So You Want To Know About Bitcoin - Step 1 - Wallets
You’ve heard about this amazing new technology called Bitcoin and now you need a Bitcoin wallet. Bitspark is here to save the day with a complete guide to getting your very own Bitcoin wallet and how to best start your crypto-currency journey easily and securely. Okay, ready? Let’s go!
End of the Day, Bitcoin Does It Better!
Having a Bitcoin wallet to store money is a beautiful thing and here are some quick reasons why.
1) You are the bank. No more waiting in lines, asking for approvals, waiting days for a transfer.I feel less stressed already!
2) It’s free. Yep, there are many options out there and all are free!
3) Your wallet can store your Bitcoin on a computer, smartphone, a paper wallet or go old school and memorise it!
4) Your Bitcoin wallet is private, secure and will never discriminate against you whether your poor, rich, or have three eyes.
5) You know exactly where your money is, how much is in there and what it’s used for.
That’s only the tip of the iceberg, but if you want to know more, ask us on Facebook or Twitter #BitsparkBTC and we’ll answer them!
First Things First… Learn The Lingo
‘Wallet’ : Think of it as a normal wallet except its lighter because it’s online and you don’t have to deal with notes and coins as it will be digital cash in the form of Bitcoins.
‘Bitcoin Address’ (public key) : Your wallet is identified as an unique ‘address’ which typically looks something like this ‘1J98tlWpEZ73CNmQviecrnyiWrnqRhWNLy’.
Private Key : Corresponding to every wallet there is a private ‘key’ which works like any other password. It allows the owner of the wallet to send their bitcoins to whoever and whenever they want through their bitcoin wallet and access to the wallet is only permitted by individuals in know of the Private Key.
It Works Like This
Scenario 1 : James wants to send Bitcoin to Jess for buying him a coffee yesterday.
James would simply open his Bitcoin Wallet App on his smartphone, scan Jess’ Bitcoin address in the form of a QR code, nominate how many Bitcoins he would like to send her and press send! While different Bitcoin wallets have different functions to send Bitcoins, over all, it’s a smooth, easy and direct process.
Once James presses send it will automatically be sent to Jess’ wallet in a few minutes no matter where she is in the world, the time or day, or the amount for no fees!
Did you know : The largest Bitcoin transaction to date was about 194,993 BTC which at the at the BTC price in Nov 2013 amounted to USD$160 Mil? This transaction took 10 minutues to transfer and can be seen in plain site on the BlockChain.
Scenario 2: David wants to buy online an awesome T-shirt from MixedTees or some merch from BTCTrinkets online.
(David is incredibly skilled in tightroping and online shopping simultaneously)
All David has to do is login to the company website, scan the companies QR code which the merchant will generate for you and then press send. That’s it!
Scenario 3: Marco wants to buy his lady friend flowers from Flower Delivery Hong Kong.
A merchant store which accepts Bitcoin most likely will have this sign in their store.
All Marco has to do is order his lady friend her favourite flowers at the cashier, go into his Bitcoin Wallet App, nominate 0.137 BTC (500 HKD), scan the code generated by Flower Delivery Hong Kong and press send!
Check out this Coinmap to find more places to spend your first BTCs all over the world!
Awesome! But where do I get one?
We could go on and on but this is only meant to be a quick guide to get you started. If you would like to know more about Bitcoin wallets, where you should get one, what type, which provider then check out Bitcoin.org’s comprehensive guide on Choosing Your Wallet.
As with anything, make sure to do your research before using Bitcoin to familiarise yourself and be secure. It is your money after all :)
Happy Bitcoining and don’t forget that the Bitspark Team is always here to answer your questions via Facebook or Twitter #BitsparkBTC!