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The difference between Bitcoin and Blockchain

It is not uncommon for people to confound blockchain with Bitcoin. Since Bitcoin was the first widely known application of blockchain, it has somehow achieved to monopolize what people perceive as blockchain technologies. However, since its public debut in 2008 as the technology behind the Bitcoin (in a whitepaper by Satoshi Nakamoto), blockchain’s larger benefits have gained wider recognition and this bedding technology is now catering to many other industries. In what follows, we are going to explain the differences between Bitcoin, a cryptocurrency, and blockchain, the technology it is based on.Is the best-known cryptocurrency. Now, a decade into the existence of Bitcoin, over 4,000 altcoins (alternative variants of Bitcoin, or other cryptocurrencies) are in circulation. There is no central bank or single administrator for Bitcoins, as a result, they can be sent from user to user on the peer-to-peer Bitcoin network without the need for intermediaries.Is a type of distributed ledger technology. It allows to record transactions between two parties efficiently and in a verifiable and permanent way. Blockchain became known as the underpinning technology that enables the existence of cryptocurrency. However, blockchain technologies can be used for a variety of purposes, bitcoin and altcoins are just one of them.Was created with the aim to speed up the cross-border transactions, to reduce the government’s control over the transaction, and to simplify the whole process without having third-party intermediaries.Is a technology that can be used to provide a low cost, safe and secure environment for peer-to-peer transactions and cut out the unnecessary middleman. As a type of distributed ledger, blockchain offers a reliable way to store data and access it.Is limited to trading as a currency.

Can be used to transfer anything of value, from currencies to property titles or stocks among others. Blockchain technologies have countless uses in both private and public sector. Blockchain technology use cases in the public sector include, for example, storing public health records and land registries, offering immutable voting platform, guaranteeing secure identity management. In the private sector, big technology companies have invested a lot into the blockchain market and are now catering solutions to other industries. Blockchain has been more widely adopted in the banking and Fintech industry. Supply chain management and logistics is another industry where the blockchain has been used to achieve transparency and to build an immutable registry of transactions. Other industries, such as automobile industry, aviation, telecom, music and entertainment among others, have also been exploring their blockchain options. Besides its uses by the companies, blockchain-based Smart contracts permit the stakeholders to exchange goods cutting out the expensive middleman.

Has a more limited scope. Some countries have embraced it more openly, while other governments have banned or restricted it. However, Bitcoin is never legally acceptable as a substitute for a country’s legal tender.Has grown a lot over the last decade and is prone to continue on the rise. More and more governments are launching blockchain initiatives and opting for this technology to guarantee the trust, transparency and security of their systems.From the technology that made the existence of cryptocurrencies possible to a technology that has the makings to revolutionize all industries and government processes – blockchain has come a long way over the last decade and it’s only now that we’re starting to understand its full potential. Bitcoin, on the other hand, has been on a wild roller-coaster ride of ups and downs. It was the first cryptocurrency and remains the best-known, but since 2009 many cryptocurrencies have been invented and used. As a result, the popularity and importance of bitcoin have significantly reduced. To sum up, Bitcoin and blockchain are very different when it comes to what they are, where and how we can use them, however, they do have something in common: they have always aimed to make people’s lives easier.

Zigurat Global Institute of Technology