Since its inception in 2009, Bitcoin has popularized worldwide as the most reliable cryptocurrency. It has been a trendsetter that initiated the network of decentralized currency globally.
Today, the terms ‘Bitcoin’ and ‘cryptocurrency’ are often used interchangeably but they’re obviously not the same. Bitcoin is the first-ever used cryptocurrency, but there are, still numerous other alternatives to Bitcoin that you need to learn about.
But before we take a deeper look at the different Altcoins available in the market, let’s understand what cryptocurrencies are.
So, What’s a Cryptocurrency?
A cryptocurrency is essentially digital money that comes in the form of “coins” or “tokens.” While some cryptocurrencies are also available in credit cards, most of them are completely intangible.
The term “crypto” in cryptocurrencies refers to the cryptographic procedures that enable the creation and processing of crypto tokens across different decentralized systems.
Cryptocurrencies are typically created with a mining process and aren’t controlled by the government. With the continuing rise of crypto, however, this concept has faded away to some extent. Today, you can find numerous alternatives to Bitcoin, but unfortunately, most of them aren’t as secure.
What’s key to note here, however, is that, in order to become a crypto-trading expert, you need to try your hand at all the different types of Altcoins and create a diversified portfolio for your business. Some Altcoins also offer unique features and benefits for investors.
In this piece, we’ll look at some of the most important cryptocurrencies other than Bitcoin, but please remember that there are currently, over 6,500 cryptocurrencies worldwide. So, here, we’ll discuss the ones that have a significant following and noticeable trading volume.
Alt-text: Ethereum cryptocurrency
Second to Bitcoin, is Ethereum, a cryptocurrency platform that allows developing and running decentralized apps aka ‘dapps’ and smart contracts with no downtime, interference, or control from third parties.
The purpose behind creating Ethereum was to generate a decentralized system of financial assets that’s accessible from anywhere in the world at any given time.
Alt-text: Litecoin cryptocurrency
Launched in 2011, Litecoin is also known as the “silver to Bitcoin’s gold.”Litecoin was created by a former Google engineer and MIT graduate, Charlie Lee.
Similar to Bitcoins and Ethereum, Litecoin is also a decentralized cryptocurrency and it’s not governed by any central authority. It’s essentially based on an open-source worldwide transaction network and offers a noticeable speedier block generation. Because of the fast block generation rate, its transaction confirmation time is also low.
Because of these features, Litecoin is growing in popularity worldwide at a fast pace. Litecoin is currently the sixteenth-largest digital currency globally.
Ever heard about Cardano? Cardano is essentially a decentralized proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain platform, that was designed by cryptography experts, engineers, and mathematicians as an effective substitute for proof-of-work (PoW) networks.
Cardano is also referred to as the “Ethereum killer’’ in the crypto world, as it offers a robust blockchain system, higher scalability, and faster transaction time.
However, Cardano is still at its developmental stage, is not entirely decentralized. The currency aims to provide solutions for problems, including but not limited to contact tracing, chain interoperability, and voter fraud.
Developed by Gavin Wood, Polkadot or DOT, is a proof-of-stake cryptocurrency that offers blockchain interoperability, transactions across multiple parallel blockchains, and a governance system where all the stakeholders and users have a voice.
What makes DOT different from Ethereum is that it offers shared security. It means that Polkadot allows the developers to generate their personalized blockchain while leveraging the same security level that Ethereum offers.
5. Bitcoin Cash
The earliest hard fork of the original Bitcoin. When a disagreement takes place between the developers and miners of a digital currency, the currency is split. The code of the original chain remains the same, but the new chain starts its venture as an entirely different version, with changes to its code.
Bitcoin Cash started its journey as a split that was spurred among the Bitcoin developers on its scalability. The Bitcoin network only offers 1 MB (megabyte blocksize), while the Bitcoin cash offers greater scalability, i.e. 8 MB. Because of greater scalability, it allows more transactions and a faster transaction rate.
Want to learn more about crypto? Take a look at our cryptotrading resources and information. At Urban Crypto, we aim to help you enter the crypto market. We offer comprehensive beginners’ guides for Coinbase, Binance, and Cryptocurrency. If you want to make money with cryptocurrency, or are eager to learn about the best wallets and exchanges to invest in, you can find it on our platform.