What is Neo (NEO)? A beginner’s guide in 360 words.


NEO was founded in 2014 and hit exchanges in late 2016 under the name, ANTSHARES. Its price was $0.18 a coin and it came with a lot of promising potential out of Shanghai, China. The switch from the name ANTSHARES to NEO was part of a rebranding effort in mid-2017. Since the name change, you could say the marketing team is doing something right. Although the rebranding effort has definitely contributed to NEO’s success, there is also the very exciting technology behind the coin stimulating its rapid growth.

A lot of investors compare NEO to Ethereum because they are both smart contract based cryptos – some call NEO the “Chinese Ethereum.” A smart contract is a computer function that directs the transfer of digital cryptocurrencies between two different parties when the requirements of the contract are satisfied.

A smart contract sets guidelines and penalties regarding an agreement in the same way a traditional contract does, however, a smart contract is additionally capable of autonomously enforcing the contract’s rules. It does this by diagnosing information and carrying out actions determined by the smart contract. NEO is heavily engaged in shaping the future of digital assets combined with its smart contract capabilities in a move towards the decentralization of intermediaries such as banks.

To fully understand NEO, an investor must properly know what decentralization means. The word decentralization is thrown around in the crypto hemisphere a lot, but do everyday investors truly understand what it actually means?

Decentralization begins with a move away from individual national banking systems that currently govern fiscal policy. When you look at the United States’ banking system throughout history, it started out with colonial notes in the late 1600’s which were kind of like “I-owe-You’s.” Then in the mid-1800’s, the US established a centralized national banking system that began to print Legal Tender Notes. FDR ended the gold standard in 1933 when the FED began to realize, in order to print an adequate amount of circulating supply of US dollars for government spending, it would no longer be possible to continue backing it with gold. If you look at the purchasing power of a $1 bill since 1913, when inflation is taken into account, that $1 is now worth $0.04 today. Just to remind you the Federal Reserve, a centralized intermediary, took over the United States Banking system in 1913 and they haven’t stopped printing money since.

If making the bet against the national banking intermediaries is something you believe in, next time instead of buying an asset like gold to offset your losses on the devaluation of the US dollar and other devalued national currencies, consider some NEO among other cryptocurrencies.

How can you buy NEO?

You first need to buy Bitcoin or Ethereum on Coinbase and then transfer it over to your account at Binance or KuCoin to exchange it for NEO. For reference, check out our guide –Cryptocurrency Investing: How to Buy Altcoins. If you get stuck or need help, send us a message through our Facebook page or use our contact page and someone on staff will walk you through the process.

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Ryan Morris
Ryan's mission is to educate about the future, technology, potential uses and the economic impact related to blockchain and cryptocurrency through presentations, discussions, and research. He is currently the treasurer of the Cryptocurrency research group at Florida State University. Ryan is an Accounting major and he aspires to earn his CPA upon graduation from FSU.