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What is Ripple?

Ripplwas founded in 2012 under the name Opencoin. The company developed the Ripple Transaction Protocol, and in 2015 the name of the company was changed to Ripple.

Ripple is mainly looking for solutions to streamline (international) transactions between banks. In order to do so, they developed three platforms: xRapid, xCurrent, and xVia. The coin XRP can be used on Ripple’s blockchain, making transactions between banks even faster.

Traditional transfers are considered inefficient. Transactions can take multiple days and often come with a hefty fee. If banks join one of Ripple’s platforms to process transactions, they are going to be a lot more efficient.

That works something like this:
Step 1: You send an international payment.
Step 2: Your bank buys XRP.
Step 3: Your bank sends the XRP to the receiving bank.
Step 4: The receiving bank sells the XRP.
Step 5: The proceeds are deposited on the recipient's account.

How do you get ripple (XRP)?

Whilst most coins can be obtained by mining them, XRP is not minable. All XRP coins were created at Ripple’s inception, and Ripple regularly releases coins into the market.

The easiest way to obtain XRP is to buy them at an exchange.

What are the differences between ripple (XRP) and bitcoin?

The biggest and most important difference between bitcoin and ripple is their original goal. On the one hand, Bitcoin was developed as a decentralised peer-to-peer alternative to the current payment system. The idea behind bitcoin is that in order to exchange value, a third party or mediator is no longer needed.

On the other hand, Ripple is developed to improve banks’ current payment system, rather than to replace it. Ripple’s protocol can be used to transfer currencies (among them XRP- their own coin). 

Another important difference is that bitcoin can be mined. Mining bitcoin means that new transactions are verified and collected, put together in a block, which is then added to the existing blockchain. A miner receives newly created bitcoins as a reward. Anyone can acquire bitcoin by mining them, you ‘only’ need a powerful computer.

Ripple has chosen to centralise the issuing of XRP. All XRP that will ever exist have already been created. There are 100 billion XRP, of which 40 billion have already been issued. The rest is still managed by the Ripple Foundation. Every month, the Ripple Foundation releases a maximum of 1 billion XRP into the market. Unused coins are retrieved from the market.

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