While Bitcoin has become a household name, learning about some of the other cryptocurrencies can help your understanding of this innovative new technology. Currently, there are thousands of cryptocurrencies on the market. And each comes with the goal of solving a specific problem in the market, or offering some real utility to the world.
So, today we’re going to break down 10 cryptocurrencies to consider besides Bitcoin. Buckle up, this is where crypto gets really interesting.
1) Ethereum (ETH)
Let’s start with Ethereum. Ethereum is the second-largest crypto by market cap and the silver to Bitcoin’s gold. But unlike Bitcoin, Ethereum is not just a form of digital currency. But it’s also a platform that facilitates the creation of smart contracts, decentralised applications and other cryptocurrency projects. It’s essentially a decentralised version of the internet. A place where people can do just about anything you can think of, without middlemen and third parties being involved.
Much of the cryptocurrency ecosystem relies and is built upon Ethereum’s blockchain. So, Ethereum isn’t likely to be going anywhere anytime soon. The vast majority of crypto holders have some exposure to both Bitcoin and Ethereum as these two cryptocurrencies make up a significant part of crypto’s total market share.
Ethereum’s cryptocurrency Ether (ETH) can be purchased like any other crypto investment. However, what you are really getting when you invest in Ethereum is a piece of the infrastructure that is powering a huge portion of the crypto and DeFi (decentralised finance) space.
2) Litecoin (LTC)
Litecoin (LTC) is another popular and well-established coin that is often referred to as a close sibling of Bitcoin. Although Litecoin is identical to Bitcoin in many ways (it is essentially digital cash), it was designed to address some of Bitcoin’s shortcomings. And there are a few key differences that make this altcoin worth considering.
Firstly, Litecoin’s transaction speed far exceeds that of Bitcoin’s. Charlie Lee, Litecoin’s creator, designed Litecoin to be able to confirm and process transactions four times faster than Bitcoin. Lee is also recognised as one of the major names in the crypto space. This adds a whole lot of legitimacy and interest to Litecoin, due to his expertise and impressive track record.
Another way that Litecoin differs from Bitcoin is that it has a higher supply of coins (84 million compared to Bitcoin’s 21 million). While this means the price of a single Litecoin may never reach the astronomical heights of a single Bitcoin, it’s an attractive alternative for people who feel they were a little late to the Bitcoin party.
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3) Cardano (ADA)
Supported by a world-class team of developers and advisors, Cardano (ADA) is one cryptocurrency you should keep an eye on. Cardano is a blockchain and smart contract platform (like Ethereum) that is designed to run everyday financial applications that are currently used by individuals, organisations, and governments around the world.
The finished product is still in the works. But Cardano distinguishes itself from other cryptos through a commitment to sustainability and peer-reviewed scientific research, which are the foundations of all updates made on the platform.
Despite not yet being fully functional, Cardano has seen some incredible support and price action. This is due to the fact that the team and developers behind it are second to none. As one of the largest cryptos by market cap, Cardano is sure to make some serious waves in the future.
Where to buy Crypto in NZ
The display order does not reflect any ranking or rating by Canstar. The table does not include all providers in the market.
|Provider||Fiat Currencies||Bitcoin||Other Currencies||Est.|
|Easy Crypto||NZD, AUD||Yes||100+||2018|
|Independent Reserve||NZD, AUD, USA||Yes||24||2013|
This information is not an endorsement by Canstar of cryptocurrency or any specific provider. Canstar is providing factual information supplied by providers. Cryptocurrencies are speculative, complex and involve significant risks. Canstar is not providing a recommendation for your individual circumstances or in relation to any particular product or provider.
4) Binance Coin (BNB)
Binance Coin (BNB) is what is known as an exchange token, which means it’s native to the Binance exchange. While it is not decentralised, like most other cryptocurrencies, due to its connection to the Binance exchange, it is one of the most popular coins to purchase and its use-case is undeniable.
Binance is currently the largest crypto exchange in the world, and the Binance BNB token can be used to lower your transaction fees while trading on the platform. Additionally, BNB is also the native token of the Binance Chain and the Binance Smart Chain (BSC). And both have seen some serious growth in recent times. It’s not a pure cryptocurrency, but BNB could be a solid investment to consider.
5) Polkadot (DOT)
Polkadot (DOT) is an innovative blockchain protocol that aims to simplify cross-chain communication and interoperability, bringing multiple blockchains into one network. It is essentially a platform that allows diverse blockchains to transfer messages and anything of value in a way that is secure and trustworthy.
While this kind of tech can be hard for newcomers to wrap their minds around, Polkadot brings some valuable utility to the crypto ecosystem. And it is one of the most promising cryptocurrencies on the market.
6) Theta Network (THETA)
Now here’s a cryptocurrency with a great use case. Theta Network (THETA) harnesses the power of people’s untapped computer bandwidth to offer a more efficient, blockchain-based, video streaming service. Users on Theta Network are incentivised with the blockchain’s cryptocurrency, called Theta Fuel, to share their computer’s unused bandwidth with others nearby, relaying video to people in the area and allowing everyone to enjoy fast video streaming at a low cost.
This means that instead of having video relayed to you, through multiple nodes and from faraway places, which is highly inefficient,, people can now share their computer’s bandwidth with people in their neighbourhood. Doing so earns cryptocurrency in exchange for their participation. This can then be used to purchase services and stream video on the network. Theta Network is a particularly promising project, with the co-founders of both Youtube and Twitch joining on as project advisors.
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7) Solana (SOL)
In the world of blockchain technology, scalability is one of the biggest challenges. Networks face limitations in terms of transaction speed and confirmation times. As their networks grow, so do these limitations. Solana (SOL) is an innovative blockchain designed to address the scalability issue of Ethereum and other blockchains. On Solana’s network, you can pay transaction fees and interact with smart contracts with SOL, the network’s native cryptocurrency. You can easily invest in SOL with a trusted crypto exchange.
Unlike other blockchains, Solana can handle thousands of transactions per second without compromising security or decentralisation. Solana is essentially a fast, secure, and censorship-resistant blockchain that provides a perfect place for developers to build decentralised applications at scale. It has often been referred to as one of Ethereum’s most formidable competitors, and it has some very legitimate partnerships. This indicates that Solana isn’t likely to be going anywhere soon.
8) VeChain (VET)
Vechain (VET) is a blockchain platform created for use in business and supply chain management processes. Its primary goal is to streamline processes and the information flow for complex supply chains through the use of blockchain technology.
VeChain is part of a range of distributed ledger technologies (DLTs) that are looking to revolutionise the corporate supply chain and logistics space. It has made a name for itself in the industry and a number of large enterprises are already using it for supply chain management and inventory tracking purposes.
9) Tether (USDT) – Stablecoins
If you’re interested in crypto, then you should learn a bit about stablecoins. Tether (USDT) is a hybrid form of cryptocurrency pegged to the US dollar. This means it doesn’t fluctuate in value like other cryptocurrencies. USDT is 100% backed by actual USD in Tether’s reserve account. It is the most widely used stablecoin and has many use-cases for exchanges that don’t offer direct fiat to crypto trading.
For example, along with being a handy currency for making everyday payments, USDT is a popular place for investors to keep their money as it is a stable store of value that can be easily converted into a variety of cryptocurrencies. Some other popular stablecoins include TUSD, PAXG and BUSD.
10) Reserve Rights (RSR)
Reserve Rights (RSR) is a project that provides a safe and stable place for people from developing countries to store their assets in times of economic instability. While this is not one of the most well-known projects in the space (yet), RSR has a reputable team, a devoted community and a much-needed use-case.
Reserve Rights consist of its own stablecoin called the Reserve Token (RSV). This can be used, held and spent the way regular money is spent. This stablecoin is stabilised by the cryptocurrency RSR, which is what investors buy if they want to invest and support the project. For more information on this innovative project, click here.
Should you invest in cryptocurrency?
Ultimately, whether or not you invest in cryptocurrency is a personal decision. Because despite what some believe, no one can say for sure how these coins will perform in the future. But before you invest in cryptocurrency, or any stocks for that matter, you should ask yourself a few questions. These should include:
- Do you know what you’re investing in, like really understand what the company or coin does?
- Is there potential for future growth?
- Can you afford to lose your investment?
Remember, to always do your research before investing in anything, and past performance is not an indicator of future success.
About the author of this page
Nico Lim is an experienced writer, bringing over 5 years of experience to his role of Head of Content at Digital Surge. He has a keen interest in cryptocurrency, the Blockchain and technology that can simplify and enhance our everyday lives. He holds a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Sociology from Monash University.