The digital currency wave seems to have pushed ahead of its cryptocurrency opponents, primarily because it is associated with key institutions, and hence has a stamp of practicality and legitimacy.
But cryptocurrency enthusiasts claim that centralization shouldn’t be the goal of digital currency technologies. According to ShapeShift CEO, Erik Voorhees, the ripple is rising quickly because it is essentially a bubble. Voorhees is a bitcoin advocate and sees it as a means of separating the state and money. He says that it is ridiculous to test cryptocurrency with financial institutions like banks. This is because the reason why the concept of cryptocurrency has developed is to avoid banks.
Ripple is the official name given to a 5-year old San-Francisco-based startup which is working to develop a payment channel for various financial institutions. Participants can use a coin named ‘XRP’ for completing transactions. In October, the company made an announcement that over a hundred financial institutions have been utilizing its channel in different ways. These include Credit Agricole, SEB, and Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ.
A bank named ‘Cuallix’ was the first one to utilize XRP for Mexico-U.S. transactions. The main offices of the bank are located in Mexico, Hong Kong, and the United States.
Ripple announced in November that Santander and American Express FX International Payments would be using its network for multiple cross-border transactions between the U.K and the U.S. The company’s systems are also being tested by various South Korean and Japanese banks for the same purposes. If things go as per plan, the banks may ultimately decide to use XRP for transferring money.
According to blockchain analyst and software engineer, Dan Ciotoli, several retail investors believe that an XRP investment would give them business ownership to some extent. However, it is important to understand that they aren’t stocks.
Like all the other emerging bitcoin alternatives, XRP promises to offer faster processing speeds as compared to bitcoin, the first ever blockchain technology application that was introduced 9 years ago. It takes a minimum of an hour for bitcoin transactions to be settled. Ethereum, on the other hand, takes a little over two minutes, while XRP takes approximately four seconds.
While these are a lot quicker than conventional systems, a few Fintech companies like TransferWise are already allowing customers to make overseas money transfers cheaper and quicker than all traditional systems.