Money has undergone different stages of development; from physical tokens such as shells, cowries and precious metals coins to the current banknotes. The evolution was mostly due to the need for a durable, portable and divisible currency with a limited supply.
Prior to 2009 when Satoshi Nakamoto invented the world's first digital currency, bitcoin, physical tokens had been the standard for payment, store of value and as a unit of account.
And since then, for the first time in human history, the transfer of money can be facilitated between two distant people without the need for an intermediary, like the banks.
In this article, we are going to explain the benefits of cryptocurrencies and answer the famous question— why do we still need cryptocurrency? But before we go into that, let's deal with some of your scepticism.
How Crypto Was Invented and why
Bitcoin was created in 2009 by a person or group of people using the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, the name which appeared on the original 2008 Bitcoin white paper that first described the blockchain system that has served as the backbone of the entire cryptocurrency market.
Unlike banknotes, Bitcoin is neither issued by a central bank nor backed by any government. Bitcoin is based on a blockchain, which is a digitally distributed ledger. Blockchain is a system of recording information in a way that makes it difficult or impossible to change, hack, or cheat the system. A blockchain is essentially a digital ledger of transactions that is duplicated and distributed across the entire network of computer systems on the blockchain.
For a detailed explanation, read VIBRA’s article What is Bitcoin: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide
Now, why was Bitcoin created? Although Nakamoto remains an unidentifiable figure, his reasons for creating cryptocurrency were never a mystery. Simply put, he created it to take financial control back from financial elites, and to give ordinary people a chance to take part in a decentralized financial system.
What Crypto Does exactly
Cryptocurrency is a digital payment system that doesn't rely on third parties to verify transactions. It's a peer-to-peer system that can enable anyone anywhere to send and receive payments.
Cryptocurrency has evolved to something much more than that. As the digital asset is gaining more traction, more genius minds keep flooding the industry and inventing diverse use cases for the asset class. Now, cryptocurrency performs banking activities— termed DeFi (decentralised finance), non fungible tokens (NFTs), governance, automobile etc.
Do We Still Need Crypto?
Cryptocurrency offers numerous incentives for business owners worldwide. Instead of exclusively focusing on domestic markets, it has made it easier for entrepreneurs to access global markets. This has been excellent for developing countries as it has allowed sellers to build relationships and nurture trust with markets that have never before been available.
Because of this and its ever-evolving use cases, crypto is still a thing and it will always be a thing.
Africa Needs 4IR and Crypto
Advancement in technologies based on the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) has ushered in numerous technologies such as cloud computing, robotic technology, blockchain, artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, among others.
Africa needs to sync with other parts of the world in embracing new technologies. The internet, in itself, is a global village that connects everyone regardless of racial identity and continent. If Africa wants to be a part of this unified world, it needs to identify with most of its features and crypto is one of them.
The history of cryptocurrency isn’t long, but it’s arguably one of the most fascinating stories of the 21st century. But there are still some serious barriers to entry into the cryptocurrency market. Education is the easiest and fastest way to get empowered by Crypto and that is why VIBRA created a platform where knowledge is paramount. And our commitment to providing high-quality and easy-to-use resources for both newbies and seasoned professionals will continue until all of Africa is informed.