Bitcoin has claimed the top spot in the cryptocurrency race with an astonishing $256,804,136,750 market capitalization. The supply of Bitcoin is influenced by the overall amount that can actually be mined, which is currently capped at 21 billion Bitcoins. This fixed supply of Bitcoins makes it similar to other commodities and advocates of the cryptocurrency often relate it to gold. When investors are evaluating the longevity of Bitcoin, this characteristic makes the cryptocurrency much more appealing. But with the recent volatility that Bitcoin has experienced, some investors are looking towards other cryptocurrencies that could catch the next wave of speculators.
Each contender has a unique infrastructure that can attract the late investors who are fearful of missing out on the huge returns being made in the crypto space.
Ripple continues to gain ground on Bitcoin in terms of market capitalization and still stands as a privately funded company. Because of the centralized nature of Ripple, developers are able to facilitate global financial transactions much faster. Some serious players have started to utilize Ripple in their day to day operations, including Bank of America ($BAC), UBS ($UBS), and Santander ($SANPRA). Unlike Ripple, Bitcoin is still ran by an open-source community that has to reach consensus in order to make any changes to the technology. Given the dominance of Ripple in the financial sector and the companies ability to adapt quickly to the payment exchange network, this cryptocurrency could continue to add to it’s parabolic valuation.
Ethereum is a distributed blockchain network that has the ability to run programming code of any decentralized application. The Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) is the core technology running on the Ethereum network and it gives developers a platform to offer their applications. Instead of having to develop a blockchain for each individual application, Ethereum streamlines the process on a single platform. Bitcoin was established as a peer to peer electronic cash system with a blockchain focused on tracking ownership of Bitcoins. This limits the ability to expand beyond the original Bitcoin blockchain technology and restricts the use of different applications. As the Ethereum network grows, the blockchain application platform will disrupt finance, real estate, and insurance making this a viable option for new investors.
Cardano is fully open-source and offers a ground breaking proof of stake algorithm. Bitcoin uses a proof of work system, which means that the probability of mining a block is entirely dependent on the amount of work that is done by the Bitcoin miner. Cardano’s proof of stake structure makes the process of mining reliant on the amount of coins that the miner currently holds. This encourages long term participation and limits the use of electricity to crack computationally heavy problems. Cardano markets their cryptocurrency as the “re-imagined Bitcoin” that fixes the original design flaws. The crypto space is heating up and these groups are in the running for the highest market share.
For more information on some of these top competitors visit, Blockgeeks.