Bitcoin is the most traded virtual currency in the world. It is the pioneer digital currency; Bitcoin was invented by an unknown programmer from a group of programmers that are called Satoshi Nakamoto.
Bitcoin currency is unique because the paying system is a Peer to Peer method, meaning there is no intermediary. The transactions are verified by network nodes and they are recorded in a public distributed ledger called a blockchain.
Bitcoin can be exchanged by other products, currencies and services, this currency is gaining acceleration across the world and more than 5 Million Merchants are currently accepting this currency with an ever-growing audience following and accessing the Bitcoin realm.
Bitcoin was first traded at a range price of €0.03 - €50 between 2010-2012 and today this digital currency is worth more than €6,000+ per coin meaning that the average return for investor that bought just 10 bitcoins between these years have earned 10’s of thousands on an investment of that ranged from €0.30 - €500.
Ethereum Digital currency was officially launched on July 30, 2015.
Ether is the name of the cryptocurrency which runs on the Ethereum blockchain, the technology that underpins the digital coin. But Ethereum is often used as shorthand for the digital currency as well.
Ethereum has been designed to support the so-called smart contract application. A smart contract is a computer program that can automatically execute the terms of a contract when certain conditions are met. This use has excited many investors.
Ether is the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, worth around €8 billion, according to the market analysation, below bitcoin’s €19 billion valuation.
Bitcoin cash was announced on 1st of August 2017 known as BCC.
Bitcoin Cash is a peer-to-peer electronic cash for the Internet. It is fully decentralized, with no central bank involved and requires no trusted third parties to operate.
Bitcoin Cash is different from the original Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash is the continuation of the Bitcoin project as a peer-to-peer digital cash. It is a fork of the Bitcoin blockchain ledger, with upgraded consensus rules that allow it to grow and scale.
Bitcoin Cash was created because the legacy of Bitcoin code had a maximum limit of 1MB of data per block, or about 3 transactions per second. Although technically simple to raise this limit, the community could not reach a consensus, even after years of debate.
Zcash (ZEC) is another Crypto currency like Bitcoin but with a few different features.
Like Bitcoin it is based on a decentralized blockchain but allows for anonymity behind transaction amounts and parties involved.
Using Bitcoin if you know someone’s address you can follow their transactions and you can see all of the addresses and their transaction amounts – so it’s quite clear to see how much money is moving around,
with ZCash all the information is encrypted.
The Zcash total coin supply is going to be 21 million coins like Bitcoin,
and it even follows the same issuance rate with 21m ZEC being issued over 131 years, but instead of having 10 minute blocks, ZCash will have a 2.5 minute block average with 4 times bigger block rewards that halve every 4 years.
Monero is known as XMR.
Monero is an open-source, privacy-oriented cryptocurrency that was launched in April 2014.
The developers involved introduced this innovative cryptocurrency without setting aside any for themselves,
and the team has relied on donations and the broader community to further development.
Monero uses a proof-of-work (PoW) algorithm that was designed to be accessible to a wide range of processors,
a specification that was included to ensure that mining was open to many different parties instead of just large mining pools.
While some market observers might interpret this volatility as making Monero less credible,
sharp price fluctuations provide opportunities for traders. Traders can buy Monero using both FIAT currencies and cryptocurrencies, which might motivate them to buy and sell it in an attempt to make a profit. They might also use the currency as a hedge for other cryptocurrencies.
Litecoin was announced in 2011 with the title of the silver coin, this digital currency has the one of the highest market caps running just behind its fellow digital currencies. Litecoin has a coin limit of 84 million coins, this is higher than Bitcoin that has limit of 21 million coins.
The main difference is that Litecoin can confirm transactions must faster than bitcoin. The implications of that are as follows:
• Litecoin can handle a higher volume of transactions thanks to its faster block generation.
If Bitcoin were to try to match this, it would require significant updates to the code that everyone on the Bitcoin network is currently running.
• The disadvantage of this higher volume of blocks is that the Litecoin blockchain will be proportionately larger than Bitcoin’s, with more orphaned blocks.
• The faster block time of Litecoin reduces the risk of double spending attacks – this is theoretical in the case of both networks having the same hashing power.
Ripple is also known as XRP.
The first thing to know is that Ripple is both a platform and a currency.
The Ripple platform is an open source protocol which is designed to allow fast and cheap transactions.
Unlike Bitcoin that was never intended to be a simple payment machine, Ripple is definitely going to rule all the international transactions worldwide.
XRP is a token used for representing the transfer of value across the Ripple Network.
The main purpose of XRP is to be a mediator for other - both cryptocurrencies and fiat - exchanges.
The best way to describe XRP is a ‘Joker’. Not the creepy Batman enemy, but the card that can be any other card.
If you want to exchange dollars to euro, it can be dollar with dollars and euro with euros to minimize the commission.
As highlighted above, the transaction cost on Ripple is $0.00001.
The protocol as a working prototype was created away back in 2004.
Other digital coins
Digital currencies – Digital money or electronic money or electronic currency is distinct from physical (such as banknotes and coins).
It exhibits properties similar to physical currencies but allows for instantaneous transactions and borderless transfer-of-ownership.
Examples include virtual currencies and cryptocurrencies.
Like traditional money, these currencies may be used to buy physical goods and services but may also be restricted to certain communities such as for use inside an on-line game or social network.
Digital currency is a money balance recorded electronically on a stored-value card or other device.
Another form of electronic money is network money, allowing the transfer of value on computer networks, particularly the Internet.
Electronic money is also a claim on a private bank or other financial institution such as bank deposits.
There are hundreds of digital currencies like NEM, IOTA, DASH. Ox and more.
These currencies are with lower market caps than Bitcoin, Ethereum and lite coin, however all of them gained huge positives over the last few years.