So far with crypto – few personal concerns and experiences

Crypto-currency is a trending topic of the digital economy. You are your bank with crypto because they designed it in such a way. It is anonymous, secure (in a specific way). So far my experience is great with crypto, I can buy gift cards, even Netflix (with gift cards), phone bill recharges and more gift cards. The place where I live outlawed use of crypto-currencies. So I can not use it for day-to-day use, but the places that have the allowance, people can use it for day to day living.

I recently read about a family who travelled 40 countries living off of bitcoin solely. Some difficulties, but they could live with a crypto life! So I think anyone can if their country does not put them in jails for keeping some bitcoins. Bitcoin meanwhile reached it’s all-time high, and it’s getting pretty popular. Still now, people are buying bitcoins hoping the price will increase more soon.

I have a mixed experience with crypto-currencies, for a few reasons. And I want to discuss with you where I feel the complication. I will discuss more solutions and things I wish were possible with crypto-currency.

Getting crypto is hard

My experience in buying crypto is not that good. The popular options for buying crypto requires you to provide personal info. If I want to buy crypto, either I have to go through a conventional sign-up process with personal info, and even identity verification. And then if you want to exchange or sell my crypto, that will sure take some paper-work. This all defeats the purpose of non-hassle banking.

There are non-custodial platforms selling crypto with local money and wallet options. But always, the prices are sky high, 20-30% more than the market value. And after all the processing fees and network fees, you get low value. You end up paying more than the amount of crypto you bought.

It works for many people and in many countries, but not for me. It’s hard. But we can solve this. Non-custodial markets can solve it themselves if they want. Controlling buying rates and selling rates across all platforms can solve it. Some may say it’s not a good idea to control the market, but human nature is very inconsistent and may continue creating such problems if we do not enforce a common rule for buying and selling.

The increasing network fees and inconsistent prices

Crypto value jumps back and forth with a significant difference in price. Sometimes the price gets high and you spend more cash, and after you buy some, the price goes down. And you lose value. Recently the price of mountains has been going up for a long time, so I guess that’s good for some people. But before the price hike, I used to lose 2-3% value often. This is quite unreliable. And the network fee. Network fee is when the miners in the block-chain take a small fee for verifying transactions. This fee is very inconsistent and BTC miners will not pass your transaction if you do not provide them high fees. I wish there was a fixed rate, like 2% network fee.

We need escrow services everywhere

Crypto transactions are irreversible, so once you send someone a transaction, it cannot be reversed. Crypto addresses are designed in such a way that one or two letters get misspelled, there is so little chance that your crypto will land on the wrong wallet. But if the wallet exists, your crypto is gone forever. You cannot refund or cancel a transaction.

This creates a problem when your grandpa accidentally sends a scammer his valuable cryptos in return for a PS5 for his grandkid. And if someone promises you something and asks you to send crypto, and they do not respond, you cannot do anything to get a refund unless the recipient agrees. This is problematic.

We can tackle this with our good old escrow system. So when you want to exchange something for crypto, you send your money to the escrow holder instead of the second party. When you get your product, the escrow will release the fund. There are many escrow services around the web, including those who provide KYC and AML verification, so if you still get scammed, you can file a case against the scammer.

We need more escrow services and we should encourage people to use escrow while transacting with random people. If you are the one who is doing illegal things, I guess you deserve to get scammed. This is not a good enough solution for some people, but it is for the rest until we find a suitable solution to the non-reversible transaction issue of cryptos.

We need to legalize crypto in all countries

If we legalize crypto (which is legal in most countries) and educate people about how it works, we will ‌solve many major problems with crypto. The local adoption of crypto and more payment options and local exchange will solve issues with buying and using crypto. Merchants will accept crypto payments so you will ‌use it for day-to-day life. You will be able to trade crypto locally and someday, there will be banks with debit cards and interests and other features.

Governments fear that people will launder money with the help of crypto, but that idea is far off for most cases. Although not totally impossible. Money laundering is happening even when there is tight financial guarding. And the entire purpose of crypto is to provide a global currency. Currently, spending crypto in many southeast Asian countries is almost impossible. I still use it though, because once I can buy it, it’s easy to spend.

How I spend my crypto

If you are thinking about where to spend your bitcoin, you can buy gift cards for many shops and services in Bitrefill. They have tons of gift cards for different countries, including Google play gift cards, Viber and Skype credits, local mobile recharge, Amazon gift cards and more. They also have a vast collection of gaming gift cards. I like this because of how straightforward the buying process is on this site. So an easy and welcoming user experience lets me buy things quickly and in a fun way.

I buy domains from Porkbun because they support crypto. If you want to register domains with bitcoins or ETH, you can do so with them. Overall, they are pretty famous and long running businesses and their website is full of fun. They also have hosting, but that part is not much affordable and you are better off with other services.

If you want hosting with crypto, you can try Shinjiru. I suggest it because it’s an offshore hosting provider with servers distributed across eight locations. Which makes Shinjiru guarded against sudden shutdown, high down-time and privacy issues. They provide budget friendly hosting options along with VPS and dedicated servers.

There are some services with which you can buy products from Amazon with Bitcoin or ETH. There is a browser extension called Moon that enables you to buy things from Amazon with bitcoin. They also give cashback to promote and sweeten the deal. You can, as I have already discussed, buy Amazon gift cards from Bitrefill and use them to buy from Amazon. That is two simple ways.

Conclusion

I wrote about my personal experience with crypto and so far it’s mixed. Local adoption of crypto is low in my country, so owning and using crypto is a bit of hassle. But I hope, with increasing popularity, we will solve it. Meanwhile, keep learning about crypto-currencies so you can use it in better and safer ways. Thank you for reading.

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