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DeFi vs. Crypto: What’s the Difference and Why You Should Get Involved?

Anyone who likes to build something big out of small parts will probably also be interested in decentralized finance (DeFi). The industry now has many projects worth $15 billion

You could say that DeFi users are adult gamers who are freezing their funds in smart contracts, creating liquidity, lending, and borrowing cryptocurrencies, and staking tokens. All of the above actions are conducted for one key goal—to boost monetary return. 

You must approach this complex process responsibly. Without a lot of attention, the risk of loss is always present. Want to know even more about this unusual game or profit hunt? Keep reading!

What is Decentralized Finance?what is defi

DeFi stands for decentralized finance. As for the definition of DeFi, it is an umbrella term for financial services that emphasizes decentralization. This decentralization does not come out of nowhere; DeFi is closely related to cryptocurrencies or the blockchain technologies behind cryptocurrencies. 

Decentralization predetermines that blockchain technology does not require an intermediary. In ordinary financial areas, such an intermediary could be a bank, the developer of the code of the dApp you use, and so on. 

Following this logic, the main advantage of DeFi is that it allows financial processes to happen within its ecosystem without the need to trust anyone. This will guarantee you an incredible degree of protection, perhaps the best protection available in the world. 

Another advantage is the security of blockchain technology —information transmitted to the blockchain cannot be forged in any way.

DeFi vs. Crypto: What’s the Difference?decentralized finance crypto

Cryptocurrency is a type of digital or virtual currency that uses cryptography for security. Such currencies are often decentralized (not controlled by a central authority such as a bank or government). The name ‘cryptocurrency’ was formed due to the advanced encryption always used to transfer or store data. 

One of the first and most famous cryptocurrencies is Bitcoin DeFi. It was first introduced to the world in 2009. Today, Bitcoin remains a leader and the most well-developed cryptocurrency. However, one should consider other popular virtual currencies like Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecoin.

What is DeFi Crypto? DeFi crypto meaning primarily involves financial applications based on blockchain technology used to transfer cryptocurrency (including buying/selling) and other financial services, such as lending, borrowing, insurance, trade, payment services, and much more. 

DeFi blockchain applications can be built on various blockchain platforms and involve using different types of digital assets, including cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, as a store of value. However, remember that DeFi is not limited to just Bitcoin. It can include other well-known tokens. 

The DeFi protocol has a stable goal. It aims to provide the same financial services as traditional finance but with smart contracts and other blockchain technologies. This will ensure the safest, most open, and most secure transactions in human history.

It’s time to take stock of the differences and commonalities between cryptocurrency and DeFi. Digital currency (Crypto) is one of the asset types that can be used in DeFi. However, in turn, DeFi offers a wider range of financial services created based on blockchain technology that helps you buy, sell, borrow, or earn money. 

So, in fact, these are two complementary and closely related components of the larger decentralized financial world.

Why Do We Need a DeFi Ecosystem?

If Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer system of electronic money, then DeFi is a peer-to-peer system of electronic financial instruments. 

What is its main purpose? A decentralized finance crypto ecosystem can provide anyone with access to traditional financial services, eliminating the need for intermediaries and lowering barriers to entry. DeFi applications and services are potentially useful to residents of countries with underdeveloped or unstable economies. DeFi services are also in demand in developed countries, especially in the fields of lending, investing, and the development of new income models. 

What Is Crypto Mining, and How Does It Work?

Mining is the extraction of digital currency using special equipment, which is carried out by network participants. 

In short, it stands for the process of validating and combining transactions into blocks, usually done by solving complex mathematical problems or cryptographic puzzles. When miners find a solution, they create a new block containing a certain number of transactions and attach it to the existing blockchain.

The key steps that a beginner needs to take in the field of cryptocurrency mining are as follows:

  • Primary Research: Start with thorough research into the cryptocurrency mining industry. Explore different consensus mechanisms, mining algorithms, and energy requirements for different cryptocurrencies. Assess the potential profitability, risks, and long-term viability of projects.
  • Calculate Costs and Potential Profitability: Conduct a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis, considering energy costs, hardware investment, maintenance, and potential fees for participating in a mining pool.
  • Assess hardware requirements: Select mining hardware that is suitable for the chosen cryptocurrency and consensus mechanism. Analyze an ASIC, GPU, or CPU based on its hash rate, power efficiency, and cost-effectiveness.
  • Create a secure wallet: Familiarize yourself with different types of crypto wallets and create a safe and secure wallet to store your mined coins.
  • Energy Efficiency Plan: Implement energy-efficient mining methods to minimize environmental impact and operating costs. Consider using renewable energy sources or optimizing cooling systems for your mining equipment.
  • Join a mining pool (optional): Consider joining a reputable mining pool, especially for Proof of Work cryptocurrencies, to increase your chances of receiving regular rewards.
  • Install and Configure Mining Software: Download and install the appropriate mining software for your hardware and chosen cryptocurrency.
  • Testing and Optimization: Conduct preliminary mining tests to check hardware functionality and mining efficiency.
  • Implement strict security measures: Prioritize security by using strong and unique passwords, enabling two-factor authentication, and protecting your wallet’s private keys.
  • Comply with regulations: Familiarize yourself with local regulations regarding cryptocurrency mining, taxation, and electricity consumption.
  • Performance Monitoring and Analysis: Use monitoring tools and analytics to identify potential optimization opportunities.
  • Follow industry news: Stay up-to-date with the latest developments in the industry and adapt your strategy according to market trends and technological updates.

Cryptocurrency mining is a complex process that requires careful planning, technical knowledge, and the ability to adapt to the cryptocurrency market.

What is DeFi: Pros and Cons for Usersdefi definition

DeFi examples have popped up all over in recent years, and almost all experts agree that the DeFi segment is expected to grow rapidly in the near future. However, what triggered it, and what is the appeal? Carefully study all the benefits:

  • Wide range of possibilities. Investors and traders can use DeFi functionality for various purposes, from providing loans to trading, saving, or dealing in derivatives.
  • Openness and ease of use. The DeFi ecosystem is completely open. The participant does not need to obtain any approvals; just create a wallet.
  • Speed and low cost. Most transactions are carried out almost instantly, at any time of the day, seven days a week. Interest and bonuses are usually accrued every 15 minutes. And eliminating intermediaries in the form of banks and similar institutions allows you to save on commissions.
  • Transparency. Although transactions are pseudonymous, they are tracked and controlled on the blockchain. Thus, users can receive objective confirmation of their transactions, receipt of funds, etc.
  • Censorship resistance. The decentralized nature of DeFi avoids restrictions, account freezes, and other problems associated with using centralized services.

Despite the significant advantages that are attracting an increasing number of users, we should not forget about the disadvantages and risks associated with DeFi:

Risks of hacking and cyber-attacks. According to statistics, DeFi protocols account for 82% of all cryptocurrency thefts on the market.

  • Unstable commissions on the Ethereum network. Traders are highly dependent on the number of commissions since they carry out quite a few transactions regularly. For example, in early July 2023, fees skyrocketed by 50% after the launch of a suspicious ERC-20 token.
  • High volatility. In this regard, DeFi also reflects the general situation of the crypto market: assets can significantly lose value during downturns or simply against the backdrop of negative news, and interest does not compensate for these losses.
  • Tax reporting. Users are forced to independently keep records of transactions, profits received, etc., to determine tax obligations.
  • Insufficient support for non-technical users. Beginners with minimal technical knowledge may have questions and difficulties when using top DeFi crypto protocols.

Before you start working with decentralized finance, you need to weigh the respective advantages and disadvantages in each case.

Conclusion

DeFi challenges the traditional financial system by offering a decentralized, transparent, and accessible alternative to financial services. New trends such as decentralized derivatives trading, NFT Fi, and algorithmic stablecoins demonstrate the continuous development of DeFi.

With a growing set of platforms, tools, and protocols, DeFi continues to gain popularity and attract new users in 2023–2024, positioning itself as a driving force in the future of finance. However, for DeFi to evolve further, challenges related to efficient use of capital, regulatory pressure, and user experience must be addressed.  

Want to build a secure and robust DeFi or crypto software? LITSLINK offers world-class financial software services. Contact us to learn more!

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