How to get crypto currency and Bitcoin

worker bee

Hello Reader,

In the last article we explored the different types of Bitcoin wallet and took a look at some recommendations for each of them. However, having a new fangled digital wallet isn’t all that exciting if you don’t have any bitcoin to store in it!

In this article, we are going to explore the different ways that you can get hold of bitcoin (and by extension, other crypto currencies too).

There are four main ways that you can get hold of crypto currency and bitcoin:

  1. Be given a small amount via a tip or from a faucet
  2. Mine as part of a mining pool
  3. Earn bitcoin as payment for work under taken
  4. Purchase bitcoin directly

Let’s explore each of these in more detail…

Tipping and Faucets

Tipping

You may have come across users on social media platforms such as reddit.com and twitter.com sending each other digital currency tips. These work through the use of social media bots which allow users to deposit crypto currency to a tipping wallet and then give it out via the social network through commands such as “!tip @Xexr 1 bitcoin”. If you are the recipient for one of those tips, you will be directed to create your own wallet through the platform which you can then use to withdraw to your own address.

Faucets

Bitcoin faucets are websites which dispense tiny amounts of bitcoin to users. In the good old days, they would dispense as much as 1 bitcoin at a time for no more effort than clicking a button. Unfortunately price rises mean those days are long gone and modern faucets typically require you to do a certain amount of “work”, e.g. captcha’s before paying out tiny amounts of bitcoin. There are many faucets online which you can get to through google, but here is an example to give you an idea.

Mining

I’ve previously explained in detail the concept of digital currency mining in this article, so I’d recommend having a read first and coming back here.

Now for the bad news.

Bitcoin mining has been through a series of evolutions. In the early days of Bitcoin, you could mine significant amounts just by using your computers processor. As more users started mining, the difficulty (which you now understand having read the linked article… right?) increased as designed so it became harder to mine.

Then, a year of so into Bitcoin’s existence, a user wrote a piece of software which enabled mining via GPUs (graphical processing units, graphics cards). Graphics cards process information in a massively parallel fashion and so are much more efficient at mining than standard CPU’s. Once this software was in common use, difficulty increased again and you needed to purchase high performing computer rigs containing multiple GPUs to mine any reasonable amount.

But that wasn’t the end. A few years later, ASICs (application specific integrated circuits) began to appear which are built to specifically run the hashing algorithms intrinsic to mining. They do this at a massive speed increase and for a fraction of the power usage but can be used for nothing else other than Bitcoin mining. As these emerged, the difficulty continued to increase dramatically with each new generation of ASIC. At the time of writing, the most powerful ASICs are now capable of processing c. 15 terrahashes per second.

And what the hell is a terrahash, I hear you cry? Well sir, one terrahash is the calculation of 1 trillion hashes, every single second. Insansity.

So why is this bad news for you, dear aspiring miner? Unless you have the capital to purchase expensive ASIC’s, live in a country with low cost (preferably free) electricity and a cool climate you will not be able to profitably mine bitcoin.

You can of course, still mine bitcoin using your computer as part of a mining pool (where miners join to together to make earning bitcoin more consistent than individually mining and hoping for a block reward which may never come). However, you will spend more on electricity than it would cost to purchase the bitcoins directly in the first place.

Other crypto currencies are still profitable to mine, but that is the topic for another story where we will take a look at how you actually get started mining.

Working for bitcoin

Yes bitcoin is a currency and yes you can be paid directly in bitcoin (or another crypto currency). There have been many stories of people being paid their normal salary directly in bitcoin. Take a look at this article for an example.

However, you don’t have to convert your traditional salary to bitcoin to earn some on the side, we after all in the age of the gig economy and what better to way to embrace it than by getting paid in the currency of the future?

If you have a skill that’s in demand, you can use it to earn bitcoin, right now.

Take a look at some of these websites, which operate much like fiverr.com, but for Bitcoin:

  1. xbtfreelancer.com
  2. cryptogrind.com
  3. bitlancerr.com
  4. coinality.com
  5. coinmall.io

Buying Bitcoin

The most common method to acquire Bitcoin today is to purchase it directly, i.e trade fiat currency (GBP, EUR, USD etc) for bitcoins.

There are many methods of actually buying bitcoins, so this will be the subject of my next article.

What do you recommend?

If you are just experimenting, have limited skills or funds, then you can play around with a faucet or mining to acquire small amounts of Bitcoin to tickle your curiosity.

However, if you are at all serious about getting a reasonable amount, the only real options for most people today are to work for it or purchase it directly.

One more thing…

There is one more way that you can get a bit of bitcoin. As a gracious thank you for being an early visitor to my site, I’ll be giving away 0.001 Bitcoins (100,000 Satoshi or roughly $2.50 at today’s prices) to the first ten readers that…

  1. Have subscribed for updates about new articles
  2. Write a comment on this article with the email you used to subscribe

Your comment must:

  1. Introduce yourself (where are you from, what do you do, what’s a cool fact about you)
  2. Explain how you discovered crypto currency and what excites you about it
  3. State a valid bitcoin address for receipt of your shiny new satoshis

I’ll send the bitcoins out once this article has ten valid comments and link to the transaction for confirmation.

EDIT: We’ve reached ten commentators below, and they each now have their shiny new satoshi’s. However, never fear, there will be more in the future, keep checking back for news of the next giveaway!

Join me next time to learn how you to actually buy bitcoins.

That’s all folks.

If you’ve enjoyed this article, it would be my honour to have you as a regular reader. Subscribe and you won’t miss any future posts 🙂

Check out this article on Steemit

Yours, X.

38 thoughts on “How to get crypto currency and Bitcoin

  1. Hey hey hey, loved your articles so far, you write in a very comprehensible manner and explain everything rather well, your articles are definitely helping me understand how the whole crypto thing works 😀

    I’d rather not reveal where I’m from for privacy reasons, but what I can say about myself is that I’m currently attending university studying computer science. I don’t remember when exactly I first learned about crypto, but it was probably when most people learned about it when bitcoin started getting attention in the mainstream media. Since then I was kind of just aware of bitcoins and other coins, but never really found the time to learn about them in more detail, until recently. I’ve stumbled over a post from /r/ethtrader browsing reddit’s /r/all and after learning about Ethereum and it’s recent tremendous takeoff in price I’ve thought to myself: “this is the second chance you’ve probably lost at making a huge amount of money by investing early on, you should probably learn more about the currency of the future!”. And thus, here I am!

    Speaking of Ethereum, in future articles, will you focus just on bitcoin, or will you cover other big coins, like Ethereum and IOTA(which is fairly new and different from what I gather)?

    Oh and I almost forgot, my bitcoin address: 12n3qoXY92V33zzERoinpaLP2K2DxF2GTN

    1. Hi Uo42,

      Consider yourself the first person to comment directly on the site and of course you’ve bagged yourself some Bitcoin too!

      Thanks for the kind comments, it’s great to have you here and brill to hear your story.

      To answer your question – absolutely I’ll be branching out to cover different crypto currencies and applications in the near future. For now, I’m starting with Bitcoin as it is the original and a natural on ramp for most people. Look out for a post on smart contracts and then Ethereum shortly after.

      X.

      1. Cool! I’ll definitely look out for a post on smart contracts. The whole idea fascinated me ever since I read Charles Stross’ Accelerando. The idea that in the future, companies wholly based on computer code might become so big as to become semi-sentient entities on their own is really out there, and when I learned that smart contracts were a thing it definitely piqued my interest.

        1. I’ve not come across Accelerando before, I will check it out – thanks for the tip!

          Completely agree on the sentiment though, it’s a very exciting idea.

  2. Hey, very much enjoyed the article as a crypto newbie. I’m a student studying business in University. I’m from the US. Fun fact is I’ve traveled to over 30 countries.

    I discovered Crypto through a friend who is very passionate about it. I’m pretty excited for it as a new asset class beyond stocks, bonds, etc. My address is 1J8Y112M7ft5Wcs2YZtSFAf4ozstHo1YC3

    1. Hi Andrew,

      Welcome! Incredible to have visited 30 countries and still be so young.

      We do tend to become ardent advocates once we learn more about the subject, so I’m not surprised by your friend 🙂

      You’ll get some bitcoin too of course…

      X.

  3. Hi! I’m Canadian but living in Australia (which I’m beginning to find there are as many mobile wallet options compared to the other side of the world) at the moment. Just finally starting to get around the available literature because my partner was hooked and he’s been urging me to get onto it!

    I’ve only just started to invest in the ASX earlier this year and so this is part of my investment journey. Pretty apprehensive mostly because there’s so much material to cover and well, reading your blog has at least got me started with a wallet so, thank you!

    Cheers 🙂

    17YvPXFKtAUFv1BrASqD49wmB1BCCBoWpH

    1. Hi Iris,

      Thanks for commenting and welcome, it’s great to have you with us and nice to see we have such a global audience.

      You are quite right, Australia does indeed have a healthy crypto currency industry with many home grown wallets and exchanges. Personally, I’ve used coinjar.com before which is based in Australia.

      Congrats on getting your wallet setup, you are #3 of 10 so will have some shiny Bitcoins to store in it once we have 7 more commentators 🙂

      X

  4. Hi Xexr,

    I recently got to know about bitcoin from a friend who started investing 5% of his monthly income into BTC. I initially thought he was stupid and i am so wrong! I am working as a Developer at a small startup and they pay very less so looking at alternatives to save some money and clear my education loans. I am from the US.
    I saw one of your comments on the reddit thread about this site and i really like the way you are explaining so far. Already opened coinbase account! yes, uptodate with your articles 🙂 It was really helpful where to buy BTC easily when you mentioned US/EU seperately. Please do post on where we can exchange BTC to alt coins for best price.
    I bought 2 LTC from coinbase and dunno how do i convert it to other alt coins. post an article on that.

    My address: 1Bn6boKcUvVPgvvLUcogbV96wCnfQpruHu

    1. Hi Lucifer,

      Thanks for joining and thanks for the kind comments!

      Yes, I’ll be delving into the world of alt coins soon, shortly followed by how to trade between them.

      Watch this space 🙂

      You’ve also bagged some free bitcoins, they’ll be with you once we get to 10 commentators…

      X

      1. Thanks Xexr! Yay!!

        Also, I am having a hard time with the exchanges…can you please post an article on all the Available sites listing what are all the websites that accepts credit/debit cards and also the exchanges for the popular alt coins? That would be really helpful.

        Will be waiting for the BTC 😀

        Thanks,
        Lucifer

        1. Hi Lucifer, have you checked out my recent post on how to buy?

          Admittedly that is primarily focused on bitcoin, but it at least covers the on ramp into crypto currency.

          One of my upcoming posts will focus specifically on how to trade altcoins, and which exchanges are the best fit for that purpose.

          Coming soon 🙂

          X.

  5. Hey Xexr,

    I really like your articles they help alot for a newbie like me.
    I am a engineering student currently studying in France. I have known about bitcoin for few years now but never understood and put in the effort to get into it. Too bad for me I could’ve made millions hehe. I’ve also heard about other crypto currencies such as litecoin and ethereum maybe you can cover those in an article one day?
    Anyways thanks for your articles so far they are great!

    Have a nice day.

    Ps. 1NHdSFxUmAkFZ7dXDzCBUvyFffeTbo7uTk

    1. Hi B36K,

      Welcome, great to have you with us! I think we’ve all been through mental “what if” scenarios a few times over. Remember the paraphrased famous saying, “the best time to buy bitcoin was in 2009, the second best time is right now”. You may well find that people in ten years are looking back to 2017 and wishing the same thing that you do about 2009.

      To answer your question, yes, I will be getting into the mysterious world of altcoins in a few posts time. Well done on bagging yourself some bitcoins 🙂

      X.

  6. Really cool article! Me myself am new to all of this, but the more I read about it the more interested I get.

    Seems like something that could really make a change for the better!

    Here’s the address to my wallet: 1UAKqHWFKf8N85rEeJQMB3L1QkJyvyTDr

    1. Hi Snator,

      Welcome to the site, glad to have you with us. It’s definitely interesting and well worth reading about. The more you learn, the more hooked you’ll get.

      You’re #6 on the list, 4 to go until you get some bitcoins 🙂

      X.

  7. I just found your blog, and I have enjoyed every post I’ve read so far. Very well written and easy to understand for a novice. I found out about bit coin years ago but I never had any extra capital (I’m a mom of 4 and work 7 days a week to make ends meet) Recently last fall, my grandparents blessed me with some money for my children’s education fund. And because I had been watching Bitcoin for so long I decided to invest. At the time it was running about $780 USD/coin… needless to say that has been a blessing. So now that I have a bit of coin invested I wanted to find a way to invest in other cryptocurrencies and hopefully repeat the same success. I can’t wait to see what you have coming next! (I learned about Faucets today!)

    I subscribed

    here is my wallet address! (email justbarenakedtruth@gmail.com)

    13eVRmaShop9CsfPq6sfPkCBsF2EhW8G2n

    1. Hi Zee,

      Great to have you with you us and really lovely to see I am reaching people from all walks of life.

      Congrats on the recent windfall with your investment. I’d seriously consider withdrawing your initial investment at this point and putting it in a traditional investment vehicle, something like an index fund. That way you’ll have a nice little nice egg for your kids education and be able to let the rest ride the crypto high seas with no skin in the game 🙂

      A little more will soon be on its way to you too.

      X.

  8. Hey, X,

    thank you for really informative and easy to read articles!
    Am based in Eastern Europe and consider myself a newbie to all the bit and alt coins. Been a few weeks since I started to really get into more details about the coins and I kinda am fascinated. Fascinated about the blockchain technology itself. Still trying to get to know more and analyze it more so I could really understand it.

    I am a huge fan of Elon Musk, solar power, clean energy, colonising Mars and now of these coins and blockchain! 🙂
    BTW, Tesla is going to produce electric cars in China 😀

    my btc wallet address is 18y5zemtjH6GiqsEYPYY6Vn4d3VgofUdL3

    1. Hi B,

      Thanks for joining us and thanks for the kind words, wonderful to hear!

      Sounds like you’ve started on the journey that we all go through, I warn you, it grips you and pulls you in!

      I’m also a big Elon Musk fan. Check out the podcast interview with Kevin Rose, super interesting. I can’t wait to get my first Tesla 🙂

      Some Satoshi’s will be on their way to you soon to help you on your journey.

      X.

  9. Hi X,

    Thank you for taking the time to create this site and write these articles. I have known about Bitcoin for a long time now but have not trusted it enough to get involved (silly me). I am now looking to start investing each month so I am hoping your articles will help me understand how to get started and then develop my understanding and portfolio.

    I am from the UK and I am a lawyer (hence being risk averse)! As I mentioned, I’ve know about Bitcoin for a while but first found out probably through the media/Internet sources. The development and progress of crypto currencies excite me the most and hopefully I’m not too late to get involved to benefit from its growth.

    I have recently set up a wallet and my address to receive my first ever portion of Bitcoin is:
    1GWmTCQACKszPnawcG9RrcgE3ZNoVcJxza

    Thanks a lot, I will be sure to stick around to learn more about cryptocurrencies!

    1. Hi MSO,

      Welcome to the site and thank you for reading! Investing a little each month, or dollar cost averaging is a great way to get started and minimise your risk. Check out Coinbase’s regular buy feature for a really low effort way to get started.

      It sounds like we are pretty similar, I’m also from the UK, but an accountant so probably even more sceptical and protective of my money. However, crypto currency still convinced me that it has real merit.

      As a lawyer, I think you’ll find my upcoming posts on smart contracts and the far reaching applications of blockchain technology really relevant to your day to day.

      Some satoshi’s will be with you real soon as your our penultimate poster 🙂

      X.

      1. Thanks, X.

        I am certainly being drawn in by cryptocurrency at the moment! I will be looking forward to your post on smart contracts, very interesting subject.

  10. Hi there

    I’m Alex, a tech program manager in the Bay Area. Random fact, I just got into drones (DJI mavic pro is awesome!)

    I discovered crypto after doing some random investment research after being approached by a financial planner. I also heard it the news so I guess it’s pretty timely. It’s exciting because I feel like I could still be a part of history and have a story to tell the young’ns of next generation. Plus, maybe I could buy a house in SF with the earnings LOL

    I’m still learning and have a million tabs open on my browser so I haven’t created a wallet yet. Idk if you already have 10 comments though. Hopefully I will get to it soon!

    1. Hi Alex,

      Thanks for taking the time to comment, it’s really great to have you with us. I visited San Fran last year, such a cool city, I’m jealous you get to spend the whole year there!

      I haven’t had much experience with larger scale drones, but would love to give them a go some time, they look incredibly fun.

      The good news is that you’re in the land of blockchain startups, so if it does become a real passion, you will be well placed to get into the industry not long after it’s birth – a huge opportunity.

      You’re technically number ten in the comment queue, so you would qualify for some coins but you’ll need to subscribe and let me know your bitcoin address before someone else beats you to it!

      Check out my most recent post, a tutorial explaining how to setup a mobile wallet quickly using breadwallet…

      X.

  11. Ok folks – we now have ten commentators who have secured themselves some coins. Wonderful to see.

    You’ll all get your satoshi’s very soon and I’ll post a link to the transaction for confirmation 🙂

    Now for the rest of you – I’d still love to hear from you whether on this post or another, so please do comment away!

    1. X just wondering, for the amount you sent, can you let us know the fee you paid? Trying to understand the trade off since the transaction seemed to clear pretty quickly. Did you pay a “higher” fee?

      1. Hi Alex,

        Great question, which will be the topic of one of my next articles.

        To give you a brief overview, the “right fee” is based on the current state of the Bitcoin mempool. This varies with supply and demand so it always makes sense to check the current status.

        In this instance, I paid a fee of 0.00085223 BTC, which was c. $2 at the time of the transaction.

        The fee you should pay is based on the number of inputs and outputs which make the transaction and how fast you want it to confirm. My transaction obviously had a relatively high number of outputs, so the fee I paid needed to be a bit higher.

        I’ll go into this stuff in depth in the article and share a fee calculator I built to help with this.

        X.

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