Bytecoin is one of the older cryptocurrencies that have been released, and possibly the oldest of the privacy-centric cryptocurrencies as you’ll see later in this article.
Bytecoin (BCN) was launched all the way back in July 2012. At that time it was prices at 10 satoshis and it stayed at that price for most of the first five years of its existence. It did rally in late 2017 along with the rest of the cryptocurrency markets, and then in May 2018 it surged higher by 300% as traders reacted to news that it was being traded on the Binance exchange.
Bytecoin has one other very important first in the cryptocurrency ecosystem – it was the very first coin to be based on the CryptoNote technology. And partially because of this it is sometimes called the “totally anonymous cryptocurrency.” Bytecoin takes advantage of one-time address usage and ring signatures as part of its privacy features.
Another notable feature of Bytecoin is that it wasn’t created from the fork of another coin. It was coded completely from scratch. However it has had over 20 hard forks itself, and was the basis for both Dash and Monero.
Adding to the privacy and mystery of Bytecoin are the online accounts that say all of the founders and creators of Bytecoin are anonymous. This isn’t technically true. You can find the complete list of team member and developers at the Bytecoin.org site. Of course most of the developers used pseudonyms, and some are completely anonymous, even to other members of the development team. I guess that means there really is an air of mystery surrounding the entire Bytecoin project.
Bytecoin Review: Features
Bytecoin calls itself the completely anonymous cryptocurrency and the very first enterprise ready cryptocurrency. Let’s have a closer look at the features of Bytecoin to see if those claims are justified.
Instant Fee-free Payments: Your transactions on the Bytecoin network have no fees, and they happen nearly as fast as the internet works. There are confirmations required for each transaction, so it isn’t literally instant, but Bytecoin claims transactions take no more than 2 minutes. And that’s regardless of distance. You can send a payment from New York to Tokyo in just 2 minutes with Bytecoin.
Security: Bytecoin uses the most secure cryptographic algorithms and says these “are impossible to hack.” That’s a very bold claim to make, and if true it makes Bytecoin one of the more secure cryptocurrencies. The creators of Bytecoin claim that hacking the currency “would require immense amount of expensive electricity and computational power of a supercomputer”.
Private Data: With Bytecoin the only way anyone can get personal information about you or even your wallet balance is if you allow them to see that information. That allows you to maintain complete privacy from the prying eyes of others, including any third party entity, or even your business partners.
Bytecoin Review: How to Start Using Bytecoin
Bytecoin was created as an open cryptocurrency, and if you decide to use it you can voluntarily become one of the operators helping to secure the network.
This begins by downloading the Bytecoin wallet software and installing it on your computer. Once that’s complete you can begin to send and receive Bytecoins.
If you’re interested in helping to secure and maintain the network you can do this by allocating some of the computing power of your computer to the Bytecoin network. This is also one of the methods for getting some Bytecoins without having to buy them directly from an exchange.
Bytecoin Review: How Do Bytecoin Transactions Work?
Bytecoin transactions work in much the same way as other cryptocurrencies, with one major distinction – it’s far more anonymous.
As an example, say you make an online purchase and you have the opportunity to pay for the goods with BCN. The merchant will send you a bill, including the wallet address to send the payment to. To pay that bill you’ll broadcast to the Bytecoin network to send 1 BCN from Your_Address to Merchant_Address
Each computer in the Bytecoin network receives this instruction. Then, these computers collectively check whether the 1 BCN you’re trying to transfer actually belongs to you.
Since Bytecoin is anonymous, the BCN network doesn’t actually know who transferred the 1 BCN to you in the first place. The system simply checks the conformity of your signature and has no access to personal data.
Then, each computer in the network packs the transactions that need to be processed into a block. Bocks need to comply with specific rules – i.e. a difficult task to solve. Each computer in the network calculates suitable transaction block form to protect the network from transaction forgery. Eventually, one computer in the network finds the correct block structure, which adds another block to the blockchain.
Each block takes 120 seconds to complete. During this time, the system checks the authenticity of the transaction and processes it. Then, by the end of the 120 seconds, the merchant now owns your 1 BCN.
Bytecoin (BCN) Token
Bytecoin hasn’t done as well as many other coins, including some that were forked from Bytecoin, primarily because many investors had an issue with the pre-mine of Bytecoin. 82% of BCN tokens were already mined prior to the release of Bytecoin.
This pre-mine is one of the things holding Bytecoin’s price back. They sit in the wallets of the founders, developers and early stakeholders. Instead of Bytecoin becoming the preferred privacy coin that honor went to Monero, which is a coin that was forked from Bytecoin in the first place.
Bytecoin hit an all-time high of $0.0159 on January 6, 2018 as it was taking part in the broad based rally in the cryptocurrency markets. It later reached $0.0124 on May 14, 2018 in response to being listed on Binance.
As of late September 2018 the price of BCN has returned to $0.002231, but it is still the 24th largest cryptocurrency by market cap, with a market capitalization of $410.59 million.
Today, there are 184.066 billion BCN in circulation. Another 65,000 BCN are added every 120 seconds to reward miners. The total supply of BCN is capped at 184.47 billion, and once that number is reached no moce BCN will be created. However there will be transaction fees on blocks to continue rewarding miners. It’s also expected that the price of BCN will begin to rise once all of the BCN have been put into circulation.
Where to Buy BCN
Bytecoin can be purchased at a number of different exchanges, but only with BTC, ETH and USDT. There’s no exchange where you can buy BCN with fiat currency. The top three exchanges for BCN are Gate.io, Binanc, and HitBTC. There’s also a modest trading volume at Poloniex and OKEx.
Where to Store BCN
Bytecoin’s developers have created a web based wallet, a mobile wallet (Android only) and a desktop wallet (Windows only). All three can be downloaded from the Bytecoin website here. Bytecoin can also be stored in the third-party wallets Freewallet, a multi-wallet for Android, iOS and web, and Cryptonator, a desktop and mobile wallet.
Bytecoin Review: Conclusion
As with any altcoin there’s no certainty which way price will go in the short term. The fact the Bytecoin is one of the older cryptocurrencies and that it remains in the top 25 is promising, and supports the idea that it could be a good long term investment.
The real test I think will be once all of the coins are mined. After that miners will need to depend on transaction fees to get paid, and there could be some increase in price as supply has been cut off.
The coin is very good as a privacy coin, and has some features not found in other coins that make it suitable as a transactional coin. Plus there’s a good community backing the project.
There are definitely worse cryptocurrencies to hold, so giving Bytecoin a try is something that might pay off eventually.