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Has Stellar Changed the Market for Ripple (XRP)?

Ripple (XRP)–Despite the fallout over Coinbase exploring rival currency Stellar Lumens, little has actually changed for the XRP currency and the work of Ripple to promote their payment/remittance protocol.

Last Friday, popular U.S.-based exchange Coinbase made waves across the market of cryptocurrency by announcing it would explore and potentially add five new currencies to its exchange. Listed in the collection was Stellar’s XLM, a cryptocurrency that not only mirrors XRP in functionality, but shares similar roots with the parent company Ripple.

In 2011, after selling off the infamous exchange Mt. Gox, Jed McCaleb turned his cryptocurrency efforts to devising a new currency. Dubbed ‘the ripple protocol,’ McCaleb sought to grow a transactionary cryptocurrency that completed blockchain consensus by members on the network, as opposed to relying upon the resource-draining efforts of Bitcoin’s miners. After securing funding and putting together a development team the parent company Ripple was formed, which led to the creation of the cryptocurrency XRP. However, McCaleb’s run with Ripple was short lived, and in 2013 he left his active role with the company in search of new ventures.

In 2014, using what he had learned through the development process of Ripple, McCaleb started the non-profit Stellar Development Foundation, which eventually led to the creation of the Stellar Consensus Protocol and XLM currency.

Since that time, XRP and XLM have come to be seen by many investors, particularly those within the communities, as rival currencies. While both projects share a similar amount of overlap in their founding roots and development protocol, they also are poised to tackle similar real-world problems through their solution of digital payment. Both Ripple and Stellar are targeting the sector of cross-border payments and remittance, particularly in developing regions of the world, to give the massive, unbanked populations in these countries access to affordable and secure monetary distribution. Thus far, Stellar has secured the backing of IBM in several of its ventures, but XRP has managed to lay the most groundwork through the efforts of the parent company Ripple.

Now, with the advent of the Coinbase announcement, XRP investors have overwhelmingly seen the news as detrimental to their own currency, while Stellar continues to thrive. Since Friday, the XLM currency has jumped 55% in value, going from 0.18 USD to 0.28 USD as of writing (and at one point reaching 0.32 USD in a fever pitch). However, the price movement for Stellar, while still making up for the significant losses the market saw throughout 2018, is largely being built on a deck of cards. For one thing, there is no guarantee of a Coinbase listing. It seems likely that Coinbase will target XLM as both a popular and low-priced coin to offer their 13 million users, but they also have incentive to avoid burning their investment base. Which means, if the price of Stellar Lumens starts rising at an unrealistic pace, it puts pressure on Coinbase to not list the coin and avoid exposing their consumers to a bloated, over-inflated currency.

In addition, the price movement of Stellar is being built through the anticipation of higher gains through Coinbase, not actual adoption. Stellar has made some waves lately with the announcement of Tempo and an IBM-backed stablecoin, but is not giving a 55% increase in value to investors at this moment in development. The last time speculation ran rampant over a Coinbase listing, XRP plummeted from 3.80 USD to 0.45 USD. The same could happen to Stellar, and it does nothing to improve the state of XLM or the industry of cryptocurrency aside from showing the propensity for frenzied price chasing.

Yes, XRP is missing out on an opportunity for wider exposure to more investors by failing to partner with Coinbase. But, as Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin expressed weeks ago when he deemed all centralized exchanges to burn in hell, cryptocurrency communities have become wildly fixated on adoption through exchange listing. Sure, to investors greater exposure = greater potential profits. But at one point the market will become saturated with coins, exchanges and the potential price impact, with nowhere to grow but through actual innovation. Putting all of the attention on price growth through wider exchange listing is almost the definition of a pyramid scheme: everyone buying XLM today is hoping some unfortunate Coinbase user will be willing to buy at a higher price when the time comes.

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IBM to Develop Blockchain and Tech Initiatives for the Australian Government

The IBM company has won a landmark contract offered by the Australian government to develop blockchain and other digital initiatives for the country. The announcement was made on Thursday, June 5th, and indicated that the deal was a five year contract that was worth AUD $1 Billion or approximately $740 million. This contract is part of the Australian government’s efforts to have the country become one of the top 3 digital governments in the globe by 2025 through investing in the research and development of blockchain technology, quantum computing as well as artificial intelligence.

David La Rose, the Managing Director of IBM Australia & New Zealand, expressed the willingness of both the government and IBM to transform the future with respect to technology. He was quoted as saying that:

This agreement is a testament to our forty-year partnership with the Australian Government. It shows trust and belief in our ability to transform and provide world-leading capabilities, leveraging our investments locally in AI, blockchain, quantum and cloud. We look forward to helping the Australian Government to re-define the digital experience for the benefit of all Australians.

The exact details of the contract and partnership were not disclosed but IBM already has agreements in place with four federal agencies in the country. This new contract, spearheaded by the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA), will allow the partnership to expand to the remainder of the government.

One of IBM’s notable partners in the blockchain industry, is Stellar (XLM). IBM is already currently using 9 Stellar nodes as part of its backbone to settle cross border payments across the globe.

The same IBM has used the Stellar blockchain together with Veridium Labs, to create a token economy for carbon credits on the blockchain. This project will allow for transparent and secure tracking of carbon emissions from big companies and institutions to further aid in the reduction and eventual elimination of the green house effect that has been blamed for a lot of climate change.

With the new deal between the Australian Government and IBM, one is left to wonder if they will in turn utilize the Stellar blockchain for further solutions for the country.

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$0.35, $1, $3 and $6.41 Per Stellar (XLM) Price Predictions

The markets are still shaky with Bitcoin (BTC) once again attempting to touch $7,000. Ethereum (ETH) might have found its footing above $400 and is currently trading at $421. Ripple (XRP) is also at the brink of passing $0.50 at the moment of writing this. Our precious Stellar (XLM) has not been left behind and is currently trading at $0.204, up 2.27% in 24 hours.

It is Stellar (XLM) that we want to focus on. And in particular, a few price predictions available on the world wide web.

The first price prediction puts XLM at $0.35 by the end of the year. This price prediction is based purely on Technical Analysis by the team at WalletInvestor.com. This is a very conservative price prediction. They go ahead and advise that if you are looking for virtual currencies with good return, XLM can be a profitable investment option.

The second price prediction was done by OracleTimes.com and puts XLM at a good $1 price very soon. Considering that XLM had touched $0.92 levels on January 3rd this year, this is a more plausible prediction since the article was written in December, 2017. This price prediction is based on the technical capabilities of the Stellar platform that has attracted numerous partnerships from IBM, SatoshiPay, EXCH.ONE, Klick Ex, Mobius and Hashcash. Of worthy mentioning, are the 9 current IBM Stellar Nodes being used for cross border payment settlements that could lead to a few global Central Banks opting for the Stellar Platform for their own National Cryptocurrencies.

A third price prediction is ambitious and puts Stellar at the $2 to $3 range by the end of the year. This is also based on the banking improvements around the globe due to Stellar. The nations that have benefited from the Stellar network are from India, Philippines, Nigeria and several African Countries. Of noteworthy mentioning, is the IBM partnership once again in this price prediction.

A fourth and not necessarily last price prediction on the web, puts XLM at an ambitious $6.41 by the end of the year. This price prediction is courtesy of coinliker.com. The site states that the XLM price predictions are updated every 5 minutes and that they wrote a custom algorithm to hopefully predict future prices for all of our listed digital crypto currencies similar to Stellar. And with it, they have identified that XLM could potentially be very profitable.

All in all, Stellar (XLM) is pretty much a Dark Horse as we head down 2018. Perhaps what many Crypto traders are not aware, are the numerous partnerships that Stellar has already made. They include companies in over 40 countries in industries such as money remittance (TEMPO), mobile financial services (coins.ph), asset management (Stronghold), Crypto exchanges (NaoBTC), digital commerce (cellulant), financial consulting (Deloitte), technology (IBM)…just to name a few.

What then remains to be seen, is the upward increase in value of XLM in the markets as the market gets some much needed stability above the total $250 Billion crypto market cap.

TO THE MOON!