What is Dash?
Put simply, Dash operates on a similar blockchain network as Bitcoin, having forked from the original cryptocurrency. A blend of the words ‘digital’ and cash’, Dash coin has become one of the most talked about altcoins in recent months. It was originally launched under the name ‘XCoin’, before being altered to ‘Darkcoin’. This name had some people affiliate the token with the 'Dark Web' however, and so the company re-branded once more, to Dash.
Arguably, the biggest benefit of the Dash coin is that transactions can be sent anonymously, similar to fiat cash payments. This is achieved by using a mixing protocol, which operates an exclusive network of servers, known as Masternodes. While Bitcoin operates only a single-tier network of miners, Dash uses these Masternodes as an additional layer for its network, removing the need for trusted third-parties to authorise transactions that could potentially compromise the anonymity of any payment.
Another key differentiator between Dash and Bitcoin is that the former splits mining reward between its mining community, participants who hold a specified amount of Dash, and a long-term development fund intended for the entire Dash community.
Why was Dash Invented?
There are three key issues that Dash coin was designed to solve – lack of privacy, sluggish transaction speeds and overall governance. Bitcoin is only capable of handling seven transactions each second. When you consider that Visa authorises 24,000 transactions within the same amount of time, it’s clear that cryptocurrencies still have some way to go before usurping traditional payment methods.
However, if you’ve always wondered what is Dash about, let’s outline the ways in which this new altcoin attempts to address those three problems that have been endemic throughout the crypto space. We’ve already touched upon the Masternodes, which help to facilitate the instant transfer of funds. It’s also important to discuss the PrivateSend functionality which is an in-built coin mixing model that enhances transaction anonymity and threatens to outperform comparable altcoins like Monero and Zcash for privacy.
Finally, Dash coin decentralises its overall governance across its entire network of participants. Any individual on the Dash network can propose new features and amendments to improve the general infrastructure. Each proposal is then voted on by the 'Masternodes'. Providing there are more voting 'yes' than ‘no’, the proposals can go forward and receive funding from the Dash block reward.
Is Dash Real Money?
Dash is real money in every sense of the word and more besides. It is real money in that it holds monetary value and can be exchanged for goods and services. Moreover, its very design creates a democratic system of commerce that is a faster more efficient mode of payment than many of the outdated legacy systems that are still in use today. Its PrivateSend function allows for payments to be made with the same level of anonymity as offered by dealing with cash.
The Team Behind Dash
The senior figureheads behind Dash are appointed by the network and funded monthly by its blockchain to evolve the technological fundamentals of Dash. Ryan Taylor is the network’s CEO. Taylor is an expert in the payments industry, with more than 15 years of expertise in the fintech sector.
Dash Core Group Inc. manages the maintenance and development of the Dash token, but there are various other organisations and individuals that aren’t officially listed on the Dash website that hold authority on the Dash network as well.
How does DASH Work?
What is Dash and how does its blockchain operate? In fact, it works similarly to the Bitcoin blockchain, but with several notable enhancements. Dash users can optionally choose PrivateSend when sending Dash to another user. This function masks the origin and destination address of Dash transactions.
Another improvement is the ability to make InstantSend payments. These cost slightly more than normal transactions but are executed immediately. The Dash network adds a further layer of efficiency and security with Masternodes. Masternodes are run by participants in the network that hold a minimum amount of Dash and facilitate InstantSend and PrivateSend transactions. These participants also decide on the direction of new and future developments.
These three features are considered significant improvements over Bitcoin by many crypto enthusiasts. While the Bitcoin protocol doesn’t disclose the names of wallet holders, the wallet addresses are publicly visible. That means a wallet address and a name can sometimes be linked based on transaction histories and so, fails to offer true anonymity. Bitcoin is also limited when it comes to making small everyday payments – a limitation that InstantSend overcomes.
Dash uses a hybrid Proof-of-Work/Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism. Mining rewards are split 45%/45%/10% between miners, Masternodes and development grants. This contrasts with Bitcoin, where 100% of mining rewards go to miners. Dash has a slightly lower maximum supply to Bitcoin, of 18.9 million coins. As of February 2020, just over 9.3 million Dash coins have been brought into circulation, with all 18.9 million expected to be mined by around the year 2050.
There is a wide range of compatible desktop wallets available on the official Dash website. Aside from these, the site also lists a number of hardware wallet options including Ledger, SafePal and Trezor. Mobile wallets available include, Coinomi, Jaxx Liberty and Edge ,among others. Dash is listed on most major exchanges, where Dash can be bought, sold or exchanged for Euros, Dollars and other major currencies.
If you still remain a little sceptical of Dash, you'll be heartened to hear that Dash coin has already teamed up with Amazon to offer Dash owners the chance to get 15% discounts on gift cards. Car sales firms in California have also begun to accept Dash for all of their services, while some fertility clinics are also offering 10% discounts on a host of their services for using the Dash token. It is clear Dash has the scope and capability to become the next-generation digital cash for everyday consumer goods and services.
Can Dash be Used Anonymously?
As has been stated throughout the article, the ability to make anonymous payments is part of Dash's very design. The PrivateSend feature allows for completely untraceable transactions, although these may take longer depending on network congestion and cost a little more.
How does Dash Compare to Bitcoin?
Bitcoin was the original cryptocurrency that helped shape the future of digital assets, but as the Bitcoin community expanded and the range of crypto coins grew, Bitcoin’s shortcomings quickly came to the fore. The creation of Dash coin was based around a desire to create a new cryptocurrency that wasn’t hamstrung by Bitcoin’s weaknesses.
Subsequently, Dash became the first self-governed, self-funded cryptocurrency in the industry. While Bitcoin takes up to ten minutes to propagate a block and complete a transaction, Dash sends and confirms transactions within a matter of seconds. Furthermore, owners of Dash coin have the unique ability to make their transactions anonymous if they wish. That’s unlike Bitcoin users whose transactions can technically be traced back to them.
Dash Transaction Fees and Charges
The fees associated with Dash are extremely low and have been a main attraction to people wishing to use and trade in cryptocurrency. What is noteworthy is that the low fees for Dash have also held stead for a very long time. This consistency is a very good sign for the rapidly growing token.
How Can You Get DASH?
If you’ve read enough and you’re already wondering how to get Dash coin, you’re in luck – there are plenty of ways to get your hands on it.
You Can Buy It
You can buy Dash either through an exchange or a CFD provider, both have their pluses but for security reasons, we tend to lean towards CFD providers because we only recommend those who are regulatory compliant. Buying the coin itself also works, but just make sure that the exchange you choose has a good reputation, see our list for details.
You Can Trade It
Furthermore, as trading platforms like eToro make it easy to open and close CFD positions, retail traders can take short-term positions on assets like Dash and make a profit within a matter of minutes. The well-regulated eToro platform displays statistics and up-to-date trading charts to enable cryptocurrency enthusiasts to pinpoint support and resistance areas in the Dash coin market. You can trade Dash on the large exchanges as well. Binance and Coinexchange are two that offer this capability.
You Can Mine It
It is also possible to mine Dash. Miners help to secure the Dash network by validating transactions and creating new blocks to be linked to the Dash blockchain. It has to be said that mining Dash is a highly competitive industry to get into, as with most forms of cryptocurrency mining. You’ll need an ASIC miner in order to successfully profit these days, as CPU and GPU mining is no longer viable.
Get it for Free!
One of the similarities between Bitcoin and Dash is that they both offer faucets that enable people to obtain small amounts of crypto for free. Faucets require users to solve captchas and complete minor tasks to be rewarded with Dash tokens.
How to Store DASH
Of course, as with Bitcoin, it’s important for owners of Dash to be able to store their digital assets securely and reliably in a cryptocurrency wallet. The best Dash wallets are the hardware wallets such as the Trezor and Ledger Nano S that allow users to store high volumes of Dash offline, with no threat of losing their funds to cyber-crime. Jaxx is also becoming a popular desktop and mobile wallet that supports Dash. Users’ private keys always remain on their primary device for additional security.
However, as previously discussed, trading the price of Dash using a platform as reputable as eToro may be preferable if you don’t want the hassle of setting up and maintaining your crypto wallet. Our full eToro review explains why trading Dash is a simpler and quicker process. 24Option is also a solid choice as this is another company that adheres to regulatory standards.
DASH Price, Market Cap & Supply
At the time of writing (February, 2020), the price of Dash is hovering around $120. Its market cap is subsequently valued at just over $1 billion, while the available supply of Dash coin stands at around 9.31 million out of an entire 18.9 million coins.
DASH Advantages & Disadvantages
√ Small transactions can be settled almost instantly
√ Dash owners given the option of making 100% anonymous transactions
√ Widespread potential real-world applications
√ Wholly decentralised and self-governed network
X PrivateSend transactions can be slow if the network lacks activity
X Scaling issues have been reported on the main Dash blockchain
X Tokens locked up by Masternodes could lead to long-term liquidity issues if Masternode owners invest their wealth elsewhere