What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a digital currency that was created in 2009 by an unknown person or group using the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. It was the first decentralized cryptocurrency, meaning it operates without a central authority like a bank or government.
Bitcoin runs on a public ledger called the blockchain, which records all transactions in a peer-to-peer network. Users connect to the network with Bitcoin wallet software, and transactions are verified by network nodes and recorded in the blockchain. This allows two users to transact directly without needing a third-party intermediary.
Bitcoin was created to be an alternative to traditional fiat currencies and was intended to give users financial freedom and anonymity. It has a fixed supply of 21 million coins, which ensures scarcity similar to precious metals. Bitcoin remains the most popular cryptocurrency today, though many others have been created using its source code and basic framework.
Origins of Bitcoin
In January 2009, Nakamoto mined the genesis block, launching the Bitcoin network and the world’s first cryptocurrency. In the early days, bitcoins were mainly obtained through mining and had very little real-world value.
In 2010, some key milestones occurred that showed Bitcoin’s potential as a medium of exchange. Programmer Laszlo Hanyecz conducted the first known commercial Bitcoin transaction, trading 10,000 bitcoins for two pizzas on May 22. Later that year Bitcoin started actively trading, reaching parity with the US dollar.
While Nakamoto was the original inventor, he handed control of the Bitcoin code to developer Gavin Andresen. Since then, hundreds of developers have contributed to improving Bitcoin’s software and helping scale the network. Though the identity of Bitcoin’s founder remains a mystery, a community of developers stewards the project today.
What Makes Bitcoin Different?
Bitcoin’s most unique advantage comes from the fact that it was the very first cryptocurrency to appear on the market. It has managed to create a global community and give birth to an entirely new industry of millions of enthusiasts who create, invest in, trade, and use Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in their everyday lives.
The entire cryptocurrency market — now worth more than $2 trillion — is based on the idea realized by Bitcoin: money that can be sent and received by anyone, anywhere in the world, without reliance on trusted intermediaries, such as banks and financial services companies.
Thanks to its pioneering nature, BTC remains at the top of this energetic market after over a decade of existence. Even after Bitcoin has lost its undisputed dominance, it remains the largest cryptocurrency, with a market capitalization that surpassed the $1 trillion mark in 2021, after the Bitcoin price AUD hit an all-time high of over $100,000 AUD on April 14, 2021. This is owing in large part to growing institutional interest in Bitcoin and the ubiquitousness of platforms that provide use-cases for BTC price checking and trading: wallets, exchanges, payment services, online games, and more.
How the price of Bitcoin (AUD) works
The Bitcoin price AUD is always fluctuating, as Bitcoin is traded globally 24/7. From humble beginnings of less than 1 cent per BTC, the cryptocurrency has seen huge growth, gaining thousands of percent in value to reach the current Bitcoin price. Due to the volatile nature of cryptocurrencies, the BTC price can change frequently.
So, the Bitcoin price AUD you see one minute could be different the next. Additionally, Bitcoin price differences can exist when looking across various exchanges and countries. So, the amount of Australian dollars (AUD) needed to buy Bitcoin can vary depending on where you are located and the exchange you use. The Bitcoin price AUD is never static but constantly adjusting based on trading activity worldwide.
View our guide on how to buy Bitcoin in Australia.