Note: This is a guest post contributor
2017 is the year that, arguably, cryptocurrencies outgrew the niche status to become a force that the public and businesses now reckon with. It is no secret that digital currencies such as Bitcoin are probably going to affect almost every industry. This disruption is mostly attributed to the convenience that comes with a decentralized money system that Bitcoin brings. Talk of privacy, security, fast and cost-effective transactions, immutability, and transparency.
Currently, there are well over 2,000 cryptocurrencies listed on CoinMarketCap, with a total market capitalization of more than $200 billion. Bitcoin, the very first cryptocurrency, is still the most dominant (54% dominance) and has a market cap of over $109 billion.
These numbers prove that more and more people are opening up to the idea of cryptos. According to the infographic below created by BitFortune, many governments, businesses, and non-profits are emerging across a variety of industries with ideas that threaten to disrupt the status quo of various markets and industries totally.
So, what exactly can you do with Bitcoin or your knowledge of it? Stay tuned.
The first and most obvious way of using Bitcoin is to buy goods and services. Here are a few of the popular things that are already exchanging for cryptos:
- Fast foods: Subway is accepting cryptocurrencies as a form of payment. In the Czech Republic, there is a company called Bitcoin Coffee: you can guess what form of currency is exclusive. Another company – Pizzaforcoins – accepts about 50 different crypto coins. The Burger King branch in Arnhem, Netherlands, lets you pay for your burgers in Bitcoin. Depending on your location, there are numerous other fast food companies that take cryptos.
- Travel: If you ever have to travel by air, cheapair.com lets you book flights, hotels, cruises, and rent cars by using Bitcoin. Expedia is a popular online travel booking agency that has the same option.
- Real estate: Propy.com and MyCONrealty.com are a few examples of realtors that sell properties for Bitcoin. A Villa in Bali, Indonesia, once went to an anonymous buyer for $600,000, which was equivalent to about 1,000 Bitcoin.
- Education: Education institutions are not left out of the thrill of cryptocurrencies. Universities in Cyprus, USA, Switzerland, and Germany are now accepting fees in the form of Bitcoin. One example is the Swiss vocational science and art school Lucerne University, which started accepting Bitcoin in October 2017 through Bitcoin Suisse AG, a payment processing firm.
- Buy cars: Just this year, Post Oak Motor Cars became the first luxury vehicle retailer to make cars (Bugatti, Rolls Royce, and Bentley) available for purchase with cryptos in the US. Going a little further back in time, in December 2013, a Tesla model S sold at 91.4 bitcoins. A Lamborghini Gallardo LP 550-2 Coupe too was later bought for an astounding 216.8 bitcoins in 2014.
- Retail: Cryptocurrencies found their way into the retail industry a long time ago. For one, Overstock, an online shopping platform, lets you pay for goods in bitcoins.
- Buy a coffin: that’s right – if you are ever around St Paul, Minnesota, feel free to stop by Crescent Tide Funeral and Cremation home where you can pay for your coffin as well as other related services in Bitcoin and even get a discount!
- Plastic surgery: In Manhattan, bodySCULPT lets people pay for new looks with their Bitcoin fortune. And, if you don’t come from around New York, you could still pay for the flight in BTC and breeze down there.
This is but a portion of the list of things you can pay for in Bitcoin. There are many other companies accepting BTC, and the options keep expanding as more people continue to learn about digital currencies and accept them.
Recruitment And Salaries
A lot of companies around the world started paying their staff using cryptocurrencies last year. For instance, Victvs, a firm based in Leeds, UK, allows its staff to choose to get paid in Bitcoin. Although this may not appeal to most employees around the globe, such inclination toward adopting cryptos as salary demonstrates a genuine understanding and interest in growing the sector.
What’s more, blockchain is being explored for the possibility of establishing a recruitment process through ‘Intelligent Profiles.’ These profiles are essentially blockchain-verified CVs that ensure every detail of a candidate’s professional and educational background is available in the blockchain and verified by relevant authorities. By extension, this shows that the payment of salaries in cryptocurrencies is only getting started.
Many companies now either have a standing blockchain team or job openings for personnel who can develop and maintain software. But you’ll be surprised; even bankers do not fully understand cryptocurrencies, and especially not the concepts of blockchain technology. The tech is advancing way faster than individuals can learn.
Cryptocurrencies and their underlying blockchain technology have introduced a unique kind of diversification across industries and with numerous opportunities to make a career or switch jobs. And, as more businesses begin to accept Bitcoin, the demand for experts in the field will only go up.
Many well-wishers today are discouraged due to the pervasive corruption in charity organizations. If well-wisher’s funds keep declining, some people who genuinely need help could end up suffering.
The good news is that blockchain disruptions and cryptos have the potential to reduce, if not prevent, fund leaks in charities. WFP is one example of a global organization that is already using the blockchain technology to distribute funds to the hungry around the world strategically.
Evidently, the real world uses of Bitcoin can only be limited by your imagination. More and more applications are coming to life as more people continue to understand and popularize digital currencies. It is not very hard to be convinced that digital currencies are going to be the standard in the future and that blockchain will completely transform the way we conduct transactions and businesses everywhere.
Perhaps the only thing deterring the revolution is a lack of understanding and the fact that cryptos are still very volatile, making it harder for interested parties to convert much of their fortune into bitcoins.