Get Bitcoins & Get Growing!

What Are Bitcoins?

In layman’s terms, Bitcoin ( - BTC) is a decentralized, virtual currency which has value by virtue of supply and demand as well as the difficulty and expense required to “mine” more Bitcoins. Bitcoins are exchanged for real world currency via a network of currency exchanges which extract value through exchange fees and/or fees for other transactional services, such as payment processing services. Bitcoins can be created and owned/stored by individuals and can be used in peer-to-peer transactions with no conversion to/from real world currency. A proud Bitcoin owner can choose to store their Bitcoins in their own local wallet software or through a 3rd-party wallet service via the cloud.

Why Are Bitcoins Important?

Bitcoin Is The Future, & The Future Is Now!

Bitcoin has been touted as the future currency of the internet -- Bitcoin is electronic, immediate, can be freely traded (with no/minimal governmental oversight and control, thus far), opensource, anonymous, and less expensive than traditional payment methods. Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin have great potential to be truly transformative like few other things -- creating barriers to over reaching government and corporate snooping, and may even be the end of credit cards as we know them!

There are a few critical requirements for a currency to be successful, one of which is easy exchange for goods and services. Acceptance of Bitcoins is gaining considerable momentum in just about every industry. As it continues to mature, the scope of goods and services available for exchange will grow exponentially. As it stands now, you can already buy just about any type of product or service with Bitcoins, and as of today you can even buy hydroponics with Bitcoins!

Bitcoins Are (Can Be) Anonymous

Because Bitcoin transactions can be conducted peer-to-peer, users are able to by-pass third party intermediaries such as banks and governmental regulators. This is a great new tool for the privacy-minded consumer, and poses a new challenge for regulators and financial institutions which have become accustomed to controlling and tracking the flow of capital.

Bitcoins Are Easy To Use

So, this is a somewhat subjective and relative statement.:) While Bitcoins and related tools and services are very easy to use, there is definitely a learning curve. But with a small investment of time and patience, anyone can quickly get on board with Bitcoins and be buying and selling Bitcoins with the best of them.

What Are Current Bitcoin Exchange Rates?

There area a handful of Bitcoin exchanges which publish real time exchange rates in all of the common world currencies, as well as a number of smaller currencies. The largest Bitcoin exchange Japan-based mtgox.com, but there a number of others that are reputable and as "mature" as they get in this nascent industry. We'll be adding a real time exchange rate widget to our site soon -- please come back soon to check it out!

How To Get Bitcoins?

Word Of Caution: Bitcoin exchange rates can be quite volatile, so please educate yourself on the risks before getting Bitcoins (and especially before holding them for investment). There are a number of reputable Bitcoin exchanges and Bitcoin wallet services available, however, it is up to you to choose vendors with whom you feel most comfortable. We do not, as yet, make recommendations on preferred Bitcoin service providers. But, we’ve listed a few good references below where you may begin learning about Bitcoins and conduct your own research.

How Do I Keep My Bitcoins?

There are a number of 3rd-party online Bitcoin wallets as well as smart-phone based wallet apps. You should carefully investigate the handful that are out there before choosing one. Alternatively, you may host your own bitcoind system which will keep current with the Bitcoin network and allow you to manage your own transactions yourself. Again, due diligence is essential when deciding how to store your Bitcoins!

Bitcoin References

“Bitcoin (sign: ; code: BTC) is a cryptocurrency where creation and transfer is based on an open source cryptographic protocol independent of any central authority." -Wikipedia
  • Wikipedia Bitcoin Entry: The Wikpedia entry for Bitcoin provides a great primer including a little bit of history on the often turbulent Bitcoin market, and movie worthy Bitcoin heists.
  • BitcoinMagazine.com: A good source of news content on the Bitcoin industry as well as a good place to identify some of the bigger players in the industry, perhaps biased though as it's owned by Bitpay.

Our Bitcoin Checkout Process

All transactions with EastWestHydro are denominated in USD. Should you choose Bitcoin as a payment option during the course of checking out, our cart system will calculate a BTC price using an up-to-the-second spot rate from current exchanges. Then a time-sensitive payment address is generated with a 15 minute payment window. Changes to the cart will generate a new BTC denominated payment address. Once your payment is made and the order process complete, we process your order exactly the same as if you’d paid cash or used a credit card!

Buying with Bitcoins is similar to using a credit card for an international purchase -- orders are denominated in the retailer’s local currency, an exchange rate is determined immediately (usually by credit card merchant services company), and the end user is charged an equivalent amount in their local currency.