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Rakuten Coin, GasToken, CoinDeal.com, Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, and More from Cryptocurrencies Today

Rakuten Coin: New Cryptocurrency Promises to Revolutionize Commerce and Communications (Japan-Forward.com)
Rakuten is planning a new cryptocurrency called Rakuten Coin, which promises to create a “borderless” shopping experience and allow the customer base to purchase goods and services from other Rakuten offerings and regions. Rakuten CEO Hiroshi Mikitani recently announced this in his keynote address at this year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The cryptocurrency would be built on blockchain technology and linked to Rakuten Ichiba’s existing loyalty program, Rakuten Super Points, he said. A date has yet to be announced for the launch of Rakuten Coin, but the company’s investment in blockchain technology dates back to 2016, when it acquired Belfast-based Bitnet, a bitcoin wallet startup, establishing a research facility to explore the potential of blockchain technology.

GasToken: a Smart Contract that Makes Ethereum Transactions Cheaper (No ICO Required) (BlockExplorer.com)
A group of IC3 developers has released GasToken, an ingenious method to save money on ethereum and ethereum classic transactions — no initial coin offering (ICO) required. On Thursday, the IC3-backed Chicago Project for the Study of Cryptocommunities released GasToken, a smart contract system that allows users to store gas — a fundamental resource used to make transactions and interact with smart contracts in the Ethereum and Ethereum Classic networks — for later use. Like all cryptocurrency blockchains, the Ethereum network tends to have peak hours in which users make more transactions, and off hours, when they make less. Unsurprisingly, gas prices tend to run higher during peak hours, as more users compete to have their transactions included in the network’s limited block space.

Pixabay/Public Domain

Pixabay/Public Domain

PR: New Cryptocurrency Exchange Market – CoinDeal.com (News.Bitcoin.com)
CoinDeal.com is a cryptocurrency exchange market that has been created by an experienced team of people who aren’t just theoreticians. Quite the opposite, CoinDeal’s team consists of cryptolovers who have been interested in blockchain and cryptocurrencies for years. They not only know what it is all about but also meet the real problems that show up during trading on cryptocurrency exchange platforms. Thanks to that, CoinDeal’s team can easily put itself in users’ place to understand what is really important for them.

Litecoin Price Starts Bucking the Downtrend With Solid LTC/BTC Gains (TheMerkle.com)
With all cryptocurrency markets dipping hard today, it is very difficult to find a positive note. The Litecoin price may provide that positive aspect so many people are looking for as of right now. More specifically, the Litecoin price is still down by quite a lot, but it is also the one currency seemingly recovering the question as of right now. That in itself is quite a remarkable trend, especially given the current market conditions.

Cryptocurrency Interest Wanes – Online Searches for “Bitcoin” Drop 80% (News.Bitcoin.com)
According to data from Google Trends and Insights searches for the word “bitcoin” is declining rapidly. The chart dating back to March 2017 is almost identical to the BTC/USD weekly price chart. The same can be said for a variety of popular words that reached peaks at the end of 2017 like the words “ethereum,” “ripple,” and “cryptocurrency.” Google’s data suggest that all of these words including “bitcoin” show searches are down well over 80 percent.

Report Says Egyptians May be Mining Cryptocurrency Without Their Knowledge (MarketWatch)
The Egyptian government has been secretly infiltrating its citizen’s computers and mining cryptocurrency, according to a report from The Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto. Under a scheme called AdHose, the government was sending internet users to either advertising sites, or to obsolete websites where, unbeknown to them, their computer was being misused, often to mine the Monero cryptocurrency, the report said. “On a number of occasions, the middleboxes were apparently being used to hijack Egyptian internet users’ unencrypted web connections en masse, and redirect the users to revenue-generating content such as affiliate ads and browser cryptocurrency mining scripts,” the report said.

Ripple Hires Bloomberg Expert As Chief Marketing Strategist (Bitcoinist.com)
Ripple has already made waves with a flood of major partnerships and deals. Now, the third most valuable cryptocurrency by market cap has brought in a marketing strategist to help cement the company into mainstream consciousness. Major Marketing Push: Ripple is a complex beast, complete with a slew of major partnerships, a stack of newly-penned deals, a suite of in-house technologies, and a digital asset (XRP) which has seen some extreme volatility.

A worthy competitor: Qtum (QTUM) better than both Bitcoin and Ethereum (CryptoGlobalist.com)
This past week has seen the cryptocurrency world see red again. Bitcoin’s price dropped by over 14% in the previous week as Ethereum dipped below the $700 mark on Thursday. This is the lowest Ether has gone since mid-December 2017. QTUM returns are similar to ETH as the coin sees its price drop by over 17% to close Friday at $18.14. Even though the price is dipping at the moment, Qtum (QTUM) still offers its users a long term solution to the problems faced by both Bitcoin and Ethereum. A worthy competitor.

Stellar, Keybase Partner to Make Cryptocurrencies More User-Friendly: No More ‘Big Ugly Addresses’ (BlockExplorer.com)
“No more big ugly addresses” Blockchain project Stellar and cryptography startup Keybase have inked a partnership designed to fund the development of projects that will make cryptocurrencies more user-friendly. On Thursday, the Stellar Foundation announced that it had signed a deal with Keybase, whose aim is to simplify the user experience in end-to-end encrypted applications by improving public key infrastructure (PKI). The company, which was founded in 2014 by the co-founders of OKCupid, allows users to link their social media accounts to cryptographic keys, which can then be used for communication, code signing, or any number of other applications. Using the Keybase application, other users can then easily verify that a public key – or cryptocurrency address – belongs to a specific individual.

Former CFTC Chair: Cryptocurrency Bubble Is Nowhere Near Bursting (Bitcoinist.com)
Think cryptocurrency is a bubble ready to burst? Think again, says the ex-head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Too Deflated To Pop: According to ex-Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chair Jim Newsome, cryptocurrency is not a bubble on the verge of bursting. He believes this since the industry is still in its infancy and the vast majority of institutional money is still holding off on entering the market, primarily due to uncertainty regarding future regulatory measures.