Binance Coin (BNB) Becomes Part Of Cobo Wallet Offerings

A number of major cryptocurrencies such as ETH, EOS and TRX are already associated with Cobo wallet and Binance becomes the latest to join this …

Binance Chain has been integrated on one of the world’s leading crypto wallets in a move that will give holders of Binance Coin access to a range of DApps.

Cobo wallet will now have Binance Coin and the wallet gives users access to DApps such as CryptoKitties and FOMO3D, among a host of other applications.

Cobo has integrated with #Binance Chain now! Cobo Wallet and Custody is supporting #BNB storage. More collaboration to come soon! @binance@cz_binance

Keep your funds #SAFU with Cobo: https://t.co/cKFuZsr0I6pic.twitter.com/HiNAdWI1Zd

— Cobo Wallet (@Cobo_Wallet) August 9, 2019

A number of major cryptocurrencies such as ETH, EOS and TRX are already associated with Cobo wallet and Binance becomes the latest to join this list. Cobo wallet provides its users with a wide range of services including procurement, record registration, voting, resource summary and a number of other DApp tools.

One of the biggest advantages that come with Cobo wallet is the high level of security the wallet offers to crypto holders. The wallet uses an advanced user end security system which requires multiple factors for the validation process.

Private keys, which users need to access their cryptocurrency, can be stored in multi signature cards which means that they need a certain number of different signatures before the cryptocurrency is dispensed.

The Cobo Wallet

Cobo wallet was founded in China and the company’s headquarters are found in Beijing. There are plans to expand the wallet’s territory to include countries such as Indonesia, Vietnam and the United States.

The wallet is currently available in over 80 countries and it serves a significant chunk of the crypto community. The company has raised over $13 million which will be channeled towards further developing their framework to include the countries which they currently do not serve.

The leading wallet is the first of its kind to use a proof of stake (PoS) protocol. The wallet also has a master node through which the wallet’s users can access all crypto services in one application.

Cobo wallet can be used to store and trade cryptocurrencies securely, and rolling these functions into one application makes it unique and one of the most desirable wallets on the market. Customers are able to invest in Bitcoin without having to move their holdings to another platform.

Binance Chain will find integration into the Cobo wallet beneficial. The wallet is used by over 500,000 people which will expose Binance to an extensive market. There are over 30 digital assets available through Cobo wallet and an additional 500 tokens on the main blockchain.

Being a part of such a wallet will boost Binance’s reviews and the Binance Coin can be expected to become one of the most traded tokens on the market after this move.

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Some boring facts about Bitcoin, and why you should remember them

Yes, Satoshi Nakamoto is the name of the enigmatic creator of Bitcoin, the person who started the world that we live in today. The honour of being the …

It has been around ten years since the first time that Bitcoin came into existence. With this amount of time passing, we should do a quick review of some of the more boring facts about Bitcoin, which all determine, in one way or another, what Bitcoin is to us today. These facts need the occasional review, simply because they are important to the history of the currency. Although, the importance of these facts lies not just with the curiosity of their validity, but also to what they can tell us about our own attitude towards the currency today. They tell us where the currency came from and what it means to toe society in general. They are a way to contextualize Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general for us so that we can be self-aware of how we use them in our day to day lives and why we use them in those specific ways. In a way, they are a mirror to the cryptocurrency enthusiast of today, just one more opportunity to stop and consider where we stand after ten years with Bitcoin and now with other ryptos.

Value of Bitcoin at its launch

The first thing that I want to discuss is the value of the very first Bitcoin. The history of the currency starts very humbly, being worth so much less than it is today, that it is even funny to consider how it could have gotten from there to here. It is also not surprising that so many people hesitated, at the time, to in any way invest in cryptocurrencies or anything that was related to them. At the very beginning of its history, Bitcoin sat at the modest price of $0.003. Compared to today, that is nothing. The change that the value of Bitcoin has seen since is astronomical, with the decimal point moving 9 times to get to where it is now. It makes sense now why the first purchase ever made with Bitcoin was of Pizza, using about 5000 Bitcoins at the time. That is also when the real history of Bitcoin got started, May 22nd, the date that started the crazy journey that brought us to where we are now.

The growth of the value of Bitcoin has not been an accident, or the result of speculation. It is simply a sign of the times changing. The people are losing the trust they had in traditional payment systems, currencies and financial assets fast, and are demanding an alternative to the well established. Cryptocurrencies are offering users a chance to invest in an asset that can be an alternative in a world where everything is either controlled, tracked or even at the risk of failing. The modern global economy is not inspiring a lot of trust among the general population, and the demand for alternative ways of exchanging money is becoming high. Bitcoin is just one of the many, and the most popular, ways to keep yourself not bankrupt in a situation where the world is no longer able to guarantee your future to you.

The value of 1 Satoshi

If you know what Bitcoin is and have ever tried to pay for anything with it, you are aware of Satoshi. Yes, Satoshi Nakamoto is the name of the enigmatic creator of Bitcoin, the person who started the world that we live in today. The honour of being the person who created the currency has been further emphasized by the fact that one-millionth of a Bitcoin is now called a Satoshi. Satoshi has a relationship to Bitcoin similar to that of what cents have to the Dollar. Except, instead of being 1/100th of a Bitcoin, it is 1/1000000, making it a much smaller fraction. The initial reason for this is pretty simple – after reaching a certain value, it became hard to keep referring to fractions of Bitcoin as such, and the quantitative of Satoshi was introduced. But, anticipating that the value of a Bitcoin is going to keep growing, people decided to create a unit of Bitcoin that would hedge against that in the future.

So why is it important that one Satoshi is a millionth of a Bitcoin? Because it tells us of what the world and the cryptocurrency community is expecting the currency to achieve in the future. Many people are expecting that someday, Bitcoin will be valuable enough that one Satoshi will be a viable sum of money for everyday use. It tells us that the community is extremely optimistic about the value of Bitcoin and it also tells us that it has set itself a goal that is beyond the simple valuation and use of Bitcoin that we have today. The goal is to have the value be higher, yes, but it is also to keep the value steady so that it can be used for everyday applications without any kind of issue or fear.

Bitcoin Network computing power

When you take the top 500 supercomputers in the world, combine their computing powers and compare them to that of the computing power of the network that is currently mining Bitcoin, you will discover that the Bitcoin network is 7468 times more powerful, and getting more powerful every day. This information might be a little scary, after all, dedicating this much of our computing power to Bitcoin might not necessarily be the most responsible thing to do. But it is also information that can tell you a lot about what it means to be a Bitcoin society and a Bitcoin miner. Specifically, it is extremely hard to contribute to the community significantly. The amount of computational power that it takes to mine a single block, nowadays, is extremely high and extremely expensive to achieve. So, many miners working in the industry today, face issues such as not being able to make ends meet or have to quit, simply because they cannot afford to participate in the activity anymore.

But, on the other hand, it also shows how far the Bitcoin mining community has come. Once upon a time, the community was small, and the number of coins mined day today was pretty small as well. As the numbers of miners increased and the numbers of people participating in the industry increased, we have achieved a level of dedication that has not been seen before. Now, the Bitcoin community is one of the largest in the world, and that is something to be proud of and to be considerate of.

Limit on the number of Bitcoins

There are those who think the Bitcoin is an unlimited resource, but the fact of the matter is, they are not. The number of Bitcoins in circulation at one time is limited to 21 million at the same time. The reasons for this are many, some of them relating to the stress on the Blockchain Network in terms of the computational power needed in order to conduct transactions with more Bitcoins than that, and the others being related to the fact that the value of cryptocurrencies needs to be kept at a certain level of stability, and this is one of the many ways to do so. The fact that there are only 21 million Bitcoins allowed for circulation has many effects on the international cryptocurrency economy, some of them positive, others rather annoying. But one thing is for certain, there have been attempts to breach this limitation.

Specifically, in the starting days of cryptocurrency, a hack took place that allowed for a transaction of trillions worth of Bitcoins in a single transaction. While the Bug was quickly mitigated and fixed, so that it could never be exploited again, the system stress at the time was immense. The Blockchain network and the miners suffered quite a lot through that transaction, and the value of Bitcoin saw quite a bit of a drop because of that single occurrence. But, thankfully, the value of Bitcoin was already pretty low at the time, so the currency got a chance to rebound.

Ghost Bitcoins

This is something that is often forgotten, which is a little more than appropriate when speaking of Ghost Bitcoins. You see, a significant number of Bitcoins that have been mined and given to users are now inaccessible, either because the keys to the wallets they are store in have been lost, or the wallets themselves have been lost. When I say significant, I mean that 64% of all Bitcoins that have ever existed have been lost and become Ghost bitcoins, not being able to contribute to the crypto industry economy in any other way than just existing as a nonexistent resource. These are the coins that are keeping the value of Bitcoin pretty high, by making the resource as scarce as it is, it provides certain stability. The knowledge that a significant part of cryptos will always be inaccessible leaves Bitcoin being pretty stable in its value.

But it acts as an important lesson as well – many people forget to do the very basic thing when dealing with Bitcoin – keep track of it. Without the keys to wallets, you have no access to the Bitcoins, meaning that the Bitcoin is no longer yours. So, making sure that you don’t accidentally make ghost Bitcoins is important, more so than even buying them in the first place. Creating new Ghost Bitcoins is equivalent to creating additional issues for the industry. After all, Bitcoin is a finite resource, and getting rid of a significant part of it is only going to cause issues at some point in the future.

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Research: Tether {USDT} Whales Include Major Exchanges Bitfinex, Binance

Research by Coin Metrics, reported by Bloomberg yesterday, shows that about 80% of the cryptocurrency Tether is owned and controlled by just 300 …

Research by Coin Metrics, reported by Bloomberg yesterday, shows that about 80% of the cryptocurrency Tether is owned and controlled by just 300 addresses.

The term ‘whales’ came to be used in cryptocurrency jargon to refer to investors and traders who control hundreds of thousands of Bitcoin {BTC} and can manipulate the market at will due to the sheer volume of the currency they own and control. Nonetheless, Bitcoin whales control about 20% of the total Bitcoin supply.

In contrast, recent data shows that a mere 318 accounts hold about $1 million worth of Tether, comprising 80% of its total supply.

A lot of Tether is concentrated in the hands of brokers who cater to Chinese investors who use Tether as a means of exchanging their yuan, especially given the strict financial regulations imposed by the Chinese government. This is not surprising, given that Tether was founded to be a utility token that represents fiat currency and can facilitate cross-border payments through blockchains. It is a ‘stablecoin’, and is linked to the US Dollar at a 1:1 ratio. Every Tether token that is ‘minted’ has to be backed by a US Dollar.

However, Tether has been the subject of intense scrutiny and controversy since 2015 due to its suspected lack of fiat reserves. In fact, in April, the Attorney General of New York accused the companies and founders of Tether of covering up its losses.

What is really interesting is that some of cryptocurrency’s largest exchanges are included in the list of Tether whales. This includes Binance and Hong Kong-based Bitfinex. Many of these exchanges, especially Bitfinex, are referred to as the ‘Tether Mafia’. Bitfinex shares the same leadership as Tether, and critics believe that new tokens were being used by exchanges to manipulate the value of other cryptocurrencies. This was observed after the value of Bitcoin, and subsequently, altcoins would fluctuate wildly after new Tether tokens were issued.

A finance professor at the University of Texas at Austin, John Griffin, told Bloomberg:

“The concentration of Tether suggests that control of Tether is in the hands of a few central players who can swing Bitcoin prices, and have a vested interest in doing so. It also suggests that many exchange players have a vested interest in keeping the Tether game going.”

About Post Author

Tulika Jain

Bibliophile, crazy cat lady and passionate about financial and economic journalism. I don’t trade in cryptocurrency but am fascinated by the market.

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How The Watch Industry Is Testing Blockchain And Cryptocurrency, Plus Five Brands That Have …

Blockchain technology is just a digital trail of a transaction, a watch part – or anything really – that anyone can download and see and add to, but not …

Blockchain technology is just a digital trail of a transaction, a watch part – or anything really – that anyone can download and see and add to, but not delete any part of. Yet the two parties involved remain anonymous.

No one can rewrite the transaction history, nor will it ever disappear. Right away the benefit of anonymous transactions and tracking is apparent, if not yet mainstream in the timekeeping industry.

Cryptocurrency uses blockchain technology in its transactions. Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, Litecoin, and Facebook’s Libra are all cryptocurrencies. There are more than 1,000 cryptocurrencies in the market, but Bitcoin is by far the most used. However, Facebook with its worldwide reach and 2.4 billion customers could easily eclipse Bitcoin if it wished.

Each cryptocurrency works as a medium of exchange using blockchain cryptography to execute financial transactions. While the transactions are public, the counterparties remain anonymous as do the nature of their commerce.

That’s it. Nothing more complicated than that.

How does the watch industry use blockchain?

For starters, the watch industry suffers hugely from counterfeiters.

By attaching a unique Quick Response Code (QR for short) to a watch, then using blockchain to track its entire history from the beginning of the manufacturing process onward throughout its entire life, every step is permanently recorded. Steps can be added – such as services – but never deleted. This way, there’s no question whatsoever as to authenticity.

The author’s QR code

Richemont seems to be on the bleeding edge of employing blockchain. Among its many brands, it has chosen Vacheron Constantin – the world’s oldest continually operating watch manufacture – to test blockchain technology in tracking watches, beginning with its Les Collectionneurs line of vintage, pre-owned watches. If successful, the one-of-a-kind blockchain certification (which cannot be lost, stolen, or forged) could replace paper authentication.

Further, this indelible digital certificate of authenticity follows the watch throughout its life. The unique QR code and the particular movement and watch to which it is assigned are inseparable. This guarantees authentic data about the watch, its value, and authenticity.

Vacheron Constantin blockchain technology for a pre-owned Les Collectionneurs timepiece

Using blockchain technology, the pre-owned and vintage markets instantly have a proven way to authenticate any watch with a unique QR code. This certainly won’t collapse the watch forgery industry – which seems to have its own place, however distasteful – but at least it prevents surreptitious bleed-over into the legitimate market.

Because scanning the QR code is so quick and easy (load any scan app onto your mobile phone, point the camera at the QRC, and it goes to the intended site), distinguishing an authentic watch from a fake could stabilize values in the secondary market, leaving only the watch’s condition, rarity, and perhaps its provenance as the differentiating factors to affect price.

Then there’s the grey market. The incorruptible blockchain can track the shipping progress of every new watch, from the brand in question to individual retailers and finally to the end consumer. It’ll flag any deviation to grey market operators.

Unique QR codes linked to a blockchain database could become the watch industry’s authentication standard in the next few years.

Who uses cryptocurrency and for what?

It has been said that Bitcoin is the millennial’s gold; that it’s a generational marriage between innovation and personal choice. That’s a huge stretch considering the nature of cryptocurrency transactions.

The most frequent use of cryptocurrency is for speculation – usually in Bitcoin. That isn’t buying or selling a commodity. Nor is it investing. Far from it.

Bitcoin is among the most volatile of any traded [dare I say?] currencies. Buying it in the hopes of cashing in on its appreciation is about as smart as grabbing a falling knife.

The second most frequent use of cryptocurrency is on the dark web – usually for illegal drug transactions. “Bitcoin is the most common form of payment for drug sales on dark net marketplaces and is emerging as the conveyance of choice for transferring illicit drug proceeds internationally,” the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency wrote in its 2017 National Drug Threat Assessment.

The next most popular uses of cryptocurrencies – almost always in Bitcoin – are illegal money laundering, ransomware, and evading international sanctions. Indeed, North Korea’s currency of choice seems to be Bitcoin. Iran and Russia are fast following suit into cryptocurrency for the purpose of evading U.S. sanctions.

Add to these uses crypto theft and hacking the crypto infrastructure for fun and profit, and we’ve covered the lion’s share of cryptocurrency usage. The tiniest use category is legitimate transactions – such as buying a watch.

Watches that uses Bitcoin: four brands lead the way

At least four prominent watch brands have hopped on the Bitcoin bandwagon, though: Franck Muller, Chronoswiss, A. Favre & Fils, and Hublot. Of these, Franck Muller seems to have the most robust cryptocurrency model.

Franck Muller Vanguard Encrypto

This high horology brand is famous for its unique designs beginning with its typical Cintrée Curvex case as well as fans among various Hollywood glitterati and top athletes. Franck Muller’s entry into the cryptocurrency space is its Vanguard Encrypto watch.

Franck Muller Vanguard Encrypto

The Vanguard Encrypto watch interacts with the owner’s Bitcoin wallet. Here’s how it works.

Each watch has its own unique QR code etched on the watch dial. That’s the public address for the owner’s personal Bitcoin wallet. Anyone can scan the QR code on the watch face and see the value of the Bitcoin wallet. The owner’s identity remains completely anonymous.

Franck Muller Vanguard Encrypto case and accessories

The second component in the Muller Encrypto package is a sealed USB device containing a private key code. The owner (or anyone with a clear view to scan the watch dial) can add Bitcoins to the owner’s wallet or check the balance.

However, removing Bitcoins from the wallet requires use of the USB device. For example, say Iran’s Hassan Rouhani wants to buy some nuclear centrifuges, U.S. sanctions notwithstanding. Rouhani just scans his Vanguard Encrypto watch to open the Islamic State’s Bitcoin wallet, then inserts his USB device into his laptop to verify access.

The required millions of Bitcoins instantly transfer to Vladimir Putin’s Bitcoin wallet. Transaction closed, and the centrifuges leave Novorossiysk for Bandar Abbas. Since the parties to this purchase are totally anonymous, the public sees only the flow of Bitcoins, not who paid or received them or for what purpose – a completely dark transaction.

And it’s far easier logistically than spending some of the $400 million in cash Barack Obama shipped to Rouhani in pallets aboard a cargo jet in 2016 in exchange for signing his nuclear treaty.

Franck Muller’s regional director Erol Baliyan says, “We always aim to impact the customer at an emotional level and create a bond between the customer and the timepiece. As a brand, we are a trend maker with a solid track record and are not shy when it comes to adopting innovation.”

‘Crazy’ colorful gem-set Franck Muller Vanguard Encrypto

Franck Muller says the Encrypto watch is the first crypto-wearable. The Bitcoin logo sits front and center, right below the owner’s unique laser-etched QR code.

Buyers can order the case in a variety of metals as well as customize the dial with precious metals and diamonds. The cost for the watch ranges between $10,000 and $50,000 depending on case materials and diamond setting.

Deep cold storage features

Deep cold storage is simply cryptocurrency jargon describing how owners can keep a reserve of Bitcoins offline, protected from system failures and security breaches. It’s the digital cousin to a safety deposit box in a bank.

Franck Muller’s Vanguard Encrypto facilitates keeping a cache of Bitcoins in deep cold storage by using the two-piece authentication (the watch’s QR code on its face and the USB encrypted key). By the way, the USB device allows complete access (deposit or withdrawal) to the Bitcoin wallet and should be treated as cash. Franck Muller suggests it be kept in a highly secure, access-controlled location.

Each Franck Muller Encrypto timepiece is a two-piece set with its own unique public QRC address etched on the dial and a sealed USB device containing the private wallet access key. Owners can add Bitcoins to their virtual wallets or check their balances directly by scanning the watch dial.

To spend their Bitcoins, they need the USB key and a laptop.

Investing in Bitcoin

Editorial disclaimer: Bitcoin value is extraordinarily volatile (about six times that of the S&P 500). It moves on a daily basis in large swings for no apparent reason. It is not an investment vehicle, but rather an instrument of speculation. Perhaps that’s the reason Franck Muller designed this watch to be big and flashy with optional diamonds – exactly the watch a high-rolling cryptocurrency speculator would want strapped to his or her wrist.

Franck Muller designed the Vanguard Encrypto’s QR code and cold storage system in partnership with Regal Assets, an alternative asset investment company with corporate headquarters in Waco, Texas.

I could not verify Regal Assets or its CEO, Tyler Gallagher, as being registered with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority or the SEC. Unregistered firms are not subject to the rules, regulations, or oversight governing licensed U.S. broker/dealers and registered investment advisers.

Regal Assets touts Bitcoin as an alternative investment for IRA accounts (see editorial disclaimer above). IRAs buying Bitcoin is an exercise requiring several steps. First, you need to establish a self-directed IRA if you don’t already have one. You’ll also need to establish an IRA LLC.

The LLC will be the entity buying and selling Bitcoin for the IRA account. Honestly, I wasn’t able to figure out how to use the Encrypto watch and USB key to buy and sell Bitcoin for an IRA account. There’s probably a way, but it escaped me.

One more thing about investing in Bitcoin for your IRA: you cannot transfer any Bitcoins you now own directly into your IRA LLC. You must first sell it, transfer the dollars into your IRA LLC, then buy back the Bitcoins for benefit of your IRA account. The same procedure follows for a Roth IRA.

The Vanguard Encrypto is a limited-edition watch of just 500 units of each version available online. Franck Muller accepts credit cards, bank transfers, or payment in Bitcoin. It is available both online and at the Franck Muller boutique in the Dubai Mall.

Chronoswiss gently enters the Bitcoin market

Chronoswiss, founded in Munich in 1983 and now under Swiss ownership, hopes to up its cool index by slipping into Bitcoin’s updraft. The company will produce just 100 Flying Regulator Open Gear Blockchain watches, and it already accepts payment for watches ordered in its online webshop in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Blockchain

The three-dimensional regulator-style dial’s top level boasts very mechanical-looking funnel-like subdial frames for displays of hours and seconds together with obvious, skeletonized bridges bracing some visible gear wheels.

The dial’s bottom level features a galvanic black background with multi-logo print of Bitcoin along with the Bitcoin logo inside the subdial for the seconds.

This is a beautifully crafted watch. Chronoswiss’ Caliber C.299, which is based on an automatic ETA movement with hacking seconds and a modified regulator gear train, hums along inside the 16-piece stainless steel case coated with black DLC. The strap is equally high-end in hand-sewn black hornback crocodile. The price is 8,356.55 Swiss francs.

Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Blockchain

Unlike Franck Muller’s Vanguard Encrypto, for now this Chronoswiss model is not interactive with either blockchain or Bitcoin. In other words, its logo references to Bitcoin are just for show.

However, the company does have a relationship with Tech Bureau, a fintech and cryptocurrency company in Japan, the U.S., and Europe. Tech Bureau has developed Mijin, a private blockchain software, and Zaif, a Bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchange platform. With this strategic relationship, there just may be a future Chronoswiss watch offering that actually uses blockchain and/or Bitcoin technology.

A. Favre & Fils

A. Favre & Fils has offered Swiss watches off and on for something like three centuries, beginning with a certain Abraham Favre, who found a calling in watchmaking in 1718. A 2008 refounding of the firm was actuated by 46-year-old Laurent Favre.

The Swiss firm just announced it is developing a handcrafted mechanical timepiece with a built-in crypto cold wallet and a proprietary security solution using blockchain technology.

The recently announced, but not yet seen, Bitcoin watch by A. Favre & Fils

The new watch was scheduled for release before the end of June 2019 according to a press release, but none of the Quill & Pad team has seen it yet. The company’s press release says the watch will, “guarantee [the] ultimate in data security and privacy protection.”

The price is quoted as $102,000 – $153,000. No price quote in Bitcoin since the conversion rate moves so fast.

Unfortunately, the company hasn’t offered any further details on how the crypto wallet works. The image above was shown as a teaser without authentication of it being the final design of the new blockchain watch. We’ll have to wait and see.

Hublot

Hublot seems to be proceeding cautiously into the Bitcoin world with a first step being the 210-piece limited edition Big Bang MECA-10 P2P (peer-to-peer, the type of payment enabled by Bitcoin). Why the 210-piece limit? It’s a reference to the maximum global limit of 21 million Bitcoins.

Hublot Big Bang MECA-10 P2P

The watch can only be purchased online and paid for using Bitcoins. It does not interact with blockchain nor offer any sort of offline deep cold storage wallet oozing Bitcoins. However, it does have the transaction number engraved on the bezel edge.

This, coupled with the purchase exclusively using Bitcoins, produces an indelible blockchain record. It serves as a digital verification of authenticity rather than a traditional and less reliable serial number appearing on a paper sales receipt and warranty card.

Hublot Big Bang MECA-10 P2P

Hublot’s MECA-10 line carries the brand’s Big Bang “DNA.” It is big, sporting a 45 x 15.95 mm case made of microblasted black ceramic. The skeletonized HUB1201 manually wound movement has a power reserve of ten days (would be nice if that were in honor of Bitcoin’s tenth anniversary, but this astonishingly long serial power reserve is represented by the “10” in the “MECA-10” line) that is shown on the 6 o’clock subdial. The Bitcoin logo appears at the 3 o’clock position.

A true nod to Bitcoin’s anniversary comes from the only Arabic numeral hour marker on the dial: the 10.

The unique case back shows an engraved world map upon which blue dots connect throughout the various countries depicted. This is a reference to the world’s interconnectivity fostered by blockchain and using Bitcoin as the international currency of choice. The MECA-10 is water resistant to 100 meters and comes only in black microblasted ceramic with blue elements.

Hublot Big Bang Meca-10 P2P

The rubber-and-calfskin strap boasts an embossed circuit board design as an homage to blockchain, networks, and interconnected computers.

The cost of this latest piece from Hublot – paid in Bitcoins, whose value fluctuates by the second – is approximately the equivalent of $25,000.

Quick Facts Franck Muller Vanguard Encrypto

Case: 45 mm or 38 mm; choice of stainless steel, brushed titanium, carbon fiber, polished pink gold, diamond setting; case back is engraved with Bitcoin logo

Dial: diamond-set Bitcoin logo, diamond-set circuit board pattern, or no diamonds; QR code at 12 o’clock

Movement: automatic Caliber FM 0800 (ETA base), with 42-hour power reserve, 4 Hz/28,800 vph frequency

Functions: hours, minutes, seconds; date (45 mm version), Bitcoin/blockchain functionality

Price: $10,780-$55,880 (45 mm version), $9,800-$38,500 (38 mm version)

More information: www.franckmullerencrypto.com

Quick Facts Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Blockchain Series

Case: 41 x 13.85 mm, DLC-coated stainless steel

Movement: automatic Caliber C.299 (ETA base), with 42-hour power reserve, 4 Hz/28,800 vph frequency

Functions: hours, minutes, hacking seconds (regulator style)

Limitation: 100 pieces

Price: 8,356.55 Swiss francs

More information: www.blockchainseries.ch

Quick Facts Hublot Big Bang MECA-10 P2P

Case: 45 x 15.95 mm, black ceramic

Movement: manually wound Caliber HUB1201, with 10-day power reserve, 4 Hz/28,800 vph frequency

Functions: hours, minutes, seconds; power reserve indication, power reserve warning indicator

Limitation: 210 pieces

Price: €23,800

More information: www.hublot.com/en/collection/big-bang/big-bang-meca-10-p2p-45mm

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Navigating The Grey Market: A Retail Expert Explains The Whys And Wherefores

Hublot Big Bang MECA-10: A Shift In Consciousness

My Trip Back To The Beginning And Watch Mecca: Franck Muller Vanguard Gravity

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IRS takes on cryptocurrencies

The Internal Revenue Service is going after more than 10,000 cryptocurrency holders who failed to report income and pay taxes, and not a single …

The Internal Revenue Service is going after more than 10,000 cryptocurrency holders who failed to report income and pay taxes, and not a single person should be surprised.

Skirting the law isn’t a bug in bitcoin, ethereum, litecoin or any of the other thousands of virtual currencies on the internet. It’s a feature.

Shady behavior and criminal activity have been part of the appeal and intrinsic value of cryptocurrencies since inception. As I reported back in 2013 following bitcoin’s value first surpassing $900 (it now sits above $10,000), researchers established a link between the first bitcoins mined and Ross William Ulbricht, the creator of the criminal black market website Silk Road. Mr. Ulbricht is now serving a life sentence for money laundering, computer hacking, conspiracy to traffic narcotics over the Internet and conspiracy to traffic fraudulent identity documents.

Bitcoin was the only currency allowed on Silk Road, where 70% of sales were drugs. Copycat black markets on the dark web — where people can buy weapons, stolen credit cards, child pornography and even assassinations — similarly conduct business in cryptocurrency.

And don’t forget ransomware attacks, where criminal hackers take control of a computer system and threaten to erase everything unless the victim pays a ransom in, you guessed it, bitcoin.

(More: Fed Chairman Powell has ‘serious concerns’ about Facebook Libra)

Even previous attempts to legitimize cryptocurrencies as a viable investment vehicle have met setbacks. Charlie Shrem, a founding member of the Bitcoin Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the reputation of cryptocurrencies, was sentenced to two years in prison in 2014 for using bitcoin to send money to Silk Road.

Cryptocurrency’s meteoric rise in value and popularity among consumers has only helped to attract grifters looking to take advantage.

Even cryptocurrency enthusiasts like Tyrone Ross, managing partner of NobleBridge Wealth Management, urges investors to keep a critical mind.

“I don’t think you can go beyond five [cryptocurrencies] that are credible, but you’re even stretching at that point. Most of the conversations right now revolve around Ether or bitcoin,” Mr. Ross said. “I’ll be honest with you, as I’ve grown more bullish, I’ve grown more skeptical … I’ve seen what happens when the price rises.”

Yet advocates don’t believe the technology’s history of abetting crime should stop Wall Street from embracing cryptocurrency. As proponents like to point out, criminals using cash doesn’t harm the value of the U.S. dollar.

In fact, they see the IRS’s enforcement as just another step towards credibility. Even though old-school cryptocurrency users tend to have libertarian “taxation is theft” leanings, more of the crypto community realizes it has to play by the rules if wants to be sustainable.

(More: Fidelity to start trading bitcoin)

“I think it’s a good thing. I think it’s something that the institutional investors on the sidelines want to see,” before diving into crypto assets, Mr. Ross said. “If you’re in this space full time like I am, you do see a lot of things that make you think the market is maturing.”

Hunter Horsley, CEO of Bitwise, an asset management firm developing index funds of crypto assets, said that it is “factually inaccurate” that a primary value of cryptocurrency is that it’s for nefarious purposes. In fact, it’s inferior for criminal activity than cash, he said.

“While its origins were in some of the darkest parts of the Internet, that is no longer the case,” Mr. Horsley said. “I sort of view [the IRS action] as a positive step in the maturation of the industry, like we are experiencing in many other parts of crypto.”

Yet even he will admit the presence of bad actors in the crypto space. For Mr. Horsley and Mr. Ross, the presence of grifters looking to take advantage of cryptocurrencies’ buzz is just proof of why financial advisers need to understand the space.

Because despite its dark past, crypto is here to stay, Mr. Ross said. The fact the IRS is acting to ensure it gets a piece is only more proof.

Now it’s up to advisers to cross the T’s, dot the I’s, and make sure clients don’t break the rules.

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