What is Ripple?
Ripple is a global settlement system, providing easy transfers of almost any currency to anywhere in the world in a few seconds. Their payment platform has a lot of advantages over the traditional payment methods such as SWIFT or Western Union. The main focus of their team are currently banks, they are offering a cheap and effective solution to send real-time payments across the globe.
For example, sending money from Japan to Egypt is currently a pretty expensive and time-consuming as JPY/EGP trading isn’t really on offer. A bank or a person has to firstly, trade JPY into USD and then USD to EGP. At each trade, there is a fee and the expenses add up quickly. Through Ripple, you can trade JPY for Ripple (XRP), paying a much lower fee, send XRP to the recipient with a Ripple wallet, whether it is a bank or an individual, and then trade XRP into EGP, again for a much lower fee.
Ripple acts as a way of a transfer that allows all the currencies to be traded for any other currency on their payment platform. Real-time worldwide payments are definitely the next step, even though the banks have been slow to adopt Ripple as a route of currency transfer.
All in all, ripple offers some real value to the banks in terms of cutting expenses and making their transactions faster, giving them a real competitive advantage. Their system is developed in a way that enables transferring the money as quickly as the movement of information in the current digital era.
Banks and Ripple
Banks that are using their system save an average of $3.76 per payment, according to Ripple. This adds up to a significant amount of money when considering the number of transactions that banks make on a daily basis. If there is something that attracts the banks is the proposition of saving money. Ripple is therefore on a good path to becoming a big successful company. It is based in San Francisco with offices all around the world. They are hiring some of the top international talents, aiming to cover the majority of international worldwide payments. Some of the banks that already use their protocol include Union Credit, Santander, Axis Ban, NBAD, and Westpac. All in all, Ripple is one of the most attractive Fintech organizations, they are also included in top 50 Fintech companies list by Forbes.
Only large investors can invest in the company directly. If you are not one of them you can still invest in Ripple’s cryptocurrency, XRP. In 2017 XRPs value grew from $0.01 to a whopping $2,20. Currently, it is evaluated at $0.67, having the third highest market cap behind only Bitcoin and Etherium. The combination of bank adoption and speculative interest are the main reasons behind last years price surge.
Enabling seamless transactions with almost no fees, XRP acts as a reserve currency that can be traded for any other currency. When a currency is exchanged into XRP, it increases its liquidity while raising the value of the currency due to greater demand. To summarize, the ripple is trying to make XRP a global reserve currency.
Currently, making your payment through XRP is the cheapest and most convenient way to transfer value from one currency to another. After a while, it might make sense to not move your money out of XRP anymore. If the majority of banks and individuals around the world decide that it is better to hold your value in XRP rather than in fiat, the evaluation of XRP would soar without a doubt. The main concern among banks right now is the instability of the XRP coin. As a result, one of Ripple’s main targets is ensuring that XRP becomes a more stable currency. As of right now, it’s evaluation can change dramatically in a short period of time. In order to solve some of the issues while offering a safer online wallet, Ripple has partnered with BitGo, a blockchain security company. Additionally to its payment service the team is offering consulting services to financial institutions while they are having no problem getting the funds when they need them, meaning they are likely to stay around for a long time.
Watch the video below what are the biggest Ripple investors:
How many XRP are there?
While the total supply consists of 100 billion tokens, Ripple has the majority of them, 61 billion. To establish a trustworthy relationship with the investors they locked up 55 billion of XRP using smart contracts. Every month there is a contract that expires and enables the usage of 1 billion XRP. Currently, they have spent around 300 million XRP monthly, to cover their expenses. They have a very transparent way of conducting their finance, so even the most skeptical of investors have little to worry about. If you are a person that invested in cryptocurrencies as a protest to the global banking monopoly you probably don’t want to invest in Ripple. However, their business model seems smart since they are working with the leading entities in the field, providing themselves with a good opportunity to grow and establish themselves in the global financial markets.
If you want to capitalize on their success, it would be a good idea to just buy XRP and forget about it for a while. It is very likely that the invested value grows significantly in the long run. Ripples transactions are confirmed in under 4 seconds and in terms of scalability, it has been shown that the system is able to handle more than 50,000 transactions a second, putting it on par with VISA.
Ripple Pros and Cons
When looking at XRP, you can put it in context by comparing it with the father of all cryptocurrencies, bitcoin. XRP is a lot faster than bitcoin when it comes to transaction speed. Even though the cost of sending bitcoin has dropped recently due to a second layer protocol called Lightning network, XRP transactions fees are still lower in comparison. Additionally, XRP network doesn’t get halted by transactions as much as bitcoin does. One of the goals of the platform was to avoid consuming large amounts of electricity. All of XRP were »instamined« in order to avoid the whole mining process. That is a handicap for anyone who prefers the proof of work system. It can also be argued that this makes the currency more centralized. However, the team is doing their best to make it more as decentralized as possible. They are achieving that through validator node diversity on the Ripple Consensus Ledger. Another benefit of Ripple would be the fact that they are cooperating with the very institutions that control the global financial markets. Banks are more likely to adopt ripple than any other currency that is seen more as a competitor to the traditional banking system.
Considering the drawbacks, it is worth noting some of the security vulnerabilities in the network. Purdue University research has concluded that nodes within the XRP network could be a subject to attack due to its open nature. That kind of attack would prevent some of the users to access their funds. Also, if you like the whole cryptocurrency system as an alternative to the global banking cartel you probably shouldn’t invest in ripple. However, if you are an investor who is looking for a profit and you don’t have any problems with their business plan, you should definitely consider investing in XRP.
A Step by Step Guide about How to Buy Ripple and The Specialties for UAE
Step 1 – Getting an XRP Wallet
Ripple wallets are mostly functioning in the same way as Bitcoin wallets. If you are not familiar with the concept you should read a more extensive wallet guide on http://buyripple.com/best-ripple-xrp-wallets/.
When you create a wallet you should write down your private key and keep it in a safe location. Even better, write it down multiple times and store it in several places. With your private key, you can access your wallet no matter what. If you want maximum security you would store your Ripples in a hardware wallet. Software wallets offer easier accessibility but are more prone to outside attacks. Exchange wallets are the riskiest as you don’t control your private keys when storing the currency on the exchange. Another thing to note is the fact that you always have to fund an initial 20 XRP when making a Ripple wallet due to low-level spam attack protection.
Of the hardware wallets, Ledger Nano S is one of the most reliable for storing Ripple. If you are considering a software wallet you can check the Toast wallet that is available in a mobile version (iOS, Android) and a desktop one (PC, Linux, Mac). Another one worth mentioning is Rippex, available for Mac Windows and Linux.
Step 2- Buying XRP on an Exchange
If you don’t already own Bitcoin, you should probably buy ripple in UAE with a credit card or through a wire transfer. You can do it on multiple exchanges. However, you will most likely have to go through a KYC process beforehand, which can take some time. There is a pretty simple and fastforwarded process to ket varified to buy ripple in uae
The most notable exchanges that accept fiat are CEX.io, Kraken, and Bitstamp. After completing your KYC you can send your funds through a SEPA or a bank transfer. After the transfer is confirmed, you can buy Ripple with fiat, directly on the exchange.
If you are not new in the cryptocurrency space and you own some Bitcoin, buying Ripple with Bitcoin could be the cheapest way to acquire the XRP currency. You can do that on all of the cryptocurrency exchanges that support XRP, and have an XRP/BTC pairing. Kraken, Bittrex, Binance are among most popular exchanges with an XRP/BTC pairing. You can learn how to buy bitcoin here
Step 3 – Withdrawing Ripple to Your Wallet
It is not advisable to leave the currency on the exchange. As it was previously mentioned, you are not in control of your private keys when having assets on the exchange, making it a risky way of storing your assets. Always store your coins on a wallet that has your own private key. After the transaction to your wallet is confirmed, you have successfully bought XRP.
Even though Ripple has a great upside potential, investing in the best cryptocurrency of 2018 always carries some significant risks. The markets are very volatile, so always invest only the money you are prepared to lose. As we always note, conduct your buying and trading in a responsible way.