Cryptocurrency, a form of electronic payment, has been gaining popularity over the last few years. Since the first cryptocurrency, bitcoin, was launched in 2009, it has been a disruptive technology with the potential to change the way we pay for goods and services.
Bitcoin is the currency of the Internet: a distributed, worldwide, decentralized digital money. It is the most extensive form of money that exists today and is accepted by merchants who accept the currency. Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer payment network that enables online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution.
The Ethereum blockchain is one of the most talked-about blockchains out there. While Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency, Ethereum is the world’s leading platform for developing smart contracts and decentralized apps. These apps are the technological backbone of everything from crowdfunding to online voting, and they’ve been instrumental in helping to solve some of the hard problems that society faces today.
The cryptocurrency craze has reached new heights with the emergence of Dogecoin, which was launched in 2013. Though a cryptocurrency in its own right, Dogecoin is best-known for being the cryptocurrency that launched the meme known as “doge.” With its associated “doge,” “Shiba,” and “Nyan” animals, Dogecoin’s currency code “DOGE” has become synonymous with Internet humor. Though Dogecoin’s popularity has waned, it’s still an excellent way for people to make money online by trading the currency on exchanges.
When Binance announced that it was launching its own BNB coin, it caused quite a buzz in the crypto community. Binance is a cryptocurrency exchange with over 11 million users. The coin launched on March 22, 2018, and is not only Binance’s first coin but the first decentralized cryptocurrency to be launched on Binance’s platform. The announcement was notable for another reason. Binance’s CEO, Changpeng Zhao, promised that Binance’s BNB coin would be the first cryptocurrency listed on Coinbase, a major U.S. crypto exchange and wallet.
Litecoin is the original cryptocurrency created as a peer-to-peer payment system that does not require a third party. Litecoin differs from alternative cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin in that it has faster block generation times. Litecoin aims to be faster and more efficient. Litecoin was created in October 2011 and currently has more hashing power than any other cryptocurrency.
Tether is a stablecoin, considered to be a cryptocurrency that maintains its value relative to another asset or currency. Created in 2014, Tether is pegged to the U.S. dollar at 1 to 1, and it’s a popular cryptocurrency that has attracted many investors, given its high supply (1 billion coins) and price stability. The stablecoin’s value is similar to that of real U.S. currency, and many people use it as a quick way to purchase Bitcoin.
Ripple is a technology company based in San Francisco, California. Its claim to fame is XRP, a cryptocurrency that you can buy, invest and trade. XRP is a digital asset, a digital form of money. Like other digital forms of money like Bitcoin, XRP is decentralized and does not have a central bank or single administrator.
With so much cryptocurrency news out there, it can be hard to keep up with the many innovations and trends. One new and rapidly growing cryptocurrency is Solana— and their idea is simply amazing. The goal of the Solana project is to bring financial services, such as banking, to the unbanked and underbanked. Access to an account will help cryptocurrency users manage their earnings, invest, save money, and process loans.
The Avalanche cryptocurrency is a peer-to-peer currency, similar to Bitcoin, with an additional encryption feature. That means any cryptocurrency transactions you do are stored on the public ledger of the blockchain network, but private transactions like addresses and amounts are kept secure.
The $20 million Polkadot project was launched in July 2017 with the goal of providing a decentralized internet. Polkadot’s goal is to connect all blockchains using a protocol. But that protocol is complicated and hard to understand. So, instead, Polkadot aims to introduce a new cryptocurrency to supplant Bitcoin.