One of the newest cryptocurrencies on the market is Qtum. Pronounced like the word quantum, Qtum is envisioned as something of a hybrid between Bitcoin and Ethereum which are arguably the two most popular digital assets. Qtum made its appearance in March of 2017 and has worked to position itself as a good investment through transparency and the availability of information on the platform.
The History of Qtum
A crowdsale is the most common way new Altcoins are funded. The crowdsale for Qtum took place in March 2017 and approximately 51 million Qtum tokens were sold. The sale took place on six cryptocurrency exchanges, five of which were based in Asia. It is widely assumed that the great majority of investors were residents of Asian countries.
The crowdsale took about 117 hours to complete and raised about 14,000 Bitcoins. Since the introduction of the coin, Qtum has increased about 10% in Bitcoin value and roughly 30% in cash value. This was a strong showing for the first six months that the coin has been available.
Qtum has attracted the backing of some very important figures in the cryptocurrency community. These so-called whales include Roger Ver and Antony di Iorio. Large Chinese investors have also thrown their considerable weight behind the coin in its early days.
A positive aspect of Qtum has been the willingness of its developers to be transparent about the network. Expenditures of the project for its first four months were published and made available to the public. The main website also supplies Qtum White Papers which do a reasonably good job of explaining the platform as well as the function of the Qtum blockchain and how it differs from that of other cryptocurrency platforms.
Qtum combines the core infrastructure of Bitcoin with a version of the Ethereum Virtual Machine. This is designed to accomplish a merger between the reliability of the Bitcoin blockchain and the versatility of the smart contracts which are hallmarks of Ethereum. The goals of Qtum are stability, modularity, and interoperability. The hope is that the platform will provide real world business applications that solve real world problems. Businesses that use the platform can ultimately create their own digital tokens, automate processes like the management of a supply chain, and enable self-executing agreements.
Smart contracts in Qtum can be executed on mobile platforms, and users can store Qtum in lite wallets which are accessible from a wide variety of mobile devices. This is an important trend in the advancement of cryptocurrencies. Those who use them want to be able to manage transactions from mobile phone without sacrificing the security that comes from a hardware wallet.
It is possible to mine Qtum, but the process is complex and beyond the scope of the average cryptocurrency investor or enthusiast. Qtum functions on a Proof of Stake model as opposed to the Proof of Work mining reward system used by Bitcoin. Those who support Proof of Stake mining claim that it is more secure and presents less risk of an attack on the network.
In a Proof of Stake system miners are rewarded according to the amount of cryptocurrency they already hold. This creates some potential problems. Chief among these is a possibility that individuals who hold vast amounts of Qtum could monopolize mining. It is also necessary for the beginning miner to obtain expensive equipment to carry out the mining process. Mining also consumes a large number of resources and the actual cost of the process can be prohibitive for most people.
An alternative to mining Qtum can be to join a mining pool like the one offered by Genesis Mining. Individuals purchase mining shares or contracts from Genesis Mining and share the cost and rewards of mining Ethereum and Bitcoin. The company maintains mining farms in secure locations throughout the world and provides all of the maintenance that must be performed on the computer equipment. Participants have no involvement other than purchasing their hash power and reaping the rewards. They can also acquire additional hash power by referring others to the Genesis Mining service.
While it is not possible to mine Qtum at Genesis Mining, the Bitcoin and Ethereum that are mined can easily be exchanged for Qtum on a number of cryptocurrency exchanges.
Qtum Use and Acceptance
The developers of Qtum hope that the platform will ultimately be prized for its ability to provide businesses with a variety of useful applications. As of the present time, Qtum is not widely accepted as a form of digital payment. This could be a deterrent to some of those who are looking to obtain the currency.
Qtum does serve a purpose as an investment. Those who own the coin can trade it on the cryptocurrency exchanges against traditional fiat and other digital assets. Since its introduction, Qtum has experienced some slight growth. The cryptocurrency market, however, can be very volatile and should be approached with caution.