By Mary Ann Callahan

In the cryptocurrency world, there are only a handful of coins that have surpassed the $1,000 USD per coin level. Dash, short for Digital Cash, reached this goal at the end of last year. While its price has suffered in the wake of the recent correction, Dash remains a strong contender anyway. This is also proven by the fact that every remarkable Bitcoin exchange has Dash listed on its trading platform.

Dash retains an array of potential advantages over its competitors. One of such advantages is obviously the PrivateSend protocol. It has given Dash the ability to not only send coins quickly, but also anonymously. Through their masternode-based network, multiple transactions at pre-set amounts are garbled and sent to the targets from randomized locations, preventing any third party from tracing the amount back to the sender.

What Makes Dash a Valuable Commodity?

While most altcoins are still struggling to bring their associated products to the market, Dash has continued to add more merchants to their payment network. Real-world uses are the pinnacle of cryptocurrency achievement, and no one can argue against Dash’s advancements in this field. In turn, the adoption of the Dash system by new merchants creates an environment that raises the price per coin. It’s a symbiotic relationship that generates value so long as the system expands.

Dash’s inherent value against the US Dollar has increased substantially over the previous year. This increase in purchasing power makes the cryptocoin an attractive option for income storage so long as the user is willing to stomach the normal cryptocurrency volatility. The convenience of being able to pay directly with Dash also removes the cumbersome process of transferring cryptocurrencies to fiat. This system is effective in both potential market states. In a bull market, Dash provides a storage tool that allows a disposable income to generate returns. In a bear market, it instead provides an easy exit strategy back to fiat for the duration of the dip in the market.

What Does the Market Suggest for Dash’s Potential?

There are a few indicators in the wake of the recent correction that could be telling for Dash’s future:

– Bitcoin remains the reserve currency for the entire blockchain industry, and Dash’s price point closely follows the market trend of that reserve. Looking at a chart of Bitcoin’s price versus USD, as compared with Dash’s price versus USD, we can see a startlingly direct correlation.
– Watching Dash’s direct competitors, we can notice some sense of decoupling from the Bitcoin standard that suggests a level of independence. The undisputed second place cryptocurrency, Ethereum, shows a similar trend of detaching from the Bitcoin standard over time, although Ethereum is not a competitor to Dash in the digital cash use space.
– One of the problems that Dash is likely to run into resides in its ‘boutique’ appeal. Other cryptocurrencies are seeking to be a universal digital currency, and some have already announced the release of apps that support that goal. It may end up being irrelevant how many merchants sign on with Dash if competitors can be used anywhere without direct integration.
– In the recent correction, Bitcoin dropped by approximately 65%. Ethereum performed significantly better at only a 51% drop in value. Dash performed worse at 68%, suggesting that it both lost value independently and in correlation with Bitcoin’s hard correction.

Dash’s Positives

Dash is still one of the strongest cryptocurrencies available, even after the correction and price dip. The coin is still trading at almost $600 per unit, higher than any of the immediate competitors. This suggests a strong continued backing by investors that have ridden out the correction. When the market turns bull once again, Dash will almost certainly return to its previous price point and generate a decent return on investment.

Dash’s infrastructure is available and operational – a working product is worth more than a concept. The extensive network of partnerships has created a legitimate real-world market for Dash coins. That alone puts Dash ahead of much of the lesser competition, and the early arrival in the market has allowed it to build up a considerable amount of momentum.

Dash’s Negatives

There are dozens of cryptocurrencies seeking the status of ‘digital currency’ and looking towards adoption in the real world. Unfortunately, Dash hasn’t shown that it can outmaneuver all of the competitors yet. Dash needs to start aggressively seeking universal acceptance if it wants to be the first to the market.

The coin has gone through two re-branding events so far, originally called ‘Darkcoin’ in direct relation to Litecoin, and then Xcoin before finally settling on the combination of the words ‘Digital Currency’ to create Dash. This isn’t necessarily negative, but seems to have been a way to distance Dash from an instant mining hiccup in the initial release. The event created a large amount of Dash at the very start of its fork from Bitcoin, and gained the project some bad press at the time.

Will Dash’s Price Explode?

It seems unlikely that Dash will explode in the short term. However, before the correction took place, Dash’s price had been showing a steady growth.

You may call 2017 a banner year for all cryptocurrencies, but the price chart for Dash is self-explanatory. In early January 2017, Dash was traded at $11 each, and by the end of 2017 one Dash coin was priced at over $1,100. Looks attractive, doesn’t it? Still, to make its value increase further Dash has to go a long way towards wider acceptance and greater popularity. It can be achieved through introducing technical advancements that would place Dash ahead of the competitors and thus contribute to its skyrocketing price.

2018 is going to be a landmark year for Dash and the team behind it. According to Dash’s roadmap, the early version of Evolution will be released in June. The general idea of Evolution is to make cryptocurrency easily accessible and used by any customer, even the least tech-savvy one. Evolution will be working as a decentralized payment network where users are able to connect with merchants through a contact list and make direct payment at a single click. Without doubt, the concept is innovative and unparalleled, but whether the release of Evolution will push the price of Dash up remains to be seen.

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