What Is Crypto? An Ultimate Guide

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1 out of 5 American adults has invested in or traded cryptocurrency. 

With numbers like that, there’s no way you’ve avoided hearing about cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin or Ethereum. But as much as people talk about crypto online or in the news, many still wonder, “What is crypto?”

It’s a concept that’s a bit complicated at first to explain, but it makes more and more sense as you dive into the crypto universe. So if you aren’t sure where to start when exploring, let us lead the way. Below is a quick introduction to cryptocurrencies. We promise to keep it simple. 

So, What Is Crypto?

In the simplest explanation, cryptocurrency is a digital currency backed up and secured by blockchain technology. We know that might sound like a foreign language to some of you, so we’ll break it down!

A blockchain is a chain of connected blocks. Inside each of these blocks lie transactions. For example, these transactions might include someone buying, trading, or selling cryptocurrency. 

While these aren’t physical blocks you can touch and move around, they exist in a virtual space and are accessible by other crypto investors. Furthermore, these transactions are tracked and verified by others on the blockchain. 

Don’t panic when we mention you can trace these transactions. Your name and banking information are not on blockchains!

The Benefits of Cryptocurrency 

You might not be asking, “What is cryptocurrency?” anymore, but there’s a good chance you’re wondering, “Why bother?”

There are several benefits to cryptocurrency and blockchain technology, let’s dig into that now.

What is crypto? Fact check.  Man of color with aviator glasses, researches further on his laptop.

It’s Decentralized

Having a secure bank account is useful. Our credit and debit cards allow us to buy groceries, gas, and other things we need in our daily lives. But, many people have a lingering fear about placing so much money in the hands of an institution. 

Luckily, cryptocurrency is a decentralized type of currency. It’s not connected to a government body or ruling institution. It exists in its own separate world. 

It’s Secure

Because it’s decentralized, many people view cryptocurrency as a safer, more secure currency option. 

It’s much more difficult to forge and mess with transactions on a blockchain than it is to steal someone’s credit card information. As we mentioned above, transactions on a blockchain are verified and tracked by others on the blockchain. 

It’s hard to pull a swift one on a blockchain!

It Diversifies Your Portfolio

Are you interested in building your investment portfolio? Luckily for you, cryptocurrency helps with that. 

You should probably avoid placing all your eggs in one basket when investing. The nature of cryptocurrency is volatile, much like stocks. 

Many experts advise investing in a few types of cryptocurrency. This way, if the value of one falls, you might still have luck with the others. Others may urge you to stick with the most popular cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin and Ethereum. 

How to Buy Crypto

Ready to dive into the world of cryptocurrency yourself? Consider buying cryptocurrency. 

To start buying, select a broker, Bitcoin ATM, or cryptocurrency exchange you trust. Popular exchange platforms include Coinbase and Gemini. Byte Federal Bitcoin ATMs offer variety, security, and the highest daily limits, for hassle-free, in-person crypto purchases and more. ByteWallet also offers in-app cryptocurrency transactions, supporting select cryptocurrencies for purchase and sale, and crypto-first banking. Review your options before making your final selection to find which platform best suits your needs.

Stay Informed

We guess there’s no better time to tell you that there ARE scams and questionable exchange platforms on the internet. Be cautious of “new and exciting” platforms mentioned on social media sites such as Twitter. Always do your research!

Crypto Exchange vs. Brokers

A crypto exchange is an online platform where one can interact with buyers and sellers.

Exchange platforms are often less expensive to use than brokers, but they’re more complicated. As a result, they may not be the best option for beginners who still have many questions. 

Brokers, on the other hand, can handle the complicated parts for you. They create user-friendly interfaces that lead you to exchanges. However, brokers are a tad more expensive and have more restrictions than an exchange platform would. 

Crypto ATM vs. Cryptocurrency Exchange

While crypto exchanges and brokers are a tried and true way to trade in Bitcoin and other trusted cryptocurrencies, they are no longer the only option available. Crypto ATMs are a secure, convenient, and accessible alternative that makes sense for most investors and enthusiasts.

ByteFederal has Bitcoin ATMs located all across the nation so that you can easily access the advantages of cryptocurrency. Our experts are happy to help you find one of these ATMs and answer any remaining questions about using our secure machines. Contact us to learn more about this easy way to invest!

There’s no right or wrong answer! So instead, choose which option best suits your investment style. 

Hold Up, What Is Crypto Mining? 

There’s a good chance you’ll see stuff about cryptocurrency mining during your online research. For example, you might imagine miners heading into a deep cave, hoping to uncover hidden jewels. 

As thrilling as that imagery is, it’s not the reality of the situation. Cryptocurrency mining is a much different thing!

Mining, in this instance, refers to how new cryptocurrency is verified and activated on a blockchain. Think of it as someone solving a very complicated math problem. The miner must work through equations in the blockchain, and once they reach the correct answer, they’re eligible to receive a major cryptocurrency reward to boost their wallet. 

Here’s the catch: Thousands of other people are also trying to solve these math problems. And solving these math problems requires huge amounts of computing power and electrical energy. 

There are literally cryptocurrency mining operation plants because of how much computing power it can take to reap substantial rewards. It’s an intense math competition. 

Stepping Into the World of Cryptocurrency 

If we had a Bitcoin for every time we heard the question, “What is crypto?” we would be sitting in a digital pool of wealth. We hope we have helped in answering this question for you!

Cryptocurrency seems like an overly complicated, intimidating world. Pay no mind to the internet’s oddly aggressive ‘crypto bros’. It’s an exciting world for anyone to be a part of!

do you even crypto bro? byte federal shopify

For more information on cryptocurrency, check out the rest of the resources on our site. You can even use our site to start hosting your own Bitcoin ATM!

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Jennifer Lawrence, the effervescent Creative Director of New Bytes, brings a fresh and innovative perspective to the crypto-focused publication. Hailing from the vibrant city of Austin, Texas, Jenny's intrigue in the intersection of design, technology, and finance was sparked during her time studying at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD).

Jenny's commitment to clarity through design, her comprehensive understanding of the crypto universe, and her passion for making information aesthetically accessible contribute immensely to Cryptosphere's appeal and its engagement with a broad audience.