Bitcoin has become a byword for cryptocurrency. The pioneering crypto soars high in the crypto world in terms of popularity and market capitalization. However, if you are looking to diversify your crypto holdings, you can consider a number of Bitcoin alternatives, such as Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple, Cardano, and Binance Coin.
Top 5 Bitcoin alternatives
Let’s take a look at the top 5 Bitcoin alternatives out of a total pool of some 20,000 cryptocurrencies. We discuss each of them with reasons backing the selection.
Ethereum, the second-largest crypto by market cap, is an open platform that users manage, much similar to Bitcoin.
Yet, specific differences mark the number one and two coins. The Ethereum network functions through “smart contracts,” agreements written in computer code and uploaded to the decentralized ledger, blockchain.
Ethereum trades at $1,644.96 (as of 24 February 2023).
Reasons to invest in Ethereum
ETH provides one of the most secure investment options available, ranking among the top 10 cryptos in terms of its price and stability.
Additionally, you can use it in more locations than you might think, and it is likely that the number of locations that accept crypto will continue to grow over the next few years. Ethereum already possesses a sizable and active user base, a comprehensive feature set, and ongoing development. Ethereum is the best Bitcoin alternative as of now.
Cardano is a blockchain platform that uses proof-of-stake consensus. Crypto enthusiasts consider it as representing the next phase of the Ethereum platform. The blockchain is adaptable and a scalable platform for the execution of smart contracts.
In fact, Cardano was labeled the “Ethereum killer” and a valuable substitute to Bitcoin during its launch.
Charles Hoskinson, a co-founder of Ethereum, launched Cardano with a goal in mind—an energy-efficient crypto that supported fast transactions with low transaction fees.
Reasons to invest in Cardano
Given the fact that the token has seen better days, this may not be the optimal time to invest in Cardano. As of the beginning of January 2023, it was trading at $0.269359, a fall of over 89% from its all-time high.
Investing in Cardano can be advantageous as it uses less energy and is superior to other crypto regarding smart contracts.
Polkadot is a blockchain platform and crypto. It serves the purpose of weaving different blockchains together. It does this by joining multiple blockchains with one another (like Bitcoin and Ethereum, for example). Polkadot is often called a multi-chain network as it can combine multiple networks into a single entity (unlike Bitcoin).
Polkadot is analogous to Bitcoin in that it can perform the functions of a token ( DOT) and a decentralized exchange.
Polkadot’s goal is to level the playing field to facilitate more effective innovation across the various blockchain networks. Polkadot utilizes not one but two different blockchains: a primary “relay” network that handles permanent transactions and “para chains” that are used for user-created blockchains.
Reasons to invest in Polkadot
Polkadot intends to provide improvements in terms of scalability, which relates to the number of transactions a network can process in one second, as well as leadership for protocol improvements or changes.
The fact that the Polkadot network can communicate with other blockchains sets it apart from competing cryptos and makes it an attractive investment option.
Solana is an open-source and public blockchain platform. It is both a type of crypto and a versatile platform for operating applications that do not rely on a central authority. You can use the SOL token on the Solana network for staking and paying transaction fees. Solana’s primary goal is to increase the speed and scalability of crypto transactions.
Users seeking an alternative to Ethereum have shown much interest in Solana, which is popular in the DeFi (decentralized finance) and NFT spaces. Thanks to Solana’s support for smart contracts, new NFT projects are beginning to emerge on the platform.
People who are looking for Bitcoin alternatives that are fast and reasonably priced should consider using Solana.
Reasons to invest in Solana
On the Solana blockchain, well-known NFT projects are currently in the process of being developed. If you think NFTs are the future of finance, Solana should be on your investment radar.
Avalanche is a blockchain that runs on proof-of-stake protocol, is open-source, decentralized, and features smart contract capabilities. The network claims that its platform for smart contracts is the one that processes transactions the quickest among blockchains. Avalanche’s goal is to provide a highly scalable blockchain without compromising decentralization or security in the process.
You can pay for transactions on the Avalanche blockchain with the network’s native currency AVAX.
Reasons to invest in Avalanche
If you’re looking for something fresh and unique, Avalanche is something you should consider. The project is expanding at a rapid pace.
As of January 2023, one AVAX token is worth $12.04, representing a drop of more than 91% from its all-time high. However, it has zoomed 332% since its inception on 31 December, 2020.
If you wish to start investing in the crypto market, you can choose from a wide variety of alternative cryptocurrencies available. Bitcoin has dominated the crypto space since its launch in 2009. Yet, there are viable alternatives you can consider, as we have discussed. However, as always, do your research before investing.
Is Ethereum similar to Bitcoin in functionality?
While Ethereum and Bitcoin share some features, they serve different purposes. Both are cryptocurrencies, but Ethereum’s primary focus is on smart contracts and decentralized applications (DApps), offering more complex functionality beyond Bitcoin’s simple peer-to-peer transfer.
What sets Cardano (ADA) apart from other cryptocurrencies?
Cardano (ADA) differentiates itself with a research-driven approach, aiming for scalability, sustainability, and interoperability. It uses a layered architecture and peer-reviewed research to enhance security and efficiency in blockchain and smart contract technology.
How does Polkadot’s technology foster blockchain interoperability?
Polkadot uses a unique relay chain and parachain structure to promote blockchain interoperability. Parachains are specialized blockchains that can connect to the relay chain, facilitating data and asset transfers among different blockchains. This modular approach enhances scalability and cross-chain communication.