QTUM, pronounced Quantum, is not new to the cryptocurrency scene. Its entry into the market came in 2016 as a superior solution to problems that plague both the Ethereum and Bitcoin blockchains. Its vision was to bring the best of both worlds into one network that would be far more superior to the Ethereum and Bitcoin networks individually. Many referred to it as the “Ethereum killer.” This idea saw it gather around $15.6 million in 2 rounds of ICO crowdfunding in early 2017. In this review, we take a deep-dive into QTUM and uncover whether or not QTUM has lived up to its name.
What is QTUM?
QTUM is an advanced blockchain technology whose foundation lies on Bitcoin’s blockchain combined with Ethereum’s EVM (Ethereum’s Virtual Machine). In other words, QTUM has bridged the gap between the two technologies to produce a network that has the best of both worlds. For instance, Ethereum’s EMV gives QTUM a stable dApp environment while Bitcoin provides extensive security. The integration of the two technologies happens via the introduction of a third layer known as “Account Abstract Layer.” It then wraps them up in a POS (Proof-of-Stake) consensus to beat the huge energy requirements of POW (Proof-of-Work).
Therefore, QTUM has made smart contracts more secure while allowing for interoperability between Bitcoin and Ethereum. As such, QTUM is poised to benefit from advances in both technologies. Furthermore, any smart contracts built on Ethereum can be easily ported over to QTUM with great ease. By doing so, it hopes to increase the range of smart contracts applications, especially for institutional and business purposes. It makes it easier for businesses to build and execute smart contracts by offering a diverse range of tools, templates, and plug-and-play options. It also offers a native wallet, oracles that allow off-chain data to be used, and a smart contract management application.
How to Mine QTUM
One of the ways that you can get your hands on a QTUM coin is through mining. Mining, in this case, is the act of securing the QTUM network while at the same time, increasing the overall supply of QTUM in the network. As suggested earlier, QTUM uses the POS consensus mechanism. It means that you can only mine QTUM through staking. You don’t require very expensive mining software such as ASICs. Neither do you need large quantities of energy. QTUM POS mining is environmentally friendly and works on the principle of random selection which promotes more individuals to stake.
To stake, you need to have stored QTUM crypto in an address for 500 blocks, that’s about 17 hours, and then run their full node software on a computer that remains connected to the QTUM network 24/7. Since the system operates on the principle of random selection, POS is like winning a lottery. However, you can improve your chances of being chosen by having a large stake in each validation. The higher the stake, the greater the probability of block validation, and then the collection of the QTUM POS reward. Currently, yearly ROI stands at 4.43%.
Where to Buy QTUM
QTUM is among the top 40 cryptocurrencies according to CoinMarketCap. Given its popularity, it’s not that hard to buy QTUM. Many online crypto exchanges are selling it. But before we can get into where to buy Qtum, let’s take a look at how to buy Qtum cryptocurrency. There are several ways of going about it. These include:
- Buy Qtum via credit/ debit cards or bank transfer
- Buy Qtum by exchanging them via with other cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum or Bitcoin.
Buying QTUM via Bank Transfers and Cards
It’s quite easy to purchase Qtum with fiat currency. However, not a lot of exchanges provide this option. Those that do, provide you linked crypto wallets that you can deposit your fiat currency to buy Qtum. Others, even allow you to directly purchase Qtum straight from your card or bank account.
Some trusted exchanges that allow you to buy Qtum currency include:
- ChangeNOW: allows purchase of Qtum via credit/debit cards.
- Bitfinex: Offers support for US dollars
- Livecoin: Offers option for purchasing Qtum with USD
- Quoine: Allows purchase of Qtum with JPY
Purchasing QTUM through Other Cryptocurrencies
As stated earlier, not all exchanges allow you to purchase Qtum directly via bank transfer or with cards. However, some do allow you to purchase Qtum via other cryptocurrencies such as ETH or BTC. For a fee, you can exchange one cryptocurrency for another. Some of the exchanges that allow you to exchange other cryptos for Qtum include:
- ChangeNOW: Allows purchase of Qtum with BTC, ETH, and USD
- Livecoin: Allows purchase of Qtum with BTC, ETH, and USD
- Bitfinex: Allows purchase of Qtum with BTC, ETH, and USD
- Binance: Allows purchase of Qtum with BTC & ETH
- KuCoin: Allows purchase of Qtum with BTC & NEO
What is the Best QTUM Wallet?
After buying the QTUM cryptocurrency, you need to store it somewhere safe. Back in the days, most people would just leave their cryptocurrencies in whatever exchanges they bought them from. However, this changed when cryptocurrency exchanges became the target of hackers who would drain them dry, some to the point of bankruptcy. With this in mind, here is a list of the best QTUM wallets to store your QTUM coins.
Ledger Nano S/ Blue Models
For those who prefer to store their coins offline, away from prying eyes, the Ledger Nano S and Blue models are perfect. This QTUM ERC20 compatible wallet focusses mainly on security as it stores your private keys in a secure element protected by a personal PIN and 2FA. It connects to your computer via USB and is pretty easy to set up and use. It also has buttons and an OLED display that you can use to manually verify transactions.
QTUM Core (Mobile and Desktop Wallet)
QTUM core is the official online wallet for Qtum. It’s a good place to start if you are not familiar with other wallets or you can’t afford the Ledger Nano S wallet. It’s available for download directly from the Qtum website. Set up is pretty simple and the wallet is very straightforward to use. The Qtum Core can be accessed on the following platforms:
- Android smartphones
- Windows 64-bit, Windows 32-bit, Linux
The Qtum Electrum can also be accessed and downloaded from the Qtum official website. The wallet is available for both Windows and Mac operating systems. It focusses on speed and simplicity. Additionally, it offers support for mutisig and can be integrated with a hardware wallet. If you are new to the cryptocurrency scene, then this wallet might be a little bit advanced for use. You may find comfort in other simple and easy to use wallets.
Qtum Web Wallet
For this wallet, you don’t need to be a genius or tech expert to set it up or operate it. In case you want your Qtum wallet online, then this is your best bet. This wallet places a lot of emphasis on simplicity as everything can be handled with minimal effort. All important information is displayed efficiently and clearly. The user interface is basic and thus, allows for beginners to quickly set up and use it. However, you should be aware that web wallets are risky. Therefore, exercise caution at all times.
Has QTUM lived up to its name of being an ‘Ethereum killer?’ No, not yet at least. However, one thing that QTUM has lived up-to is combining the value transfer capabilities of bitcoin with Ethereum’s smart contracts applications. It has delivered the best of both worlds, providing an environment attractive to developers who are looking to move away from popular platforms. Additionally, it has directed its focus towards the business world shaping itself up as a serious player in the 2020 blockchain sphere. While it has a lot of competition, if it focusses on making good on its promises, it might just live up to its name.