The Lightning Network enables anyone to use bitcoin instantly, with minimal fees, while still being permissionless and having the bitcoin's blockchain acting as a fallback that you can always count on.
Hundreds of people have been working on new Lightning Network apps (Lapps), from indie hackers interested in creating new ways of experiencing payments online, to VC funded companies creating new businesses on top of Lightning.
Getting on Lightning used to be difficult in the beginning, but today you can start playing around with all these Lapps in less than 5 minutes, without spending a single penny.
Choosing a Lightning wallet
There are multiple Lightning Network wallets available for all kinds of platforms, mobile, desktop, web, you name it.
The wallet you choose will determine how easy, private and secure your experience using the Lightning Network is:
A custodial wallet will be the easiest way to get started - you don't have to worry about channels or routing,. However, it comes with some privacy and self-sovereignty concerns.
On the other hand, non-custodial wallets can be a little more difficult to set up, but your funds remain completely under your control.
Using Breez wallet (non-custodial)
The Breez wallet is one of the easiest ways to use Lightning, while remaining completely non-custodial.
This wallet has a great user experience and is solely focused on the Lightning Network - there are no on-chain funds to be seen inside the app's UI.
One cool feature is that Breez will automatically open an incoming channel from their node to your wallet, meaning that you can immediately receive money through Lightning, for free!
Breez is available for both iOS and Android.
Using Wallet of Satoshi (custodial)
Wallet of Satoshi is a mobile custodial wallet, meaning that you don't have to worry about incoming liquidity, channels or any technical details at all.
You just have to install it and you can immediately start transacting on the Lightning Network.
Wallet of Satoshi is available for both iOS and Android.
Using Bottle Pay (custodial)
If you would rather have a Lightning wallet in your browser rather than in your mobile phone, Bottle Pay is the way to go.
Bottle Pay offers an amazing user experience while requiring no installation at all. You just have to sign up with any of the multiple authentication methods and you're good to go!
Bottle Pay is also tightly integrated with social media - you can use their Twitter bot to sends sats just using Twitter!
Getting some satoshis to play with
There are multiple ways to earn satoshis on the Ligthning Network:
Sats4Likes - This platform allows you to earn satoshis by following, liking and retweeting tweets. The payouts can range from a few hundred satoshis to thousands of satoshis per each action, making this a really reliable way of getting your hands on quite a few sats!
Microlancer.io - If Twitter is not your thing, Microlancer has a wide variety of tasks, ranging from signing up at different websites or just giving your honest feedback about something. The tasks are usually very quick to complete so you can stack some sats with ease.
Satoshi's Games - Gamers, this one is for you! Try out the numerous classic games that are available on Satoshi's Games, from Super Bro to Lightning Agar.
Y'alls - Have interesting things to share? Publish your piece on Y'alls and earn satoshis everytime someone unlocks your article.
Using your satoshis
Now that you stacked some sats, it's time for you to use them! Check out the many Lightning Network apps available on mainnet right now and give them a try!
Enjoy the world of instant, permissionless transactions that settle instantly over the internet - all backed by the soundest money known to man!
Buy anything on Amazon using the Lightning Network with Moon or buy some Domino's Pizza with Lightning Pizza. The possibilities really are endless, and the network is barely getting started!
See you on the Lightning Network! ⚡
(Disclosure: The Author of this story is the Founder at lapps.co)