The Primecoin (Also known as XPM) is an alternative cryptocurrency coin that was created in July of 2013 and which has since then grown to be one of the most popular and valuable altcoins on the market. It was created by a person or a group going under the pseudonym “Sunny King” and is like the Bitcoin in many aspects, but most importantly in the anonymity and decentralization. Primecoin is the first non-hashcash proof-of-work and is based on prime numbers and provides scientific values besides the value of the coin itself.
Primecoin is developed by the same team that developed the Peercoin and they are trying to once again provide the cryptocurrency industry with a new revolutionizing coin for the future. Primecoin differentiates from the Bitcoin in several areas, which is partly what makes it very interesting as it is seen as an improvement to the Bitcoin, just like several other coins have done before. The proof-of-work system is not a SHA-based system, but instead they use long Cunningham chains for their proof of work, which can help in other scientific matters as well. They also aim to produce a new block each minute, which is very fast for any Altcoin out there.
While Bitcoin transactions can take up to one hour, depending on the server and network, Primecoin transactions takes 10 times less (it is 10x faster), meaning that you can transfer money more or less instantaneously. Primecoin adjust the mining difficulty for each block that is mined, making it much smoother than with the Bitcoin that changes every 2056 blocks. For miners it is worth noting that the blocks released while mining is not fixed, but instead is 999 coins divided by square of the difficulty of the mining. Miners can mine with CPU, GPU and ASIC, allowing all miners to mine the popular coin and provides an edge for those who have invested in sophisticated equipment. Primecoin is seen as one of the contenders to become the next large Altcoin based on these changes from the Bitcoin and has since the launch been in the top of the market.
Primecoin is currently the 12th biggest cryptocurrency in the world, measured by the market capitalization, There is 4.3 million coins in circulation currently, having a market value of around $2-$2.5 per coin, but may increase in the future based on the instability of the Bitcoin. You can mine Primecoins by downloading the Primecoin wallet system from their website or you can purchase them from multiple cryptocurrency exchange sites, where you can exchange Bitcoins to Primecoins.
Primecoin can currently not be used for many things, besides for an investment in cryptocurrencies in general. There are not a lot of merchants currently accepting Primecoin as a payment method, but there are some local stores and such that have chosen to accept it. You can find these stores by having a look in the Bitcointalk forum, where merchants often post when they start to accept cryptocurrencies. There are no gambling site available for Primecoins, but we are sure that we will see some very soon, as the market is quite large currently.