin could reach $200,000 by the start of 2020. A constantly growing Bitcoin adoption will be the main driving force behind the price of the currency.

Ronnie Moas: $28,000
During the World Crypto Con, Ronnie Moas shared his forecast for the end of 2019: $28,000. He further explained that the 2018 price slump was merely a bump in the road due to the fact that many investors went on a sell-off spree. Moas also encouraged hodlsters not to lose faith in the currency.   

Mike Kayamori: a brand-new new ATH in 2019
Mike Kayamori, the CEO of major Japanese exchange Quoine, predicts that Bitcoin could repeak in 2019 given that ‘the bottom is near.’ Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) is actively cooperating with the cryptocurrency industry, which gives ground for Kayamori’s bullish forecast.  
 
Sonny Singh: $20,000 by the end of 2019
Bitpay’s Sonny Singh has come up with one of the most bullish forecasts as he thinks that Bitcoin will climb to $20,000 next year, thus matching its current ATH. Bakkt launching Bitcoin futures in January is among the main reasons why this target is not far-fetched.  

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Andy Cheung: $20,000
Andy Cheung is yet another industry expert who believes that Bitcoin could match its current ATH of $20,000 the following year. Cheung calls it a ‘conservative’ future value prediction of Bitcoin. Moreover, he believes that Ethereum, one of the biggest losers of 2018, will shine even brighter after the upcoming hard fork.  

Notably, Kevin Murcko, CEO of CoinMetro, has also recently shared his $20,000 prediction if Bitcoin ETFs are eventually approved by the SEC.

Mitch Blakeway: $12,000
Just like Singh, Mitch Blakeway of Quantatex sees the launch of Bitcoin futures by Bakkt and NASDAQ will be the main catalyst for Bitcoin’s growth in 2019. With that being said, the price of Bitcoin could go up to $12,000, and crypto evangelists can expect it to grow even further in 2020 when the next Bitcoin halving occurs.  

Mike Novogratz: $10,000 in Q1 2019
In September, Mike Novogratz, the huge Bitcoin proponent from Wall Street, claimed that the coin would be able to crack $10,000 in Q1 2019 because of an influx of institutional money. Once there are more custodian solutions, Bitcoin will be eventually viewed as a store of value.  

Notably, Novogratz was ridiculed because of constantly trimming his short-term predictions for 2018 but he still believes that BTC could even reach $20,000.   

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Entering the bearish territory

Anthony Pompliano: $3,000 in Q3
It is quite strange to hear a disheartening price prediction from the permabull Anthony Pompliano. The head of Morgan Creek Digital Assets believes that the cryptocurrency market will remain in the doldrums until Q3 2019 with Bitcoin potentially finding the bottom below the $3,000 level. After that, the sky's the limit for Bitcoin – Pomp predicts that it could eventually breach the $50,000 mark in the nearest future.    

Bobby Lee: $2500 in Q1 2019
Bobby Lee, the brother of Fundstrat’s Tom Lee, who also happens to be the founder of China’s first exchange, BTCC, is certain that Bitcoin could bottom out as early as in Q1 2019 with its price tanking below the $2,500 level.

Arthur Hayes: bears will remain supreme in 2019
BitMEX CEO Arthur Hayes, who earlier thought that Bitcoin would be able to surpass the $50,000 mark this year, has recently done a U-turn. Now, Hayes doesn’t see Bitcoin recovering from the current predicament in 2019 with the BTC price falling below $2,000.

Peter Brandt: $1,200
Technical trading vet Peter Brandt also doesn’t see Bitcoin recovering in 2019 – his prediction stands at $1,200 if the price of Bitcoin drops below the psychologically important $3,000 mark (the flagship cryptocurrency was already on the cusp of doing this year).

At the same time, the possibility of Bitcoin skyrocketing above its current peak is also on the table, Brandt states. He emphasizes that he doesn’t want to be perceived as a Bitcoin hater.

Notably, Brandt accurately called the 80 drop in Bitcoin price back in January. If the price does drop to the level of $1,200, he is certain that even most ardent crypto enthusiasts will consider jumping ship.

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Is Bitcoin going to $0? Join the Bitcoin hater party

Calvin Ayre, the founder of Bitcoin Cash, is on the same wavelength with ‘Bitcoin Jesus’ Roger Ver, claiming that BCH will make its older brother completely irrelevant. Recently, Ayre voiced his bold prediction that the Bitcoin price will plunge to $0 in 2019 due to its low scalability. At the same time, he doesn’t think that the BSV fork participated in November’s market crash.

Shutterstock

Ironically, Erik Finman, teenager millionaire who made over $4 mln during Bitcoin’s peak, is also turning his back on Bitcoin, claiming that the top currency will be eventually replaced by Bitcoin Cash (BCH). Finman says that tons of infighting ‘killed’ Bitcoin.

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Speaking of doomsayers, one should also mention the notorious Bitcoin critic Nouriel Roubini who’s certain that Bitcoin will be worth null ‘in due time’. American stock broker Peter Shiff, who is particularly famous for predicting the housing market crash, is also certain that Bitcoin could tank to zero. Moreover, he recently shredded CNBC anchor Brian Kelly for shorting Bitcoin after his endless shilling.

What can push Bitcoin price in 2019?

  1. A spike in real-life adoption. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) admits that this year was a ‘tough’ year for Bitcoin but he expects more real applications of Bitcoin in 2018. However, that   could change in 2019 and eventually push the BTC price much higher. The adoption of xRapid by global banks is also expected to have a knock-on effect for Bitcoin.            

  2. Institutional investors coming on board. A lot of experts are in agreement with Mike Novogratz – 2019 will be the year of institutional money. The launch of Bakkt’s Bitcoin futures is, of course, one of the most anticipated events of early 2019 given that the launch of Bitcoin futures by CME, the largest futures exchange in the world, was one of the reasons behind the unprecedented spike. The baby steps of Fidelity, Yale, and other big-name players were already a precursor to what will happen next year.

  3. The US SEC giving green light to a Bitcoin ETF. One should bear in mind that the SEC postponed its decision on the much-anticipated Bitcoin ETF. The final decision is expected not earlier than in  February 2019, clarifying its so-far ‘rocky’ relationships with Bitcoin ETFs.

  4. Regaining dominance. Many smaller altcoins are crashing, and it’s a good opportunity for Bitcoin to regain its dominance (which is currently sitting at 53.1%). Bitcoin is shedding billions but the whole crypto market is in an even worse position with 70 percent of all ICOs failing to surpass their initial valuation. Global management consulting company A.T. Kearney predicts that Bitcoin will be controlling 2/3 of the whole cryptocurrency market.     

  5. Regulatory clarity. While the US remains the main market for Bitcoin, the country’s lawmakers have yet to bring more clarity to the table, which prevents large institutions from fully diving into crypto. 2018 was the year of a heated congressional hearing and the first crypto bills. Will there be a major shift in 2019?     

Bitcoin price predictions: then and now

The definition of a bullish Bitcoin price prediction has definitely changed since the historic bull run of 2017. In 2016, a $2,200 forecast for 2018 was considered to be ‘nice and bullish’ but any experts who would dare to voice these numbers today would automatically join the bear club.

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In all fairness, not everyone was super-rational about a Bitcoin price prediction even in the pre-ATH era. For instance, a Coindesk poll found out that 56 percent of Bitcoin enthusiasts were certain that Bitcoin would reach $10,000. Of course, Bitcoin naysayers were quick in I-told-you-so-ing but little did they know about what would happen to Bitcoin in just two years. The only difference is that this prediction was borderline crazy in 2014 while anything below the Bitcoin’s current ATH won’t even pass for bullish anymore.  

Getty Images

In 2013, the Winklevoss brothers also made a bold prediction that Bitcoin would be able to reach a whopping $40,000 but they didn’t specify the exact date. There have also been predictions that Bitcoin could even hit $1 mln. On the flip side, there have been numerous occasions when the price was predicted to plunge to zero. Actually, Bitcoin pessimists have already done that for more than 317 times but somehow the king of crypto always stays there. For instance, this infamous article was published in 2011 (!).  

Just to stay on the safe side, one can predict that the Bitcoin price could skyrocket to $1 mln or tank to $0.   

Time traveler from the future: Bitcoin will hit 100,000 in 2019

Now that we’ve covered the past predictions for Bitcoin, let’s get a bit desperate and recall the viral time traveling post on r/Bitcoin that was published in 2013. A random Reddit user claimed that he was typing his predictions straight from 2025. His price forecasts for 2015 and 2017 turned out to be more accurate than those of the CNBC experts (sorry, Tom Lee). The time traveler believes that Bitcoin will be able to breach the $100,000 milestone in 2019, making it the most bullish prediction on our list sans Fran Strajnar.

fool.com.au

Is it even worth making Bitcoin price predictions?

On Dec. 13, crypto bull Tom Lee said that he won’t make any Bitcoin-related forecasts. The Fundstrat CEO explains that the reason behind this decision is the inherent volatility of Bitcoin. Earlier, Lee predicted that the world’s largest crypto would reach $25,000 by the end of 2018. U.Today also recollects the most embarrassing Bitcoin price predictions of 2018:

Bitcoin price predictions

He later changed his prediction to $15,000 when Bitcoin entered the death spiral, but this figure is still a far cry from where Bitcoin stands today – $3,886 at press time.
  
While it may seem like Lee is throwing a temper tantrum, we cannot blame him – Bitcoin has a penchant for wild price fluctuations. Furthermore, the nascence of the crypto industry makes it very sensitive to the current news cycle (for instance, the announcement about Winklevoss' ETF rejection instantly made it to mainstream news outlets and tanked the Bitcoin price).

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However, bad (and frankly random price predictions) extend across the whole asset class. Gold, for instance, is only valued at $1,200, while many industry experts in the likes of Peter Schiff predicted that one ounce would be worth $5,000. 2018 also had many surprises for the stock market, with most analysts predicting that the S&P 500 would end up at 3,000 by the end of this year (at press time, it is standing at 2,416).

Bitcoin will hit 100,000 in 2019

Since most of these predictions do not translate into reality, the real question is why these forecasters even bother.

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Cryptocurrency of the Future: Which Coins are Likely to Survive?

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What is the cryptocurrency of the future? What will happen to crypto in the nearest years? Here are a few contenders to replace Bitcoin.
Cryptocurrency of the Future: Which Coins are Likely to Survive?
Contents

The last two years can be marked as the age of progress for cryptocurrencies: in summer 2018, there were over 2,000 altcoins present on the market. New cryptocurrencies continue popping up, but the vast majority of them are useless crap. A cryptocurrency can be highly popular today, and tomorrow it just explodes like a bubble leaving contributors with nothing.

Want to invest in something worthy and long-lasting? Then you should choose projects with innovative and promising blockchain solutions. Let’s find out what the cryptocurrency of the future is, and which coins should be considered for investing.

Ripple (XRP)

Ripple was invented as a means of low-cost international transfers. The cryptocurrency was launched in 2012 with creators stating that “Ripple enables banks to settle cross-border payments in real time, with end-to-end transparency, and at lower costs”. Ripple doesn’t require mining: the proprietary consensus ledger is used instead of proof of work. That differentiates Ripple from altcoins.

How do contributors earn tokens then? The team plans to distribute XRP “through business development deals, incentives to liquidity providers who offer tighter spreads for payments, and selling XRP to institutional buyers interested in investing in XRP.” This model has already proven to be successful, so Ripple has become one of the most well-established cryptocurrencies. It is set to revolutionize cross-border payments, and this mission is going well so far.

At the moment, Ripple is the world’s second cryptocurrency by market cap ($15 bln), and now it is worth $0.37.

ZCash

The creators of ZCash explain that their cryptocurrency is a safer version of Bitcoin. This decentralized and open-source blockchain appeared in 2016 and has quickly become popular. There are a few reasons for that:

  1. ZCash ensures privacy and transparency of transactions: the user is free to specify which transaction details can be visible for other system participants.
  2. ZCash provides an extra layer of privacy: while all transactions are published in the blockchain, details (sender, recipient, or sum) stay hidden.
  3. The transactions are encrypted with the help of zero-knowledge proof construction called a zk-SNARK developed by its team.

Today, ZCash is the world’s 20th cryptocurrency with $335 mln market cap. It costs about $60 per token.

Ethereum (ETH)

Being launched in 2015, Ethereum has become Bitcoin’s major rival. This is a decentralized platform that implements smart contracts and dApps to accelerate transactions, reduce the risk of fraud and downtime, and eliminate the need for control from a third party. Although the Ethereum blockchain is used to build applications, every platform can use its own cryptographic token.

Unlike Bitcoin, which mainly serves for storage and transactions, Ethereum provides users with a larger scope of possibilities. This cryptocurrency and blockchain behind it can be used to decentralize and codify almost any software, so investors are seeking opportunities to buy the crypto and reap advantages in the long run. Ethereum is here to stay: it has reached the 3rd place in cryptocurrencies rating, and now its market cap is $13 bln with one ETH = $128.

Most likely, Ethereum will stay successful
Possible Ethereum development scenarios

EOS

Although EOS was launched recently – in 2017 – it has quickly made its way to the top. The person behind it is Dan Larimer, the founder of Bitshares digital currency exchange as well as the blockchain-based social media platform Steemit. EOS’ ICO was the longest and most profitable in history: the company has broken a $4 bln crowdfunding record.

EOS uses a delegated proof-of-stake mechanism that makes the blockchain more scalable. Similar to an operating system, EOS.IO works like a blockchain network for the digital currency. There’s no mining mechanism to produce coins – that also makes EOS outstanding.

Instead, block producers are rewarded with EOS tokens based on the production rates. The EOS system leverages a complex system of rules to control the process, and this blockchain makes transactions more democratic and decentralized.

Today, EOS’ cap is $2.3 bln, and one token is worth $2.6.

Main EOS advantages
EOS is a unique cryptocurrency

NEO (NEO)

EOS is not the only threat to Ethereum. NEO is called the ‘Chinese Ethereum’ because its blockchain leverages similar blockchain. Its history started in 2014: back then, it was called AntShares, and was later renamed.

In 2017, NEO experienced groundbreaking growth: from the value of $0.16 per token it climbed to as high as $162 within one year. Thus, investors might have enjoyed ROI of 111,000$%. Why did NEO become so successful? First and foremost, it supports many existing programming languages, such as Go, Java, C++, and others. Besides, it is supported by the Chinese government, which is usually very strict about cryptocurrencies. The technology underlying NEO is said to level up the use of smart contracts, so this is a very perspective and promising cryptocurrency you should pay attention to.

Today, NEO is 18th largest crypto with $485 mln market cap, and one NEO = $7.4.

Monero (XMR)

Why did we include Monero on our list? This is a secure, private and untraceable crypto. This open-source cryptocurrency was created in 2014 and soon received attention from crypto enthusiasts and corporate investors. The development of Monero was totally driven by community and donations from crypto enthusiasts. This project puts a heavy focus on scalability and decentralization and ensures absolute privacy thanks to so-called “ring signatures” techniques. In this case, there is a group of cryptographic signatures including at least one real participant, but since they all appear valid, the real one cannot be isolated.

Thanks to unbeatable security mechanisms, Monero has gained contradictory reputation because people started linking it to criminal payments. Wherever it is being used, we can’t deny the fact that Monero has introduced exceptional technological advances in the cryptocurrency sphere.  

the smartest choice for private payments
Comparison of Monero vs other coins

What will the future of cryptocurrency be like?

When it comes to predictions, opinions of experts differ: while some believe that crypto will rise even higher, others express their concerns about the lack of real crypto value.

On the positive side

On the negative side

According to Roger Ver, “long-term the future is brighter than ever,” for cryptocurrencies. He noted that there’s “more awareness,” “more adoption,” and “more stuff happening all over the world.”

Blockchain and cryptocurrencies are not a panacea. There are still concerns over the scalability, speed of transactions, and their cost. Crypto has got a lot of challenges to overcome.

(Rowan Welch, account director, Black Pepper Software)

Many experts believe that Ripple will take over with all the institutional money flowing in.

One of the main reasons some people think crypto will fail is the lack of availability.

Some predict that all that crypto needs is a verified exchange traded fund (ETF). That would make investing in Bitcoin easier. But there should be demand for Bitcoin, which cannot be generated by a fund.

Proof of work should be replaced – it’s too energy-consuming, and the number of miners is critically high.

Tim Draper has predicted that the total cryptocurrency market capitalization will hit $80 trillion in the next 15 years.

Networks are handing their power to the miners, who are centralizing the crypto market in the same way central banks strangulated the traditional one.

All in all, cryptocurrency has all chances to replace fiat money. Maybe not in 5 years, but later. All you can do now is to keep the track of crypto development and make timely investments.

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