There is no doubt that the global cryptocurrency market has really taken off now. It is estimated to be worth around $250 billion dollars in total and this has attracted many investors to the sector recently. Of course, the headline grabbing name has been Bitcoin with its high media profile and stunning overall performance. What might surprise you though is that there are lots of other popular coins you could invest in as well as Bitcoin.
But what are the ten most popular alternative coins you could trade which are not Bitcoin?
10 – Libra
Anyone who has kept an eye on the cryptocurrency world will have heard about Libra. This is the digital currency which Facebook are planning to launch sometime in 2020 and could be a huge hit. Rumours first began to do the rounds in mid-2018 of Facebook considering such an idea and by 2019 they had confirmed it. If it launches as planned and all goes well, it has the potential to really challenge Bitcoin as the premier digital currency. The sheer power of the Facebook brand will see to that. Its primary aim is to make global payments between people simpler especially for those without a bank account. If they can get through the regulatory mire and get it released as planned, this could be a huge deal for the whole crypto sector.
09 – Binance Coin
Coming with the token symbol of BNB, this is actually the official crypto coin of popular exchange Binance. This platform was created in 2017 and has risen quickly since then to be a popular crypto exchange for people to use globally. The Binance Coin makes it possible for users of the exchange to trade in many different individual coins but with a lot less hassle. These coins have also become popular as they allow Binance users to pay platform fees and also buy certain services, like travel fees.
08 – Monero
This currency has found favour with many for its extreme levels of privacy and security. All cryptocurrencies have this on their side but Monero takes it to the next level. To put it bluntly, it is simply untraceable! Launched in 2014, it was an instant hit with the whole crypto community and people who needed anonymous ways to pay for things. Monero, like all digital currency, is totally decentralised and driven by its community of users. The secret to its awesome privacy lies around the ring signatures it employs. This shows multiple cryptographic signatures for each transaction on the network but only one is valid. As there is no way to work out which one this is, Monero users can enjoy total privacy. As of early 2020, this coin had a market cap of just over $990 million.
07 – EOS
Perhaps the newest coin on our list that has actually been released is EOS. This was created by famed crypto pioneer Dan Larimer in June 2018. People with an interest in digital currency will know him as the founder of the Bitshares exchange and social media platform Steemit. It broadly follows the same idea as Ethereum by offering a platform for developers to build decentralised apps on. The coin offering of EOS has gone down in history as one of the most profitable ever. This saw it last a whole year and bring $4 billion of investment in. Its unique selling point is the proof of stake delegation mechanics which should make it much more scalable than other competing coins.
06 – Bitcoin Cash
Although this has the Bitcoin name in the title, it is a separate digital currency in its own right. BCH is a key crypto coin historically as it was the first altcoin to come off a Bitcoin hard fork. These forks are basically when a group of miners aren’t happy with what is going on in a currency and produce their own, unique version. With BCH, this saw changes made to the underlying Bitcoin code in order to produce a separate digital currency. The major change lay around the size of blocks which are bigger with Bitcoin Cash. This coin first came into being in 2017 and has done well since then.
05 – Bitcoin SV
Another coin which came about after a hard fork from the original Bitcoin was BSV. The name stands for Bitcoin Satoshi Vision which gives a nod to Bitcoin founder Satoshi Nakamoto. Where this gets confusing though is that this was actually a fork from a fork! BSV came about after the Bitcoin Cash community had differences which they could not iron out. Fans of this coin claim that it is more in keeping with the original vision Nakamoto had for Bitcoin while also being more stable. This coin is also great for increased security and faster transaction times. With a market cap of just over $2 billion, it is here to stay.
04 – Litecoin
First released in 2011, Litecoin was one of the first digital currencies to follow in Bitcoin’s wake. Many people see it as the silver to BTC’s gold – this gives a handy way to understand its status in the crypto world. It was created by MIT graduate Charlie Lee and is based on an open-source network for payments. It is not controlled by any central authority and uses scrypts to show proof of work which need high-powered computers to decrypt. Litecoin usually generates blocks faster than Bitcoin and so has a quicker confirmation time on transactions. The market cap of this coin is around $3 billion which is pretty impressive.
03 – Tether
This is known as a stablecoin and has the token name of USDT. Tether aim to peg its own value to another currency or external reference in order to drive down market volatility. This has made it popular with many investors who have been put off by rampant volatility in Bitcoin and other digital currencies. This first hit the market in 2014 and allows people to use standard FIAT currency in the digital space online. It makes use of Blockchain to facilitate secure and safe payments. This also has a market cap in the billions and is still invested in by many crypto traders.
02 – Ripple
With the token name of XRP, Ripple is a cryptocurrency based around a global settlement network. It was launched in 2012 initially and is unique for a digital currency in how it operates. The individual coins are not mined with Ripple but were pre-mined before its launch. This means that no new coins are ever created but existing ones are simply removed or added to the network. As there is no mining needed for Ripple, it is an altcoin which uses much less computing power and has minimal network latency. It remains a popular coin to invest in for people looking to deal in cross-border payments and has a market cap of almost $10 billion
01 – Ethereum
The premier digital currency around that is not Bitcoin remains Ethereum for many industry experts. Essentially, this coin is based around a decentralised platform that enables smart contracts and custom apps to be created. The apps and contracts on Ethereum are free for outside interference or potential fraud which is a big reason for its popularity as a coin. The actual coin used is called Ether and Ethereum itself was launched back in 2015. It has a huge market cap of around $15 billion and has a price per coin of around $140 as of January 2020. This huge size and popularity makes it the second largest digital currency after Bitcoin.
Many people wrongly assume that investing in cryptocurrency is all about Bitcoin. While this is still the largest and most well-known coin, it is not the only option out there. As the above shows, there are many other digital currencies which you could invest in. If you are looking for somewhere different to put your money in this sector, the altcoins we list above are a good starting point.