Is Bitcoin the currency of the future?
The virtual cash gained massive popularity in 2013, especially when economic crises in the European Union forced citizens to seek safer forms of monetary holdings other than their bank deposits or their nation's official currency.
Global Cash Transfers
Bitcoin can be used to make cash transfers anywhere in the world, and requires only an electronic device with access to the Internet. Transactions can be completed in one hour.
Many of today's citizens who make online transactions are global travelers and merchants. Thus, the marketplace has a big need for virtual cash that can easily facilitate payments between parties no matter where they are located.
Traditional payment systems, with built-in firewalls by governments and financial institutions, often make it challenging to wire funds to certain areas of the world, such as some countries in Africa, Europe, Asia, and South America.
Such firewalls have spawned abusive practices in the form of expensive bank charges and taxes. Bitcoin enables entrepreneurship to thrive by circumventing the very institutions that stifle it.
Bitcoin offers relatively large savings due to the absence of charges, hidden fees, and taxation -- all which significantly add up in the long-term.
Traditional forms of currency enjoy the strong protection of alarm systems, bank vaults, and armed guards. In the future, Bitcoin could serve as a personal Swiss Bank account for the everyday consumer, where funds are stashed beyond the reach of outside parties (so long as criminal activities aren't involved).
Universal Payment System
The e-currency could in the future serve as the backbone for a universal payment system. Different currencies and varying exchange rates (such as U.S. dollars, Euros, Japanese Yen, etc.) are magnifying the inefficiencies of a marketplace which lack standardization.
Due to America's economic decline, citizens, merchants, and investors may perceive the dollar as an inappropriate currency standard over the long haul. And Bitcoin has the potential to fill a huge void.
However, Bitcoin's infrastructure still need better record-keeping and documentation to provide greater assurance for users. Secondly, the ecosystem surrounding Bitcoin (such as exchanges, investing platforms, software, ATMs, and payment systems) would need to be secure, reliable, and immune from sophisticated hacking.