A brief history
Ryan Fugger started Ripple in 2004 as a way to extend credit lines and make secure payments in traditional and online currencies. His attempt to solve this problem commenced before Bitcoin. Although the creation of Bitcoin opened a door to a solution which led to XRP.
XRP was conceived by Chris Larsen, Jed McCaleb and Arthur Britto in 2012. They developed the protocol that XRP was built on based on the work done by Fugger. Building off it enabled them to improve the transaction fees and time delays within traditional systems.
In 2012, it was launched under the company name Opencoin which was changed in September 2013 to Ripple Labs, then again in October 2015 to just Ripple.
How is XRP is different from Bitcoin and Ethereum?
When it comes to creating new coins, both Bitcoin and Ethereum go through a process known as mining. In XRP’s case, a total of 100 billion of it was created by Ripple at its onset and no additional XRPs would be created.
Another point to note is that Bitcoin is maintained by enthusiastic developers and was created by Satoshi Nakamoto an unknown person/group. In the case of XRP, it was developed by Ripple which reportedly holds about 60 per cent of XRP tokens.
Additionally, Bitcoin transaction confirmations take 10 minutes on average, while XRP transaction confirmations take 5 seconds.
What you can do with it
XRP was created with the aim of making international financial transactions faster and cheaper. Look at it this way, Bitcoin was created to solve the issue of currency control and creation. Ethereum sought to extend the use case of blockchain beyond cryptocurrency.
For XRP the focus of its creation was to disrupt existing the financial system by making international money transfer more efficient.
Currently, XRP makes it possible to transfer value in 4 seconds. It can handle 1,500 transfer transactions per second every day. The best part is this only costs $0.00001. Yes, that is much less than a penny.
Ripple uses XRP in its Xrapid product as a means to execute transactions for financial institutions like banks and remittance companies since it makes sending money across countries cheaper and faster.