This week’s summary of various cryptocurrency news and developments:
Bitcoiners created a petition asking Amazon to accept bitcoin and litecoin payments
A new petition on Change.org is asking Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos to start accepting both bitcoin and litecoin payments on the online marketplace, stating that Amazon’s customers would benefit from the move. Low transaction costs, low inflation, non-reversible payments, and the security of these currencies would help the marketplace and its customers have a better online shopping experience. At press time, the petition has 4,815 backers.
The petition inspired Barry Silbert, Digital Currency Group (DCG) founder and CEO, to create a Twitter poll to see which one of four major internet companies would be the first to embrace cryptocurrencies, according to his users’ opinions. Out of Amazon, Alibaba, Facebook and Google, Alibaba won with 52% of the votes. If these companies do start accepting bitcoin, they would be joining the likes of Microsoft and Overstock.
Who will be the first to embrace digital currency?
— Barry Silbert (@barrysilbert) June 21, 2017
The number of unconfirmed bitcoin transaction significantly went down
The number of unconfirmed bitcoin transaction reached a whopping 200,000 earlier this year but this month things have been improving for the cryptocurrency. At press time, the number of unconfirmed bitcoin transactions, according to Blockchain.info, is only of about 12,950. As a result, transaction fees also dropped. These had previously reached an all-time high of over $2, and now Blockchain’s fee estimator has been recommending fees of about $0.19, with an expected confirmation time of one hour. According to CoinTelegraph, a large number of unconfirmed transactions were spam transactions meant to clog the network, and have now stopped due to the expected activation of Segregated Witness (SegWit)-
Charlie Shrem even used Twitter to reveal that he sent $2,000 in Bitcoin and only paid a $0.25 fee for the transaction, which was confirmed in only 6 minutes.
— Charlie Shrem (@CharlieShrem) June 29, 2017
Wall Street Billionaire says cryptocurrencies could reach $5 trillion in only 5 years
Billionaire Mike Novogratz, who in the past stated he had 10% of his wealth in bitcoin and Ether, told Bloomberg that cryptocurrencies could be worth $5 trillion in only 5 years, if the industry manages to come out of the shadows and gain better reputation. Notably, the billionaire investor compared it to Nasdaq in 1999, he said:
- The Nasdaq got to $5.4 trillion in 1999, why couldn’t it be as big There’s so much human capital and real money being poured into the space and we’re at the takeoff point.”
Mike Novogratz also stated that he recently took profits out of his cryptocurrency investments but still maintains 10% of his net worth in the industry, now with some assets bought from ICO’s, according to reports. He is also looking to purchase more Ether, if its price falls to anywhere between $150-$200.
Fidelity Charitable revealed that bitcoiners donated $9 million in only six months
According to an annual report published by Fidelity Charitable, Fidelity Investments’ public charity arm, in the first six months of 2017 bitcoin donors donated $9 million in the first six months of this 2017. In 2016, bitcoiners had donated $7 million throughout the year, making 2017 a record-breaking year, even though we’re only now entering July. The report also stated that a total of “nearly $2 billion” have been donated in these six months, meaning this year might surpass 2016’s $3.5 billion in donations.
The People’s Bank of China (PBoC) is testing a national digital currency
According to MIT’s Technology Review, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), China’s central bank, is now testing its own national digital currency with mock transaction between it and commercial banks in the country. According to the publication, a national digital currency would have far-reaching implications, as it would lower transaction costs, and allow the unbanked in the country to have access to financial services, while reducing fraud and increasing transparency.
Moreover, it would give Chinese policymakers real-time economic insights, which would help them make important decisions. PBoC wants to integrate the digital currency into its existing banking system, by having commercial banks operate digital wallets on its behalf, therefore stopping people from bypassing these and having wallets directly with the country’s central bank.
Vietnamese government confirmed OneCoin’s license is forged
According to various reports, OneCoin operators recently showed off a document in a communal event in Vietnam, claiming it was a license to legally operate in the country. The document was signed, and had the Depart of Management’s seal of approval. OneCoin promoters then started celebrating that Vietnam was the first country in Asia to approve of the cryptocurrency. Now, according to popular scam-informant website BehindMLM, the Vietnamese government has rebuked the organization’s claims, after receiving queries about the document. According to the government, the document is forged, and even the signatures in it are fake.
Russian parliamentarian says the country needs to start discussing the legalization of cryptocurrencies
According to RT, Russian parliamentarian Vadim Dengin recently stated that roundtable discussions and parliamentary hearings on digital currencies are to be held in the country, adding that bitcoin is likely to become accepted throughout the world. According to reports, Vadim Dengin believes there isn’t a need to legalize digital currencies in Russia, at least for now, but believes it is time to think about the issue:
- Sooner or later, with the verification of users, we may probably even have bitcoin exchange offices… Such operations will also be possible via the internet, for example, if you are in the office or on the street
Bitcoin at $2,509.91 after a week of various ups and downs
According to data from CoinMarketCap, Bitcoin started off the week at around $2,750 per coin, and went down to a low of $2,330 on June 27. At press time, according to the same source, one Bitcoin is currently worth $2,509.91, while the cryptocurrency’s total market cap is at $41.24 billion. Bitcoin’s dominance is at 41.2%.
Ethereum’s Ether token is currently worth $290.24
Last week, DeepDotWeb reported that Ether prices fell to $0.10 on GDAX, Coinbase’s exchange, and that the company was to restore user funds lost in the process. Ethereum prices were also affected by a huge transaction backlog last week due to an ICO. At press time, one Ether token is currently worth $290.24, while Ethereum’s total market cap is at $25.97 billion. The drop in prices led several cryptocurrency enthusiasts to believe that The Flippening, the scenario in which Ethereum surpasses Bitcoin and becomes the number one cryptocurrency, is still far from happening.