Ripple is a relatively new way of monetary transfer that has been dubbed by some in the tech world as “Crypto 2.0”. This is because it builds a more secure layer on top of existing financial systems, including both crypto and fiat (USD, GBP, YEN, etc). Let’s take a look at how it all works, and whether Ripple might be an emerging success story.
- 1 What is Ripple?
- 2 Ripple Wallets
- 3 Buy Ripple
But where do you start if you’re interested in investing or buying Ripple? How does Ripple work and what are the advantages of it compared to Bitcoin? Where do you store your XRP and how do you buy them? For many new investors and users of Ripple it all sounds way too tricky to start. Fortunately that’s not true at all, and you will soon learn that working with Ripple is very easy and very similar to what you are used to.
WHY DID WE MAKE THIS GUIDE?
Ripple has been around since 2012 and has since made huge leaps in popularity, functionality and value. More and more people are therefore choosing to transfer part of their income to Ripple and many other coins as the crypto currency market grows
However there is a lot of confusion around the similarities between Ripple and other Cryptocurrencies in general. Many people have no idea what the network is used for or where to start. Others are confused between the similarities between Ripple and other crypto coins. And some are afraid that investing, buying and working with Ripple requires a huge technical background.
The good news is that many of these concerns and questions are not needed, and have been answered / or misplaced. You’ll soon find that working, paying and receiving money within the Ripple network is not only simple, but easier and faster than you think! Once the first step is taken you will soon notice how intuitive the network is and how easy it is to make transactions within the network.
In addition, you will also understand what makes Ripple so popular and you will soon become more familiar with all the ins and outs of this cryptocurrency.
The purpose of this guide is to help you with your first steps! We have created this guide to show you how to make your first purchase of XRP, the currency of Ripple, and help you with the choices you can make on your way. We will also discuss aspects of Ripple such as:
- Ripple wallets, what types are there and how do you choose the best?
- How you can invest in Ripple. Which brokers are reliable?
- How do you ensure that you use your XRP safely?
- What the differences are between Ripple and other coins.
HOW SHOULD YOU USE THIS GUIDE?
Firstly, we would strongly recommend that you bookmark this page in your browser, that way you can always use this as a reference if you have any questions.
This guide is divided into a number of chapters that each describe an aspect of Ripple. In other words, each chapter is a mini manual in itself!
For this reason you can choose how exactly you go through the Ripple guide. If you are completely new to the world of cryptocurrencies, we strongly advise you to go through the entire manual once.
Do you already have a strong idea of how and what a blockchain is and you are not completely new in this world. Then you can safely jump to the chapter that is most relevant to your question.
Important: If you are looking for the best place to buy Ripple, you can go straight to chapter 3.
What is Ripple?
As the world of crypto currency continues to grow, there is a real desire among enthusiasts in the community to weed out the failures and focus on the successes. Everyone in the community wants to be the next Bitcoin or Ethereum, but the truth is that the next “big thing” will probably be nothing like Bitcoin , heck it may not even be a cryptocurrency.
Ripple is an open-source, decentralised exchange, sound familiar? The beauty of XRP is that it enables users to trade practically anything of value with each other, such as bitcoin, litecoin, dollars, euros, gold bars, you name it. This is assuming the two users trust each other and agree on the terms of the transaction.
A example of this is, if Dave wants to trade 13,000 GBP for Sophie’s 1 BTC, that can be done directly if both users agree and trust each other. But what if Sophie wants euros instead of pounds? Then the Ripple network will search for a euro-trading intermediary, automatically, between Dave and Sophie. Dave’s 13k GBP will then be converted to 14,647 EUR, which is then given to Sophie in exchange for her 1 BTC. This process can include as many intermediaries, exchanges and different currencies as necessary to complete the trade, and it all happens under the hood according to the protocol defined by Ripple.
These trades are recorded on a public ledger, that is shared across the entire network. This is similar to how Bitcoin’s blockchain works, however, while the blockchain in bitcoin takes up to 10 minutes to completely verify a transaction, the Ripple network only takes 2-5 seconds. This short waiting time is achieved through a consensus process, and doesn’t rely on miners to verify currency transactions, as is the case with Bitcoin.
While the protocol within Ripple itself is decentralised, it is wholly dependent on entities known as “gateways”. These gateways act as the entry and exit points for users and their money. Gateways essentially act as an intermediary system between a user’s bank and the Ripple network, similar to how Coinbase is an intermediary for Bitcoin. This is where peer-to-peer trust and anti-money-laundering laws come into play, as Ripple users must provide identity and proof-of-residence documents before getting approved by a gateway. Once that happens, the user can insert funds to the Ripple network and start trading. A gateway will also be necessary again if the user wants to withdraw funds into their bank.
Adoption by the Banking System
While the banking system has been slow to adopt the Ripple protocol, there is no doubt that real-time, fast worldwide payments are the future. Therefore the Ripple platform gives banks a huge advantage both over their competition and makes them more money at the end of the day. Ripple is focused on an “Internet of Value”, meaning that money transfers should move as quickly and fluidly as information does in the technological age. With Ripple, there is no reason to pay a fortune and wait days when transferring money globally, it should be as instant as sending a text message.
A few banks have already embraced the technological prowess of the Ripple platform including, Santander, Axis Bank, Yes Bank, Westpac, Union Credit, NBAD, and many more. According to Ripple Labs, banks can save an average of $3.76 per payment by using their protocol and considering that banks perform thousands or perhaps millions of transactions like this every year, this can represent potentially millions in savings.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between Ripple and Bitcoin?
The main difference between Ripple and Bitcoin is that Ripple is not mined. Upon is release, all Ripple were released. While not all XRP have been released into the market, they are being released slowly by Ripple Labs
Are you anonymous within Ripple?
Unlike other crypto currencies, you are not anonymous within the Ripple Network, this is to help adoptions within banks and money-laundering laws. The point of ripple is cost-efficiency not anonymity.
Where do you buy Ripple?
Ripple can be bought from an exchange such as Binance. No idea how it works? Then read the chapter about buying and selling Ripple in our manual.
In this next section you will learn about the best Ripple wallet for your particular wants and needs.
The first step before you want to buy Ripple is to decide on how you’re going to store your currency and wallet you will need.
If you’re unfamiliar of the concept of cryptocurrency, you’re probably going to ask yourself … a wallet? Why would a digital currency such as Ripple need a wallet? Believe it or not, storing your Ripple in a personal wallet is probably the safest way to use and store your currency. We would strongly advised to transfer your XRP directly to a wallet after you have purchased them from a trading platform. If you choose to leave your Ripple with a platform you continually run the risk of the platform going bankrupt, offline or worse of all, hacked. This means that you’re at a higher risk of losing your Ripple forever.
Of course, let’s be honest, the chance of this happening is very small, but it’s not too difficult to set up a wallet. So there should be no excuse for not having your own wallet for your valuable XRP.
What is a Ripple wallet
A Ripple wallet is a digital wallet for your XRP (funnily enough!). Just like Ripple are a digital form of physical money, much like money in a bank account, a Ripple wallet is a digital translation of a physical wallet, just with more security measures.
In a Ripple wallet you can create and manage addresses. A Ripple address is similar to a bank account number that you would get from your bank. But as we discussed in chapter one Ripple is decentralised, so it does not have a central manager (so in this case a bank) that does that for you! So you can make addresses yourself, that is all in contrast to your bank, free of charge. You can also make as many addresses as you want!
A Ripple address consists of a private key and a public key that both contain a series of numbers and letters. And they look like this: “1KV2ybMT5vUmEepogj5F75si1ob455zade”. The public key is what you give to a person or organisation that you want to receive Ripple from. The private key is what you use to send/spend Ripple. It’s important that you ensure that your private key is always safe and not visible to others, otherwise people can use this private key to steal your ripple by transferring it to another location.
The way this works is almost identical to how you would do it with a traditional bank account. The only difference is that you have two special addresses for sending or receiving Ripple and you manage the transfer yourself. If you want to receive Ripple, all you have to do is give your public key to the person or broker in question. A nice extra in terms of technology is that you can often make payment by sending or scanning a QR-CODE to perform these actions.
Types of Ripple wallets
There are 5 types of Ripple wallets to choose from, and this can certainly become a bit overwhelming when you first step into the world of Cryptocurrency. But don’t worry, that’s what this guide’s for! So let’s look at what you can choose from:
‘Cold’ and ‘Hot’ Ripple wallets
Before we dive into what types of wallets are available to choose from. It’s wise to explain what is meant by ‘cold storage’ and ‘hot storage’ in relation to Ripple wallets. These are terms that you will often encounter while you’re making your decision!
All types of Ripple wallets can always be classified in Hot or Cold wallets.
Cold Ripple wallets
Cold Ripple wallets are physical wallets that are not connected to the internet. You usually have the currency in your hands, in the form of a USB stick, for example. As a result, this way of storage is often considered the most safe.
Cold storage wallets are more suitable for the long-term holders of Ripple that will be holding their currency for months or years. Similar to a savings account!
Hardware Ripple wallets are considered the safest way to store your currency. A hardware wallet is basically a small computer or smart card that is specifically built for generating Ripple private keys offline.
HARDWARE RIPPLE WALLETS
Hardware wallets are a form of cold storage and are the best way to store your ripple for an extended period of time. We would strongly recommend that if you own a large amount of ripple, that you can transfer your balance to cold storage.
Hardware Ripple wallets are aimed at owners who want to store a large quantity for a long term period. Hardware Ripple wallets also don’t require you to trust in a third party, which is the case with almost all other wallets!
Because of the popularity of these types of wallets and that of Ripple, there are more and more options every year when it comes to these types of wallets. At the moment, however, there are 3 wallets that are clearly performing the best, and are therefore the most popular with Ripple holders.
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If you are not a fan of all that technology, then it’s also possible to go for the old-fashioned storage as a wallet. Just like a hardware wallet, this is a safe offline method of storage, and it also makes a fantastic gift!
The idea of a Ripple card is fairly simple. You can order your ripple card of various website These types of websites offer you the option to generate a wallet with your own private and public key and their respective QR code. You can then order it and have it sent to you!
You can use the public key (or the QR code) to set up Ripple, or the private key to extract Ripple from it.
The advantage of a Ripple Card is that it is not only simple, it’s free of charge and like we said, would look great as a gift for somebody.
The disadvantage is the physical card can be stolen and used (stealing a hardware wallet is useless without the password). But can degrade over time and you could lose your Ripple to time itself. Not good considering digital is meant to last forever.
Hot Ripple wallets
Hot Ripple wallets are are connected to the internet, on the cloud or on a computer. As a result, they immediately have a big advantage over “cold” wallets for their ease of use. You can have easy access to your wallet and therefore you can make and receive payments much faster.
The disadvantage is that this form of storage does reduce the safety of your Ripple. The reason for this is actually very simple, you trust a third party. If something goes wrong because there is a leak in their system and they are hacked by this; as is your wallet and it’s ultimately not safe there.
Because of this, “warm” wallets are more suitable for smaller amounts of Ripple.
RIPPLE DESKTOP WALLET
A desktop Ripple wallet is designed to be downloaded and installed on a computer, tablet or laptop. They are both “hot” and “cold” in the sentences that they are usable on computers that the can be connected and disconnected to the internet.
A desktop wallet has some drawbacks; namely that it is only accessible on the computers on which they’re installed. In addition, it also has the extra risk that there is a possibility that a virus hacks your wallet.
Installing The Ripple Wallet
Now we’re going to talk about how to download and install one of the most popular desktop wallets for Ripple, Rippex. Firstly you need to go here and download the installation file, for a windows computer you will need to download the .exe installation file, for mac you will need to .dmg.
2. CREATE A NEW ACCOUNT
Once your file has installed the next step will be to create a new account. When you create your new account, the first step will ask you to create a wallet file on your computer. Make sure you save this in a safe and memorable place. Once that file has been saved back it up on multiple external devices. If you lose this file, you will lose you wallet and your XRP.
Once your wallet file has been created, you will then be asked to encrypt this.We recommend that you choose a phrase as a password that you can easily remember. An example of such a password is “Thisisareallygoodpw.”; this example would take a computer two years to crack.
5. MAKE A NOTE OF YOUR ADDRESSES
You will now be shown your account info. Make a note of your Ripple wallet addresses, as this is obviously important for sending and reciving
Also, take note of the secret key. This is a very important piece of information, with this key anyone can access your wallet, from any computer in the world. It’s meant as the ultimate fail-safe to stop you losing access to your coins.
Store this secret key somewhere safe from prying eyes.
Once you have, click ‘Yes, I saved my secret key’.
6. DEPOSIT YOUR XRP
Congratulations, you have now setup your Ripple wallet and are ready to deposit your first coins. As a security precaution, Ripple Labs recommend that you add 25 or more XRP as your first amount, this enables security fail-safes that keep your coins extra-safe.
RIPPLE ONLINE WALLET
There are more and more Ripple wallets available that operate on a cloud or online.
Of course there is a clear advantage to these hot wallets, your Ripple is always easily accessible and a lot of trouble is handled by a third party! This is often the best option for keeping Ripple in small quantities that you are actively using or trading. The easiest online wallet and trading system to use for Ripple currently is Binance.
RIPPLE MOBILE WALLET
What if you don’t often have regular access to you computer but use your mobile more often? No worries, there is a wallet available to store your Ripple.
Besides the dexterity, you are also able to use your mobile camera to easily make payments through the QR codes!
Ripple wallets for your mobile are rather like mini-wallets. It would cost an incredible amount of data usage if your mobile phone constantly had to update from Ripple Labs.
This makes it possible to simply make and receive payments on your mobile phone without taking up a lot of memory.
The disadvantage is of course that you have to rely on a third party.
We strongly recommend not keeping large amounts of Ripple on “hot” wallets for a long time, but there is nothing wrong with using smaller amounts.
Ripple debit card
If you just want to do your shopping, an online or mobile wallet is not yet convenient enough to make transactions in the normal marketplace. It is certainly possible to use a debit card for your Ripple and use it to make purchases in a store. Just like you would with your normal bank card!
Is that something for you? Then check out SnapSwap, who recently released a pre-paid Ripple Debit Card.
How do I safely use my XRP?
Good encryption is half the work
Most wallets offer the possibility to encrypt them with a password. Make sure you choose a secure password that can not be easily guessed or hacked. Hackers are able to crack a lot of passwords with computers. Contrary to popular belief, in the world of cybersecurity there is no complexity of a password that counts; but the length!