Stellar Lumens (XLM) have made a major leap during the last several weeks when it went pass Litecoin (LTC) that way becoming the 6th-largest currency by its market cap of over 3,8 billion dollars and still counting.
Ever since it was first launched back in April of 2015, Stellar Lumens was ready to offer a better alternative for processing micropayments and blockchain-based transactions, when compared to Bitcoin that makes micropayments practically impossible due to the increased fees for miners when transaction amounts are low.
Moreover, Stellar more recently announced the building of Interstellar, a sidechain that should enable interoperability, which is one of the main goals of blockchain-based projects – to find the answers to scalability, interoperability, and sustainability in a still unstable market of cryptocurrencies.
In that unstable market with almost unpredictable rises and falls in market prices of around 2000 different currencies, it can be easily concluded that Stellar makes up for a decently scalable project that allows for a thousand of transactions per a couple of seconds and at the price of a penny.
If the Stellar Lumens project and its native currency XLM got you interested in this crypto, you have probably invested a certain amount in Stellar, but the question is: Are you spending or holding your XLM units, and which option you believe to be more benevolent for the rise of Stellar Lumens?
I am Spending XLM: Should I?
The main idea behind the Stellar Lumens project is to “bank the unbanked”, which means that the team is set to bring micropayments and cross-border payments to communities that find difficult to gain access to a bank account that would allow them to easily send and receive payments.
In that spirit, Stellar Lumens and the Lightning network allow XLM holders and users to utilize Stellar network in order to be able to send global transactions and micropayments to anyone willing to accept XLM for under a penny per transaction and with the payment being available for the receiver in not more than 4 seconds maximum.
Precisely for that, it is presumed that Stellar makes up for a valid competitor of Ripple foundation, which is a bit far from the actual case if you take into consideration that Ripple is pushing the adoption of their technology to global banks and financial institutions, while Stellar is focused on communities that have limited options for sending micropayments.
Although Stellar acts as a payment medium, some holders of XLM are interested in spending their XLM units in physical stores and online, which is said to lead XLM towards mass adoption.
Scrolling around the internet, you might find several crypto cards that offer mediation for crypto-based payments and also support XLM, which means that there are definitely online stores with different products and services that you can spend XLM on.
There are also physical stores that independently accept XLM as a form of payments, while you can also buy coffee with Lumens in Starbucks with Ternio Block Card, but still, XLM is not being massively spent as a currency.
Litecoin’s PayWithLitecoin campaign is bringing LTC some small and medium-sized business that are willing to sign up for accepting LTC as a payment method, with having already many of businesses joining the network, however, Litecoin is declining in price, also losing its ranking to Stellar and previously EOS.
Stellar doesn’t have a similar adoption campaign for XLM, and yet we see it thriving, already getting close to reaching the top five list.
So, based on this example is spending XLM on something like coffee a negative thing for Lumens?
It might be. Let’s imagine that there are more than several physical stores accepting XLM, which means that you would have an alternative of buying groceries, technology or clothes with your XLM. But what happens to XLM once it reached the retailers?
Do they keep it or sell it?
It depends from personal preferences probably, but the retailers will probably go ahead and exchange these XLM for fiat, which brings us to the possibility that PayWithLitecoin campaign is actually backfiring on the price of LTC in case the retailers and business accepting LTC are massively selling it for fiat.
I am Holding XLM: Should I?
XLM is basically a medium for swift and extremely cost-effective global transactions and micropayments, however, many holders consider XLM to be a keeper, not willing to spend it or sell it. At least not yet.
There is a general discussion on the matter of whether a currency like Stellar should be HODLed or spent as an alternative payment method.
So, while one part of the community is claiming that spending XLM is contributing to the overall mass adoption of the currency, heading towards replacing fiat, which is still a distant case scenario, the other part claims that buying a coffee with XLM would be an inconsiderate tribute to the guy who once spent 10,000 BTC units to pay for his pizza order.
Today, these 10,000 BTC used for purchasing a pizza would now be worth around 650 million dollars in Bitcoin, so it is easily concluded why some XLM holders would rather keep their Lumens in their wallets rather than buying a coffee at Starbucks with XLM as Stellar Lumens is seen progressing up the ranking list.
But in the end, a great part of holders may end up selling their XLM eventually in case Lumens gets more attention, getting to the point of being valued more than 0.20$ in the market in order to turn a profit.