How do you buy Ethereum?
No matter how you get your ETH, you’ll have to grasp a few fundamental ideas first. If you want to use the Ethereum network, you’ll need a wallet to keep track of your crypto assets.
Public key: This is like an email address in the crypto world. People can give you ETH and other Ethereum-based currencies like USDC and Dai using your Ethereum public key. You’re free to distribute this to others.
Consider the private key to be a password. This should be kept out of the hands of strangers. When it comes to private keys, they are just a bunch of random letters and numbers. Seed phrases are only a collection of words that serve as a starting point for ideas. Keeping track of your private keys is critical. You’ll never be able to get your Ether back if you misplace them.
Wallet: You’ll need a wallet to keep your Ether safe. You can create a “custodial wallet” that stores and secures your private keys for you if you’re just getting started, such as by downloading the Coinbase app or going to coinbase.com. Later on, you may want to look into wallets like Compound (a loan and savings software) or Uniswap, which are designed to connect with Decentralized Finance (or DeFi) protocols (a decentralized exchange that allows you to trade cryptocurrencies).
What’s the worth of Ethereum, exactly?
This question can be answered in a variety of ways. On the surface, the value of Ethereum is determined by the market in the same way that any other asset is. A wide range of currencies are accepted, and people can purchase it at any time of day or night. The price may change from day to day based on supply and demand. (Ethereum’s value is still a developing technology, thus it fluctuates a lot more than other assets like the US dollar or Fortune 500 stocks.)
It’s considerably more difficult to understand why the market values it the way it does. Because of Ethereum’s flexibility as a platform for releasing stablecoins and operating DeFi apps, its value is seen by many investors as increasing along with the number of users and transaction fees.
What’s next for Ethereum?
With a market worth of just under $200 billion and over $55 billion in tokens on the blockchain, Ethereum is expected to host the vast majority of blockchain applications by early 2021. Because of Ethereum’s network effects, popular stablecoins like USDC and USDT are currently based on it.
In the meantime, though, a number of new smart contract blockchains are entering the fray. As a result, even though Ethereum is currently the market leader, increasing pressure is being placed on it to make the transition to Ethereum 2.0 effectively.