Bitcoin has seen tremendous growth in 2017, priced at around 4.5k USD , thus limiting further investment due to the higher value. And that’s why, like altcoins, Ethereum and Dash Limelight are collecting these days.
If you ask me, investing in altcoins is a good strategy because they are newer and lower-priced than bitcoins , and thus, have a greater chance of rising over a period of time. And remind you that the value of one bitcoin has increased to this value in about 8+ years.
Ok, let’s discuss about the best altcoins you can invest your time, efforts and money. Note that I chose these altcoins based on their business ideas and people’s interest as well as their market cap at the time of writing this post. Also, do not forget to study and understand the nature of crypto market before investing in it.
Ethereum [ETH] , unlike bitcoin (it is just a currency), is a decentralized, blockchain app platform that features smart contracts, DAO, DApps, etc. Ether is a crypto-fuel for Ethereum, that is, to use this platform. Required token
In short, you can understand it as the world’s first blockchain supercomputer that can run apps and services built on the blockchain.
- Max. Supply: 18 million / year
- Learn more about ether
Ethereum features and its ability to change the world forever, has caught everyone’s attention including corporations like Microsoft and individuals like you and me. It also attracts developers to use it to build their own features. It runs on the Ethereum network, a decentralized application using smart contracts , thus increasing its popularity and value.
And given the increase in usage of this platform, the price of ether crossed 400 USD in June 2017 , although it did not last long there. After moving to half the maximum price in a month, it gradually increased and was traded between 300 – 350 USD during August 2017 .
- 7 Safe Ethereum Wallets to Start With
- Top 10 Ethereum Exchange
2. Bitcoin Cash
Bitcoin Cash [BCH] is the first hard-forked cryptocurrency of bitcoin, and you can also say that it is the brother coin of bitcoin. Launched on 1 August 2017, this currency was born as a result of a civil war among the bitcoin community .
The cause of the conflict was to propose two solutions to the common problem , improving the efficiency of bitcoin networks.
- Max. Supply: 21 million (same as bitcoin)
As it is a tricky fork of bitcoin, everyone who had bitcoin on 1 August still has the same amount of bitcoin cash . Well, looking at the current price and expecting its growth in the near future, it is a beautiful treasure. In a month of its birth, the value of 1 BCH increased to near 1k USD but due to high volatility, it did not take time for its high price to fall down.
Wave [XRP] is a cross-border payment platform for financial institutions including banks, payment providers and digital asset exchanges. Unlike most other cryptocurrencies, which shy away from centralized institutions such as banks, Ripple has a different purpose of helping banks and sending money quickly, cheaply and certainly to similar organizations.
- Max. Supply: 100 trillion
- Learn more about Ripple
Although its price is not yet possessed by Bitcoin and other high-priced digital assets, it has seen a beautiful growth in 2017 . IT rose to near this price of 0.4 USD (I know if BTC is priced below USD 4.5k in view of its increasing demand) and potential use in reducing international money transfers as traditional money transfer fees. Seems too much.
Litecoin [LTC] is a digital currency born out of its drawbacks of bitcoin . Its network generates 4 times more coins than the bitcoin network, claims to confirm transactions faster , and uses script as a proof-of-work algorithm. Using scripts, Litoin tries to discourage mining using GPUs, FPGAs and ASICs .
- Max. Supply: 84 million (4x bitcoin)
- Learn more about Litecoin
If I talk about my place in cryptocurrency, Litcoin ranks less than ten in terms of market capitalization , and in July 2017 its price rose to around 55 USD. Although the price of LTC is not anywhere near BTC yet, seeing the large supply of coins, good investment and increasing adoption by individual investors, exchanges and traders.
Dash [Dash] , an open-source P2P cryptocurrency , “digital cash” as the brand itself. It is maintained by a self-funded, autonomous organization. It is built with various additional features such as Bitcoin, Litecoin and alikes such as InstantSend (instant transactions), PrivateSend (private transactions), and DGBB (decentralized governance).
- Max. Supply: 18.9 million (slightly less than bitcoin)
- Learn more about Dash
If you check its price, you will see the same high rise during 2017 as various others, and it is being said that its price went up to 320+ USD in July. If I consider market capitalization, looking at the rank list is less than ten. Keeping in mind its unique features that fill holes in bitcoin and other similar networks, Dash has the ability to rise and shine in the future .
6. Ethereum Classic
Ethereum Classic [ETC] was born out of Ethereum as Bitcoin Cash was born – due to a civil war among its early community. Having a hard fork of Ethereum , it is a decentralized software platform featuring smart contracts, DApps, DAO etc. and so on, a crypto-fuel, ie, the token required to use the ‘ classic ether ‘ platform .
- Max. Supply: 210 million (hard cap unlike Ethereum)
- Learn more about Ethereum Classic
Although it has been 2+ years since the platform was built, its price increase has not been seen as that of its older brother Ethereum – perhaps because it is not as popular as the others. In 2017, it also experienced growth and its experience The price reached 24 USD in July. As it is still very developed and it is gradually working to make its mark in the crypto world, it is worth a try.
BitConnect [BCC] is a currency similar to Bitcoin like Bitcoin and has some differences compared to Bitcoin, as well as a script-proof-of-work algorithm and support for a proof-of-stake that provides incentives for stakeholders. Additionally, I am quite surprised that BCC can be directly exchanged between members of its community without a central crypto asset exchange.
- Max. Supply: 28 million (33% more than bitcoin)
- Learn more about BitConnect
BitConnect Coin has seen major growth during the middle of 2017, although it is not yet a year old, and surprisingly it has grown to 130+ USD per coin in July. Growth is the result of increased demand, which is due to progress like self- paced transactions . I also liked its interest-bearing feature that allows you to earn interest by lending your coins to your community .
Zcash [ZEC] is designed to protect your payment history which is exposed by other cryptocurrencies – even previously known. Zcash extends Bitcoin to some extent and, being said, has two types of addresses – transparent (acting like bitcoin) and private (new additions). It also features shielded transactions which hides which sender, receiver and amount .
- Max. Supply: 21 million (same as bitcoin)
- Learn more about Zcash
Its popularity and growing demand are a result of its spectacular growth in privacy. Other privacy-focused currencies such as Monero. It has not been a year since its launch and Zcash has already crossed the 420 USD price mark during June 2017. However, it did not survive at that price and fell by almost half in just one month.
Monero [XMR] advertises itself as a ‘private digital currency’ It does not trade privacy for security’s sake. It is a blockchain-based currency like bitcoin but packs in additional privacy features as offered by secure currencies such as Dash and Zcash. Being a privacy-focused technology, Monero transactions are not traceable through blockchain unlike bitcoin.
- Max. Supply: ~ 18.4 million (less than bitcoin)
- Learn more about Monero
Transactions are private by mandate unlike Zcash, Monero , that is, the sender, receiver, and amount are all hidden, although the transactions are not as private as advertised. Although it is three years old, it did not see high demand and growth until October 2016 , after which it has been steadily increasing and its price increased to 90+ USD in August 2017.
NEO [NEO] , formerly Antshares, is a smart-economy software platform like Ethereum that also supports smart contracts. Unlike Ethereum which only supports solidity for writing programs on its platform, NEO, also known as the ‘Chinese Ethereum’, supports popular languages . In addition, NEO supports an identification protocol unlike other smart contract based coins.
- Max. Supply: 100 million (slightly less than 5x bitcoin)
- Learn more about NEO
NEO has too many differences or distinct features, e.g., it uses dBFT (delegated Byzantine defect tolerance) and does not have evidence or proof of function to secure its network. Although the NEO’s came out of ants that are three years old, it did not reach a high price until August 2017 – its price rose to 50+ USD , mostly due to high demand this month.
BitShares [BTS] is an Ethereum-like cryptocurrency that facilitates smart contracts, unlike Bitcoin. However it offers much more features than just smart contracts, such as BitAssets, DEX (Decentralized Exchange) such as BitConnect, etc. BitAssets. Smart currencies, eg, BitUSD are supported by a value of 1 USD, that is, a digital coin for the value of a real commodity.
- Max. Supply: 3.7 billion (about 176 times compared to bitcoin)
- Learn more about BitShares
Despite it being available for three years, it did not see much increase in price until 2017. The price went up to 0.42+ USD in July. I know it is incomparable for the price of Ethereum, Zcash or others. But its high supply is the reason behind its low price, others rank it under 25 if I talk about its place in the market capitalization list.
Namecoin [NMC] is a decentralized, blockchain-based domain registrar (like GoDaddy) that gives you names under uncensored ‘.bit’ top-level domains. For example, if you register a domain name ‘aksinghnet’ with Namecoin, you will get a domain ‘aksinghnet.bit’, which can be seen above. Browsed using their own wallet software only.
- Max. Supply: 21 million (same as bitcoin)
- Learn more about Namkeen
The purpose of Namecoin is to provide human readable yet anonymous domain names unlike Tor and I2P whose domain names are sets of some random digits. Although Namcoin is the first Bitcoin fork and has been in existence for three years now, its price is not as high as Bitcoin and Ethereum. It was the highest price 2.70+ USD as of August 2017.
Sia [SC] is a decentralized cloud storage platform as opposed to centralized cloud storage platforms such as Google Drive and Dropbox. It is built on blockchain technology and is not just a currency unlike Bitcoin and LitCoin. Yes, you need a token or coin name Siacoin to use your cloud storage in the same way you need ether to use the Ethereum platform.
- Max. Supply: Unlimited
- Learn more about Siacoin
Siacoin, like other blockchain-based solutions, relies on its features and popularity to rise and shine. And Secoin is amazing – just think about paying for storing personal files on a blockchain from where it can never be realistically lost. Siacoin is 1.5+ years old, but has seen a spurt in its price recently. In June 2017, its price rose to 0.022 USD .
Komodo [KMD] is a brand new cryptocurrency with other coins rich in great features . It provides smart contracts, decentralized exchange etc. It is built with the features of Zcash, thus Komodo is transparent as well as supports private addresses and anonymous transactions . In addition, it does not use delayed proof-of-work (dPoW) and POW or POS to secure the network.
- Max. Supply: 200 million (about 10x of bitcoin)
- Learn more about Komodo
Komodo is trying to solve the hurdles of adopting cryptocurrency and what really surprises me is its plan to launch 32 independent, fiat-pegged cryptocurrencies . This means, you will be able to convert between fiat and digital currencies more easily than ever before.
Although Komodo is a young platform (not one year old) that is still in development and is ready for general use in the near future, it is still growing in popularity as people are understanding its potential use. In June 2017, it traded at a maximum price of 2.40 USD .
Steem [STEEM] , unlike others on this list, is a social media platform that encourages people to share interesting content and be rewarded . That means, you earn this cryptocurrency simply by posting or curating content and commenting on others’ posts. As you might have guessed by now, Steem Bitcoin is a completely different cryptocurrency than ethereum and alikes.
- Max. Supply: Unlimited
- Learn more about Steem
Although the price of Steem was better than 4.30+ USD in August 2016, the maximum rose in August 2017 . Up to 2.50+ USD as of August 2017 . Unlike Bitem and Zcash, the supply of Steem is unlimited, so its price may decrease with increasing supply but a rising demand can balance it . This means that Steem will only grow with increasing popularity and user base.
The popularity of digital assets has increased sharply this year, with cryptocurrency prices soaring , surprising everyone. It was no surprise that we saw bitcoin crossing 4.5k USD and crypto market capitalization surpassing 100 billion USD.
That being said, it is difficult to predict the market in the future. But as it is mostly driven by supply and demand , and some currencies are supported by good, useful technologies, we can see the market growing over time. However, it is not clear. Therefore, I would advise you to study the crypto market before investing in it.