The Crypto market values approx $185 billion. It is growing constantly and new coins appear on a near-daily basis. There are about 2000+ types of cryptocurrency in circulation. To understand cryptocurrency types we can divide them into three categories :
- Currency Tokens
- Investment Tokens or Asset Tokens
- Utility Tokens
Currency tokens are a means of payment only. They are a digital replacement of fiat money. Example Bitcoin.
Investment tokens promise a profitable return to buyers. They are termed as digital assets. Financial regulators like SEC classify them as securities. They are presented to investors in an ICO in exchange for their money. Example DAO
Utility tokens are a means of payment with added value. The value is provided as special access to a product or platform. Example EOS and Ethereum.
Cryptocurrency Types: Altcoins and Stablecoins
Altcoins and stable coins are popular types of cryptocurrencies. The coins released after Bitcoin are referred to as “Altcoins”: they are alternative currencies. Altcoins are a substitute for Bitcoin: for example, Litecoin.
Stablecoins are coins pegged to fiat currencies or commodities. They are a “stable price” cryptocurrency. Stablecoin value is pegged in the ratio of 1:1 to a fiat currency like USD. PAX, USDT, and USDC are examples of stablecoins.
List of cryptocurrencies by market cap
This is the list of cryptocurrencies by market cap from CoinMarketCap. These top 10 cryptocurrencies represent 85% of the total market size.
Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency. It is a peer to peer electronic cash system. It can be split into fractions as small as 0.00000001 BTC per transaction. The smallest fractional increment of Bitcoin is called a “Satoshi”. These incremental values enable micro trading of Bitcoin. There is a set limit of the number of bitcoins that can be mined. Once that number is reached, users can circulate the existing coins. Bitcoin is always in news in mainstream media. The Bitcoin community also calls it “digital gold”.
We can use Ethereum to decentralize, codify, trade and secure almost everything. It enables smart contracts and dApps (“decentralized apps) to built and operate with no downtime. Applications built on Ethereum use the “Ether” token (ETH). Ethereum has many real-world use cases. It has strong community support. Many utility tokens are built on Ethereum blockchain.
Ripple is a real-time worldwide settlement network. Unlike Bitcoin, you cannot mine Ripple. It uses consensus ledger as a means of confirmation. Ripple reduces computational power and network latency. Many financial organizations and banks back Ripple.
Litecoin is a fork of Bitcoin. Some call it “digital silver”. Litecoin utilizes cryptographic algorithms. The transactions are faster and the transaction fee is lower.
BitcoinCash was created from Bitcoin for smaller day to day transactions. The block size is now 32 MB blocks. Many upcoming projects are utilizing BitcoinCash Network. BitcoinCash has talented developers, a strong vision and a clear roadmap. It has made its way to the top cryptocurrency list and is here to stay.
EOS supports large scale applications. Its protocol substitutes inflation for transaction fees. Entities that run EOS network receive rewards in the form of EOS coins.
Binance coin is the native cryptocurrency of Binance exchange. Since January 2019, it has managed to increase its price by 400%. Some Binance coins are burned quarterly to check the number of coins in circulation. This increases the demand for coins.
Bitcoin SV is a brainchild of nChain company. It was launched to restore the original Bitcoin protocol. It is currently one of the most traded coins.
Tether is a stablecoin on Bitcoin blockchain. The value of Tether is pegged to the price of national currencies like USD. Tether’s value mirrors USD and 1 Tether = $1. Tether facilitates crypto trading with a fixed rate.
Stellar coin started in 2014. It is an open source protocol for exchanging money. Stellar forms a global value exchange network.
Digital currencies have been around for nine years. Most people are only aware of well-known cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. But cryptocurrency market is not limited to just Bitcoin. Each cryptocurrency is unique in terms of technology and use. It looks like we are on the verge of the biggest decentralized transformation of the financial industry.
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