You cannot yet buy ALGO directly with SGD, so you’ll have to go through another cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin.
The following steps explain how to buy Bitcoin (BTC) with Singapore dollars and then how to buy Algorand with Bitcoin. This example walks through buying ALGO with some of the most popular exchanges, but they aren’t the only options, so you may want to compare a range of options first.
Step 1: Register a Binance account
In this example, we’ll use Binance – the world’s most popular exchange by volume. To register for a Binance account, visit the site and select “register” from the top bar.
You will be required to enter and verify your email address and choose a password. No other identity verification is required unless you want to raise your withdrawal limits, but 2-factor authentication is strongly recommended.
Algorand, founded in 2017, says it’s a permissionless, public and decentralised blockchain. It’s similar to Bitcoin or Ethereum in this respect.
It’s designed to serve as a base-level blockchain protocol on which other dapps can be built and smart contracts operated.
One thing that makes Algorand different is that it claims to be highly scalable, so it’s not prone to the same bottlenecks or fee issues that Bitcoin or Ethereum frequently are. It uses a proof-of-stake system that provides immediate transaction finality, which eliminates a lot of the “forking” problems of earlier blockchains.
As a proof-of-stake system, it encourages ALGO holders to “stake” their tokens, and essentially become ALGO “miners”. Token holders can enjoy some governance powers. In both network consensus and governance, a super-majority of users is required to pass decisions.
It also offers unique economic innovations, including a public token dispersal process through periodic Dutch auctions. The basic tenet is that the market will always ensure a fair ALGO price, and that users will be able to return their ALGO for 90% of the purchase price for up to a year after the purchase, as a kind of algorithmic “satisfaction guaranteed” arrangement.
The team behind Algorand has attracted a lot of attention. Most notably, it was founded by Turing Award-winning computer scientist Silvio Micali.
What to consider before you buy ALGO
There are risks involved in purchasing any cryptocurrency, and even though ALGO aims to offer more assurances through its money-back and Dutch auction system, it still carries many of the same risks as any other cryptocurrency, including a complete loss of funds in the event of hacking or other misadventure.
Other factors to consider include the following:
The prevalence of protocol-level blockchain tokens: There are a lot of base-level blockchain protocols out there, and Algorand is operating in an extremely competitive area.
Complications: The Algorand system is complex, and there may be issues with bugs or other errors down the line.
Regulatory issues: As a public, permissionless blockchain protocol, Algorand occupies something of a regulatory grey area, and it may be unpredictably affected by regulatory shifts.
User participation: Algorand emphasises user participation, but this might be lacking if everyone is only interested in it for speculation.
High initial valuation: In its first Dutch auction, ALGO tokens sold for $2.40. If that’s the “correct” price, it means the total ALGO market cap is $24 billion, which gives it one of the highest market caps of all coins. When considering whether ALGO is over- or under-valued at its current prices, remember that its total supply is 10 billion and extrapolate accordingly.
Disclaimer: Cryptocurrencies are speculative, complex and involve significant risks – they are highly
volatile and sensitive to secondary activity. Performance is unpredictable and past performance is no guarantee of
future performance. Consider your own circumstances, and obtain your own advice, before relying on this information.
You should also verify the nature of any product or service (including its legal status and relevant regulatory
requirements) and consult the relevant Regulators' websites before making any decision. Finder, or the author, may
have holdings in the cryptocurrencies discussed.
Andrew Munro is the global cryptocurrency editor at Finder. After previously writing about insurance and other areas, he now covers the latest developments in digital assets and blockchain and works on Finder's comprehensive range of guides to help people understand cryptocurrency.
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