By Mary Ann Callahan
New York – Since its inception in August 2017 in the wake of the fork, Bitcoin Cash has gained momentum in popularity. With a market cap of nearly USD 17.3 billion, the cryptocurrency is rising steadily. The BCH price reached an all-time high of around USD 4,000 in December 2017 but has come down to USD 1,000 as of May 30.
There are many triggers for such meteoric rises and falls of BCH. Market predictions indicate Bitcoin Cash has decent investment potential. Why, where and how can investors buy BCH safely?
Formed as a spin off from the original Bitcoin (BTC) in 2017, Bitcoin Cash eliminated the drawbacks in BTC, like its scalability, which resulted in slower and more expensive transactions. Because of the decentralized format of the BTC network, the cryptocurrency faced several barriers to increasing its block size.
This resulted in a historical fork in the road, leading to the launch of BCH. BCH sped up transactions by increasing the size of the blocks to 8 MB initially and 32 MB in 2018.
Key differences between BCH and BTC
The key difference between BTC and BCH is the size of individual blocks. While BTC has a block size limit of 1 MB, it first increased to 8 MB and was further extended to 32MB. The larger block leads to easier mining capability for BCH.
BCH transactions are faster, cheaper, and smoother than those of BTC. Thus Bitcoin Cash is a more efficient cryptocurrency for customers who want to move, sell, or buy funds. In short, it is functional while Bitcoin is more collectible.
Another important difference between the two is that the mining difficulty varies based on the number of miners mining the cryptocurrency. A large number of miners mining Bitcoin Cash will be paid a lower amount as opposed to fewer miners doing the same work who will be paid higher. This mechanism keeps inflationary forces in check and lowers transaction fees while the processing times are faster.
Thus BCH has potential for scalability and adaptability, fueling interest in Bitcoin Cash and increasing its prices. Because the Bitcoin Cash community aims to make it reliable, scalable, and with minimal transaction fees through protocol upgrades, its future prospects as an investment seem bright.
How to buy BCH
Now that you have seen the inherent value of BCH and may wish to purchase it, below are some of the ways you can do so:
If you own other cryptocurrencies or even Bitcoin, there are many services which allow you to trade BCH instantly with cryptocurrencies. Purchasing the cryptocurrencies supported by these services in fiat currency, such as USD, is also possible.
Credit and debit cards
With BCH, several exchanges permit payments via credit cards, PayPal, or debit cards. These options are possible only with a few platforms, but the entire process takes minutes.
You can buy Bitcoin Cash with cash via peer-to-peer marketplaces. You place an order and can even make use of escrow services. Ensure that you deal with a reputable platform and steer clear of fraudulent or scam sites. You should check certain factors before you choose this option:
- Make sure the rate of exchange is similar to market value
- Ensure the address of the wallet is correct
- Never disclose the private key address you own
Wire transfers or bank deposits
Some exchanges allow wire transfers for depositing money to purchase Bitcoin Cash. This system is slower than the rest and might sometimes take up to several days.
Top 3 Cryptocurrency Exchanges for purchasing BCH
While deciding on cryptocurrency exchanges, make sure you use reliable sites. Below are the top 3 exchanges you should consider:
This reputable exchange has several years of experience in cryptocurrency and was among the first to introduce BCH. CEX.IO accepts multiple payment methods for purchasing Bitcoin Cash: cryptocurrencies, wire transfers (SEPA/SWIFT allowed), credit cards, or debit cards. The exchange supports GBP, USD, and EUR.
- Competitive exchange rates
- Accepts multiple modes of payment
- Transparent fees
- No security breaches reported yet
- Delays in verification
- Payments via credit cards and wire transfers restricted for some countries
Coinbase has over 13 million customers, so it can rightly be called one of the largest exchanges. Coinbase was not the pioneer exchange listing Bitcoin Cash after the fork, but it was added to the platform in December 2017. Users can benefit from the following payment methods: bank account, credit card, or debit card.
- Quick transfer process via bank
- Multiple payment modes accepted
- Deposits safe
- Higher transaction charges
- Limited range of fiat currencies accepted
This exchange has a long-standing reputation, operating since 2011. On Kraken, BCH can be traded against BTC, USD and EUR. Fiat deposits are made through bank transfers with SEPA and SWIFT enabled. Unlike CEX.IO and Coinbase, Kraken supports a large number of altcoins along with Bitcoin Cash.
- Reasonable fees
- Prompt BCH transaction process
- Advanced security features
- Different verification levels available
- Only bank transfers accepted
- Exchange interface not user-friendly
- Lengthy verification process.
Bitcoin Cash is still evolving, building on its strengths and gearing up to face new challenges put forth by other emerging altcoins. While it is comparatively advantageous over Bitcoin in terms of cheap and fast transactions, the investment potential of the cryptocurrency depends on its future performance.
In general, the cryptocurrency market is a highly volatile one. With more regulation and speculation dominating the market, it is up to individual preference whether BCH is a viable alternative currency.