4 How do I obtain Cryptocurrency?
There are a number of ways to obtain cryptocurrency. This chapter will exemplify how an individual in the United Kingdom would obatin Bitcoin.
By far the easiest method to obtain cryptocurrency is by going through an online exchange. Exchanges essentially allow individuals to exchange fiat currency such as Great British Pounds or US Dollars into Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. Some Exchanges also allow individuals to exchange cryptocurrencies for other cryptocurrencies. For instance, Trading the most popular cryptocurrency Bitcoin for the second most popular cryptocurrency Ethereum.
There are currently 130 Cryptocurrency Exchanges on the World Wide Web. If we look at trades by minute the US based Coinbase exchange processed the most trades by minute (22% of total cryptocurrency trades per minute). CEX an exchange based in London has made the top ten with 3% of trade made per minute going being processed with its services.
4.2 Bitcoin ATMs
A popular yet less common alternative to buying cryptocurrency is through designated cryptocurrency automatic teller machines (ATMs). There are a total of 103 cryptocurrency ATMS in the United Kingdom.77 ATMS of which are in London, 6 in Birmingham 20 in other cities with just a few ATMS each.
4.3 Bitcoin Meetups
Another way to get hold of cryptocurrency is to go to meetups where cryptocurrency can be bought from individuals in person. For instance, on meetup.com an individual could search for events held in their area or nearby that facilitates a meetup for trades. Websites like localbit.com also allow for individuals to buy and sell Bitcoin in person. Individuals can list how much they are willing to sell and their preferred method of payment.
4.4 Mining for Bitcoin
Mining is the process by which individuals on a cryptocurrency network work to process cryptocurrency transactions. They are rewarded with cryptocurrency for their efforts. Popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum would be extremely difficult for a sole individual to process as they are competing against a huge amount of computer power.
In fact some have estimated that mining for Bitcoin uses over 42TWh of electricity in a year, which places its energy consumption higher than New Zealand and Hungary. This said, mining can still be accomplished by an individual by joining a mining pool – a group of users combining their computing power and sharing the proceeds if they win the reward of processing a block of transactions.