All you need to know about Zcash

You must have heard of Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss in the whole Facebook lawsuit with Mark Zuckerberg. After having received a settlement for damages, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss went their separate ways from Mark, looked into the digital currency space and started their own cryptocurrency exchange named Gemini. Their venture has brought forth the birth of a new and revolutionary Bitcoin competitor called Zcash. Aimed at providing even more higher levels of security at a lesser price, Zcash hit the live trading floors and went active on cryptocurrency exchanges on May 22.

Having had such major names backing it, Zcash has quickly gained popularity and is being looked into more and more by numerous investors and traders all across the world. However, with every new things, many clarifications are required so that everyone is on the same page and likewise, here is a little guide to help you know almost everything there is about Zcash.

What is Zcash?

Created by the developer Zooko Wilcox in October 2016, he created Zcash to tackle the feature of Bitcoins where everyone can see all sorts of transactions going on. He was not that big a fan of this privacy breach and wanted to bring into the market something that could do away with this. Likewise, he came forth with the idea of Zcash and developed it using the blockchain technology to carry out end to end or peer to peer transactions completely and wholly anonymously. Zcash is basically a hard fork of the original solution of the Blockchain technology – Bitcoins, and along with being a revolution in the sense of providing private and highly secure transactions which no one can witness other than the two parties involved, Zcash also has the ability to carry out these transactions way faster than Bitcoins or any other digital currencies.

Previously known by the name Zerocoin, it is now called Zcash and has the symbol ‘ZEC’, an interesting feature of Zcash is that its quantity is limited or finite, just like Bitcoins, and amazingly, just like Bitcoins, only 21 million of them are available to be mined. Moreover, with the popularity it currently has and the expected exponential growth of this currency, experts have predicted that the entirety of 21 million Zcash would be completely mined by the year 2032.

The zk – SNARK Protocol

Zcash uses a phenomenal cryptographic tool or protocol called the zk – SNARK protocol, which gives its users the option to go anonymous over the network. Since Zcash by default supports similar functioning as Bitcoins, if one wishes to not have the Bitcoin like transparent transaction functionality, they can choose to go for this option. Enabling this zero knowledge proof protocol hides the information of the sender and the receiver and also hides the amount of currency being exchanged.

The zk – SNARK protocol comes with high credibility since it was developed by an esteemed team of developers and coders from several prestigious universities including Johns Hopkins University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, and Tel Aviv University in the year 2014.

Thus making use of this zero knowledge proof protocol, users of Zcash are given the option or choice to makes transactions privately or publicly.

Using Zcash

The objective that drives the Zcash team is to be able to help its users make private and anonymous transactions while also making sure that nobody is cheating. They also aim to someday become a mainstream fiat currency or a global level means of legal payments and are working hard towards that dream.

A new block on the Zcash blockchain is identified in under 2.5 minutes which is 25 times faster than the time the Bitcoin blockchain takes to identify a new block which is about 10 minutes. This makes it a very quick and fast option to choose to send and receive money because let’s face it, who really likes to wait for so long?

Everyone is aware of the transaction costs on the Bitcoin platform going up and up everyday, however, transactions and processing on Zcash takes almost next to nothing and you would not feel the pinch of paying an extra amount which is so little. Moreover, ASIC like heavy machinery is not required to mine Zcash and so virtually anyone with a GPU or CPU can easily mine Zcash without much hurdles.

Final thoughts on Zcash

Although it is not wise to make quick decisions about anything, several Zcash enthusiasts say that Zcash could in fact, in a couple years, become a legal form of payment. Moreover, with huge multinational companies like JP Morgan forming a partnership with the Zcash developers to themselves incorporate it in their systems make it a very credible venture which helps more and more people to trust it. Although this open source decentralized venture actually has a company backing it, people are concerned about the criminal activities that might take place on this platform. Only time will tell how things roll out for Zcash in the future.

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