What is Ripple?
Ripple Labs is a private enterprise software company that created the Ripple Protocol, an open-source protocol that includes the XRP ledger and RippleNet, a suite of payment solutions products aimed towards institutional usage (banks, non-financial institutions and digital currency exchanges).
The company we know today was originally named OpenCoin, but was rebranded to Ripple in 2015.
Founded in 2012 and based in San Francisco, California, Ripple Labs is a private company – meaning that you cannot buy a share of its business anywhere.
It is important to note that investing in XRP does not mean that you are investing in Ripple Labs, but rather in a product that they have created.
Ripple Labs currently employs over 500 people, has 9 offices around the world, and records (on average) a 300% year-over-year customer growth.
Ripple also offers a software suite designed for developers and businesses to build on XRP, called RippleX. The platform includes tools to interact with the XRP Ledger as well as PayID and Interledger, two protocols that are developed separately from XRP.
People often use Ripple and XRP interchangeably, which creates additional confusion around the project.
What is XRP?
XRP is a cryptocurrency that has been developed, issued, and partially managed by US-based company Ripple Labs. XRP is one of the many products in Ripple Labs’ bundle, all created with the idea to improve the efficiency of cross-border payments, particularly in the banking sector.
It is the native digital currency on the XRP Ledger—an open-source, permissionless, distributed ledger that has the ability to settle transactions in 3 to 5 seconds.
XRP can be sent directly without any need for an intermediary, making it a convenient instrument in bridging two currencies quickly and efficiently. The main purpose of XRP is to be a mediator for currency exchange.
How Does XRP Work?
The XRP ledger uses distributed ledger technology (rather than blockchain technology) to support the transfer of tokens that represent fiat currency, cryptocurrency or any other unit of value. Since the protocol is completely open, anyone could access it without prior approval from Ripple Labs. This allows bank and non-bank actors to incorporate the Ripple protocol into their own systems.
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XRP Transaction Validation
The ledger is maintained by various independent participants of a global “XRP Community.” Every XRP transaction requires an agreement from the independent validator nodes. This agreement is called consensus, and serves as the final and irreversible settlement.
The ledger reaches consensus on all transactions every 3 to 5 seconds (averaging just under 4 second), at which point a new ledger is issued. Anyone has the ability to become a validator, and active validators on the ledger nowadays include universities, exchanges and even financial institutions. There are currently 36 validators, with Ripple Labs running 6 of the nodes (accounting for 16% of the network).
Who Are The Founders of Ripple?
The first iteration of the protocol was created way back in 2004. At this stage, (long before Bitcoin’s inception) the project didn’t have much in common with the cryptocurrencies as we know them today.
The real history of Ripple starts in 2013, when Jed McCaleb, the creator of the eDonkey network, invited numerous world rank investors to invest in the creation of Ripple Labs.
Ripple Labs was founded by Chris Larsen and Jed McCaleb. Larsen – a business executive and privacy activist, is one of the richest men in cryptocurrency. McCaleb, on the other hand, is an entrepreneur and well-known programmer that co-founded several major crypto projects, including Ripple, Stellar, eDonkey, as well as (at the time) the largest crypto exchange in the world, Mt. Gox.
What Makes XRP Unique?
XRP was originally designed to have much quicker and cheaper transactions than other cryptocurrencies, making it more suitable for day-to-day payments. However, it is rarely used in this way, as its developers shift their focus to institutional usage of XRP.
Its ability to be exchanged to any currency or valuable (such as gold) with a unified minimal commission is a great advantage that XRP offers.
What Gives XRP Value?
XRP gets its value from various factors, but mostly from Ripple’s ability to work with institutions and from its ability to quickly and cost-effectively be exchanged for any currency or asset.
How Many XRP Coins Are There In Circulation?
XRP currently has 45,404 billion tokens in circulation, while its total supply counts 100 billion XRP tokens.
Though, Ripple Labs initially owned 55 billion XRP tokens, with the ability to sell 1 billion per month.
How is The Ripple Network Secured?
The difference between XRP and Bitcoin could be summed up as the difference between a company and an economy. Bitcoin’s supply is issued through the mining process at a rate predetermined by a mathematical algorithm. The transactions are processed in the decentralized mining industry, and XRP’s supply is issued by a company at a rate predetermined by its executives, while its transactions are processed by a committee of pre-approved stakeholders.
This makes it a perfect option for those who know what’s wrong with the traditional banking mechanisms, but aren’t quite into the complete decentralization.
How to Use XRP?
While XRP’s main purpose as an exchange and international bank transfer is quite underdeveloped at the moment, the digital currency is accepted by at least 4,500 merchants across the globe.
How to Choose an XRP Wallet?
There are many wallets that can store XRP. Depending on their need for security and functionality, users can choose the wallet that suits them. Kriptomat exchange is a great place to store your XRP, as it offers a large range of functional options (buying, selling, exchanging for other cryptocurrencies) without ever compromising on security.
XRP is a digital currency for people who believe that a modernization of traditional banking is needed, but not to the extent that other cryptocurrencies propose. XRP’s value comes from its processing speed and appeal to the institutions, and it is the middle ground between traditional finance and decentralized finance.
Ripple and XRP FAQ
Is XRP decentralized?
No, XRP is decentralized in terms of how its validators work. However, the fact that these validators have to be approved by a single entity decreases the overall decentralization of the network.
Is XRP a blockchain?
No, XRP is a distributed ledger, but not a blockchain.
Does buying XRP mean I buy Ripple as well?
Buying XRP doesn’t mean you buy Ripple stock. Ripple is not a publicly traded company, which means that its shares cannot be bought on any exchange.
How to Buy XRP?
Buying XRP is as easy as visiting the Kriptomat buy Ripple page and choosing a method of payment. Kriptomat enables its users to buy XRP with MasterCard or Visa, SEPA transfer, Skrill, Neteller, or Sofort.
How to Sell XRP?
If you already own XRP and hold it on the Kriptomat exchange wallet, you can easily sell it by navigating the interface and choosing your desired payment option.
The current Ripple price is EUR.
The 24-hour trading volume of XRP is EUR. XRP is currently ranked of all cryptocurrencies by total market capitalization, with a market cap of EUR. It has a circulating supply of XRP and the max. Supply is 1 billion XRP.
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