One of 2017’s hotly tipped altcoins, Ripple, looks to be making waves again after its price dipped below the $0.50 mark. For those holding XRP, the days when a single coin was worth upwards of $3.30 seem like a distant memory. However, for speculators looking to invest in Ripple, the latest downswing could be the start of another bull run. In fact, as the XRP fanboys and girls on Reddit’s r/Ripple noted back in January, the price had to stabilise at some point.
Today, it seems as though we’re in the midst of this recalibration after the lunacy of 2017. This, in theory, should mean two things. Firstly, if Ripple is the breakthrough technology it claims to be, the price should naturally rise, albeit at a steadier rate that it has done so far. Secondly, once the casual investors or opportunists start to see an upswing, the hype will return and a second pump will happen as everyone looks to buy Ripple.
Ripple’s Waves Rock Boats but Don’t Capsize Them
At its core, Ripple differs slightly from other cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin in that it’s more of a payment network with its own coin, rather than a coin used to pay for goods and services. When Ripple went live in 2012, it had the aim of becoming an “all-in-one gross settlement system for real-time transactions”. By creating a distributed ledger network, RippleNet is able to validate transactions via multiple nodes rather than one central authority. By opening up the network and allowing banks and financial institutions to by connecting to a system, Ripple is essentially speeding up financial transfers. This inclusive attitude is one of the main reasons people have been keen to invest in Ripple. Because the underlying technology is seeking to improve an existing system (i.e. bank transactions) rather than replace it (which is part of Bitcoin’s aim), big businesses have been eager to back it.
As events of the last 12 months have shown, the political, legal and corporate forces of this world have a lot of power over the cryptocurrency market. The best example of this came in September 2017 when reports emerged that China was shutting down local exchanges. With the government seemingly not onboard with the idea of cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin and many of its altcoin peers saw their fortunes fall. While crypto purists want to uphold the ideals of anonymity and removing power from governments, the reality is somewhat different. For any cryptocurrency to succeed, it requires mainstream acceptance. To major corporations, Ripple is a piece of technology that doesn’t have the same “rogue” status. Although it wants to shake-up the banking system, it wants to do it in a cooperative way rather than a combative way.
Backing from Banks Continues to Buoy Ripple Price
For those looking to make a Ripple prediction, it’s this attitude that will see it become a valuable commodity over the next decade. Already the likes of Santander, UBS and UniCredit have looked at how they can use this technology to enhance their current systems. In June of 2018, rumours began to circulate that the central banks of New Zealand and Australia could soon be willing to embrace Ripple. To anyone monitoring the Ripple price index, this is clearly another positive. While the cautious will wait for any concrete announcements, the optimistic should already be clamouring to buy Ripple. With the Ripple price chart on social trading platform eToro showing a consistent downswing since June 14, now could be the time to invest. Given that the price has dropped below $0.50, which is almost $3 less than it was in February 2018, there is clearly room to make a profit.
Although some have suggested that Alipay, a new Ripple-like service from Alibaba and Standard Chartered, could hurt XRP’s value, others will see it as validation of the product. When the iPhone revolutionised the smartphone world, every major tech company looked to follow suit. For Ripple, copycat products could actually help boost its appeal in the coming years. Naturally, there is never a guarantee when it comes to investment, especially in the crypto space. However, for those wanting a golden opportunity, this could be the time to buy Ripple. The price is low and the technology is still appealing for major financial institutions. Indeed, if we forget the madness of 2017, this asset has a lot of potential. We might not be ready to make a firm Ripple prediction at this point. However, the sings are positive and, as an investor, that’s the often the best we can hope for.