Ethereum is the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap and trading volume. This is a really impressive achievement, considering that there are over 2,000 competing cryptocurrencies. Even more impressive is that Ethereum only launched in July of 2015, around 6 years after the launch of Bitcoin, and also several years after the release of close rivals like XRP and Litecoin. Ethereum has done an amazing job of overcoming the first mover advantage enjoyed by such altcoins.
Rankings courtesy of CoinMarketCap
The nearest direct competitor to Ethereum in terms of market cap is EOS. Both Ethereum and EOS are blockchain platforms suitable for the transfer of value as well as the execution of code. However, Ethereum has the advantage of being significantly more decentralized than EOS. Whereas Ethereum transactions are processed by its large and varied mining community, the EOS blockchain is controlled by a comparatively small number of influential players.
That Ethereum and the even more recent EOS and Cardano projects are valued so highly by the market reveals the current appetite for smart contract platforms; blockchains which allow for distributed code execution. At the current count, there are roughly 2,240 different distributed apps - or “dapps” - running on Ethereum’s blockchain. These apps run the gamut from crowdfunding, gaming, and gambling, to at least 1,000 other cryptocurrencies (technically known as “tokens,” when reliant upon another coin’s blockchain).
Crowdfunding and tokens, which tend to go hand-in-hand in practice, deserve a special mention. As the most successful applications thus far of Ethereum’s flexibility as a smart contract platform, they perfectly illustrate Ethereum’s primary strength; it’s a coin which makes it “easy” to build other coins and distributed apps.
The crowdfunding craze, which culminated in 2017, allowed investors and speculators from anywhere in the world to fund projects using cryptocurrency. Tokens were issued on Ethereum’s blockchain and purchased primarily with ETH and BTC, which increased demand for both coins, fuelling a secondary bubble outside of the tokens themselves. In order to use these tokens, an amount of ETH is required to pay transaction and processing fees, which is why it benefits Ethereum to host apps and other coins.
Creating tokens representing a share in (or more precisely, a vaguely-defined association with) a future project, is known as an Initial Coin Offering or ICO. This innovative form of financing circumvented the traditional, highly-regulated channels which largely restrict investment into potential future unicorns to wealthy professionals. The exciting possibilities of this new funding avenue kicked off something of a market mania. At “peak insanity” in mid-2017, Ethereum comprised 31.5% of the total crypto market cap, with Bitcoin reduced to a mere 40%!
Unfortunately, the accompanying lack of regulation also allowed a huge number of inadequately-planned projects and outright scams to exploit the influx of easy money. Close to 90% of ICOs are now considered failures, not having produced long-term profits or successful companies. Regulatory agencies around the world, led by the US SEC, are now plugging up the loopholes to bring ICOs in line with traditional market practices. However, it must be stated that a small minority of successful ICOs - including top ten cryptos like EOS, Binance Coin, and even Ethereum itself - have proven tremendously profitable for early investors.
While Bitcoin holds the lion’s share of the market today, Ethereum’s potential should not be overlooked. Its blockchain generally processes transactions more rapidly and cheaply than Bitcoin’s base layer, and it performs well for the transfer of value.
Buy Ethereum via Bank Transfer at Coinmama
Coinmama users can now buy Ethereum by bank transfer, through either SEPA transfer in Europe or SWIFT transfer in the rest of the world. Buying Ethereum by bank transfer offers lower payment processing fees and higher daily spending limits. There are currently no additional payment processing fees on purchases made by SEPA transfer or on orders over 2000 USD made by SWIFT transfer (and for a limited time only, enjoy 0% processing fees on orders over 1000 USD). Orders under 2000 USD have a flat payment processing fee of 20 GBP. Your bank may charge a separate fee for bank transfers, so always check with them before placing your order. Additionally, buying with bank transfer provides higher daily spending limits, of up to 30,000 USD, depending on account verification level.
Bank transfer orders take 1-3 business days, so if you’re looking for speed, we recommend you continue to use a credit or debit card. Note that you can also buy any of the other cryptocurrencies we support (BTC, XRP, LTC, BCH, ADA, QTUM, and ETC) via SEPA.
Here’s how to buy Ethereum via SEPA or SWIFT bank transfer from Coinmama, in 4 simple steps:
Step 1 - Create or Login to Your Coinmama Account:
Head to the Coinmama website and log into your account. If you do not already have a Coinmama account, click the “Sign Up” button to create a free account. You’ll need to provide your email address, first and last name, and country of residence. Look for a link by email to confirm your account.
Step 2 - Verify Your Account:
Before you can purchase ether (ETH) with Coinmama, you’ll need to complete your account verification by uploading a photo of your government issued ID. This is for regulatory purposes, and to keep your account safe from fraud. You can learn more about account verification here.
Step 3 - Purchase Your Ether:
Once your account has been verified, log in and click on “buy,” then select “Ethereum” from the menu. From there, you will be presented with several choices: either purchase one of our Ether packages, a set quantity of ETH, or a specific amount of up to 15,000 USD. (Higher limits require additional identity verification). You can choose to show prices in either EUR or USD.
Choose an ETH package, or purchase a custom amount by either dragging the slider or entering the desired amount of ETH or USD/EUR in the respective field, then click “Buy ETH” to continue.
Supply your Ethereum wallet address. Note that certain smart contract addresses may give rise to difficulties; please check out this article for further elaboration. Different cryptocurrency wallets support different coins, so always make sure the wallet you’re using supports the coin you’re purchasing.
Next, select the “Go to Payment” button and choose “bank transfer” as your payment method. On the next page, read the terms of the transfer. If you agree to them, check the boxes, then click “next.”
Step 4 - the Checkout Page
When paying by bank transfer, you’ll be provided with Coinmama’s bank account details. Log into your own online banking system or visit your local bank branch, and initiate either a SEPA (Europe) or SWIFT (rest of world) bank transfer in the amount shown, using the Coinmama account details as the recipient.
SEPA transfers usually take 1-2 business days to be received, while SWIFT transfers usually take 2-3 business days. When paying via bank transfer, we can only lock the cryptocurrency rate once the funds have been received. This means that during times of high price volatility, you may get a slightly different amount of ether (either more or less, depending on price fluctuations in the interim) than expected. You can find more information on how we calculate our rates here.
You will also receive your order details by email, including a wallet confirmation link. Check that the wallet address is correct, and if it is, click the link to confirm. Once we’ve received both your payment and wallet confirmation, we will send the ETH amount of your order to your wallet. As soon as the transaction is confirmed on the Ethereum network, you’ll be able to see the coins in your wallet.
Note that during times of especially high traffic, your transaction may take longer than normal to appear as confirmed within your wallet. Ordinarily, the transaction will be confirmed in less than a minute.
Ready to buy Ethereum with your bank account? Let’s go crypto!