XRP: Everything to Know

By  Beluga Research July 11, 2023

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  • XRP is for fast and low-cost cross-border transactions
  • It aims to be a bridge cryptocurrency in the network - used to ease the pain points with sending money
  • The XRP Ledger is the open-source blockchain underlying the system
  • RippleNet, a global payment network of banks and institutions, uses XRP


Ripple (XRP) is a blockchain-based exchange and settlement system that provides fast and low-cost cross-border transactions services to financial institutions. The primary purpose of this system is to serve as a bridge currency to give financial institutions a more beneficial way to exchange crypto and fiat currencies. Security and dependability are crucial for any financial transactions, so company-owned computers power the Ripple (XRP) network.

With lightning-fast transaction times and cheap transaction costs, Ripple (XRP) offers a solid payment settlement system and currency exchange. In the constantly-changing world of cryptocurrencies, it stands out as a distinctive and appealing alternative because of its creative approach to financial transactions.

A Brief History

In early 2011, developers David Schwartz, Jed McCaleb and Arthur Britto were intrigued by Bitcoin, but were also aware of some energy waste involved in the mining process of it. To convey value, they tried to develop a more resilient system.

In 2012, the three programmers continued to work on creating a distributed ledger that enhanced these fundamental Bitcoin restrictions; they initially called the technology "Ripple." This ledger contained a digital asset that was first known as "ripples" (XRP as the cryptocurrency), thereby adhering to the same naming policy that Bitcoin (BTC) uses. Back then, the term "Ripple" was used to refer to an open-source project, a proprietary consensus ledger (the "Ripple Consensus Ledger"), a transaction protocol (the "Ripple Transaction Protocol" or "RTXP"), a network (the "Ripple network"), and a digital asset (known as "ripples").

In 2013, a company called OpenCoin rebranded to Ripple Labs. OpenCoin has been working to transform the world's financial system since its inception. Despite the radical beliefs of many of Bitcoin's early supporters, Chris Larsen, who co-founded Ripple, never believed blockchain technology was a tool for replacing the current financial system.

In 2020, the XRPL Foundation launched. The decentralized XRP Ledger is being developed and adopted more quickly because of the efforts of the XRPL Foundation, a nonprofit organization. The Foundation received a start-up gift of over $6.5 million from Coil, Ripple, and Gatehub to support the expanding number of developers and other community members building on the XRP Ledger.

What is XRP?

With its cryptocurrency, XRP, Ripple is a blockchain-based digital payment network and protocol. Like the SWIFT system for international money and security transfers, which banks and financial intermediaries use for trading across currencies, Ripple's primary operation is a payment, settlement, asset exchange and remittance system.

The pre-mined cryptocurrency token transactions occur under the ticker "XRP." "Ripple" is the name of the organization and network, and the cryptocurrency token is XRP. As a form of interim settlement layer denomination, the function of XRP is to act as an intermediary exchange mechanism between two different currencies or networks.

Getting Started

XRP continues to be a leading cryptocurrency competitor despite obstacles and controversies, garnering still-relevant interest from financial institutions and investors. Yet it is essential to understand XRP's technology, its function in the Ripple payment network, and the legal environment. Investors can use these features to guide decisions regarding this complicated digital asset. As a unique digital currency, XRP has a particular role in the global payments sector.

From the beginning, a peer-to-peer trust network has been the basic premise of XRP. According to Ripple, XRP is a digital asset that processes transactions quickly, is less expensive, and uses less energy than some competitors.

XRP often acts as a settlement layer that optimizes transactions with the Ripple network. It serves as a cryptocurrency and is on several exchanges for futures, options, swaps, spot trading, custody-assisted trading, and non-custodial trading.

Unique Aspects

One feature differentiating XRP is its capacity to support quick, affordable cross-border transactions. When compared to conventional payment methods, this is especially significant. Cross-border payments often are slow, expensive and cumbersome. The advent of cryptocurrencies, and specifically XRP for payments purposes, is attempting to improve cross-border payments.


  • Very Affordable Fees. On the Ripple network, a transaction only costs 0.00001 XRP, or around one cent at current exchange rates.
  • Fast Transaction Confirmations. Transaction confirmations happen quickly with XRP. They typically take four to five seconds, as opposed to the days it could take banks to complete a wire transfer or the hours it could take for Bitcoin transaction validation.
  • Large Financial Institutions Use XRP. Ripple can be used as a transaction platform by big businesses, as well. A few companies using this network include IndusInd Bank, Santander, and Bank of America, proving it has more institutional market penetration than most cryptocurrencies.
  • Exchange Network is Versatile. The Ripple network does more than just handle XRP-based transactions; it is also for cryptocurrencies and other forms of fiat money.


  • XRP Issues with the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC). The SEC sued Ripple in December 2020, asserting that the business should register it as a security because it controls when XRP is released. The corporation has refuted the claim.
  • Huge Pre-Mined XRP Supply. Although most of the Ripple supply that is not in use is in escrow, there may be an introduction of vast amounts at the wrong time, which will cause an adverse effect on the price of XRP.
  • XRP is Fairly Centralized. Due to decentralized features, which could remove power from established institutions and governments, cryptocurrencies have gained popularity. The Ripple System is in opposition to this idea, as it can be considered reasonably centralized due to its default list of validators.