This week alone, Tesla ( said it will )soon accept bitcoin as payment for its vehicles, and disclosed it had purchased $1.5 billion in the cryptocurrency as part of its cash holdings. Meanwhile, Uber ( and )Mastercard ( also said they plan to )start accepting bitcoin. And BNY Mellon — the oldest US bank, whose history dates back to Alexander Hamilton’s founding of Bank of New York in 1784 — announced it has formed a “digital assets” unit.
So if you’ve been ignoring bitcoin thinking it might just be a financial fad, now’s the time to start paying attention. Here’s what you need to know.
What is bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency created in 2009 by an unknown person using the alias Satoshi Nakamoto. Transactions are anonymous and are made with no brokers or intermediaries.
You can’t physically use bitcoin — it’s a digital currency. And it’s decentralized, meaning that it isn’t controlled by a bank or government.
At this very moment it can be used everywhere from Overstock.com to PayPal — and that list is expanding quickly.
A lot of people also see bitcoin as a good investment. And that’s certainly been true this week, considering that bitcoin hit an all-time high of $49,000 this week.
Where can I buy bitcoin?
Bitcoin is 100%