Ripple has been making waves in the crypto ocean, increasing in value by more than 200% in the last week alone. It currently has a market cap of over $30 billion USD, the individual token is scratching at the $0.8 USD mark - impressive for the “most hated cryptocurrency.”
Ripple is the name for the digital currency XRP and an open payment network. Since its creation in 2012, XRP Ledger for banks and payments providers has been operating as an alternative to the proof-of-work concept that was originally introduced by Bitcoin. The digital currency has a limited number of units, XRP, that can be transferred very fast due to its trust-based validation method. The distributed, open-source payment system was created to “free people" of financial networks (credit cards, banks, PayPal, etc.) and their restrictions like fees and charges for currency exchanges and processing delays.
Why do people dislike Ripple so much?
Rumors have it that Ripple was created by banks to fight Bitcoin. Because it IS set to be used by banks, that claim doesn’t seem far fetched. Unlike Bitcoin, which could completely disrupt the banking system, Ripple wants to help banks. Regulators are even calling for banks to use XRP.
XRP cannot be mined. Every time a transaction occurs on the network, XRP is destroyed, so the amount of XRP decreases over time. All 100 billion XRP tokens were created when the network started, 20 billion of which went to the founders, with the rest held by the company to be slowly distributed over time. Even though the creators claim that XRP will be more decentralized than Bitcoin, this gives the impression that XRP is centralized and that the creators are going to flood the market by selling their own holdings (which they say they won’t). Ripple is not the grand vision of blockchain technology realized, which is why so many resent it. Scepticism is justified, as XRP benefits banks, and one of the big praises of crypto was that they would eliminate middlemen entirely. But if Ripple can solve the real-world problem of slow and expensive cross-border transfers of money, with crypto investing becoming more mainstream, we're expecting XRP to benefit from it.