A cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency that is meant to be a medium of exchange now cryptocurrency is quite similar to real-world currency just that it does not have any physical embodiment.
Bitcoin is a decentralized cryptocurrency originally described in a 2008 whitepaper by a person, or group of people, using the alias Satoshi Nakamoto.
It was launched soon after, in January 2009. Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer online currency, meaning that all transactions happen directly between equal, independent network participants, without the need for any intermediary to permit or facilitate them. Bitcoin was created, according to Nakamoto’s own words, to allow “online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution.”
Some concepts for a similar type of decentralized electronic currency precede BTC, but Bitcoin holds the distinction of being the first-ever cryptocurrency to come into actual use.
Ethereum is a decentralized open-source blockchain system that features its own cryptocurrency, Ether. ETH works as a platform for numerous other cryptocurrencies, as well as for the execution of decentralized smart contracts.
Ethereum was first described in a 2013 whitepaper by Vitalik Buterin. Buterin, along with other co-founders, secured funding for the project in an online public crowd sale in the summer of 2014. The project team managed to raise $18.3 million in Bitcoin, and Ethereum’s price in the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) was $0.311, with over 60 million Ether sold. Taking Ethereum’s price now, this puts the return on investment (ROI) at an annualized rate of over 270%, essentially almost quadrupling your investment every year since the summer of 2014.
USDT is a stable coin (stable-value cryptocurrency) that mirrors the price of the U.S. dollar, issued by a Hong Kong-based company Tether. The token’s peg to the USD is achieved via maintaining a sum of commercial paper, fiduciary deposits, cash, reserve repo notes, and treasury bills in reserves that is equal in USD value to the number of USDT in circulation.
Cardano is a proof-of-stake blockchain platform that says its goal is to allow “changemakers, innovators and visionaries” to bring about positive global change.
The open-source project also aims to “redistribute power from unaccountable structures to the margins to individuals” — helping to create a society that is more secure, transparent and fair.
Binance Coin (BNB)
Binance is the biggest cryptocurrency exchange globally based on daily trading volume. Binance aims to bring cryptocurrency exchanges to the forefront of financial activity globally. The idea behind Binance’s name is to show this new paradigm in global finance — Binary Finance, or Binance.
Ripple and RippleNet. XRP is the currency that runs on a digital payment platform called RippleNet, which is on top of a distributed ledger database called XRP Ledger. While RippleNet is run by a company called Ripple, the XRP Ledger is open-source and is not based on blockchain, but rather the previously mentioned distributed ledger database.
Solana is a highly functional open source project that banks on blockchain technology’s permissionless nature to provide decentralized finance (Defi) solutions. While the idea and initial work on the project began in 2017, Solana was officially launched in March 2020 by the Solana Foundation with headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.
USD Coin (USDC)
USD Coin (known by its ticker USDC) is a stable coin that is pegged to the U.S. dollar on a 1:1 basis. Every unit of this cryptocurrency in circulation is backed up by $1 that is held in reserve, in a mix of cash and short-term U.S. Treasury bonds. The Centre consortium, which is behind this asset, says USDC is issued by regulated financial institutions.
Polkadot is an open-source sharding multichain protocol that facilitates the cross-chain transfer of any data or asset types, not just tokens, thereby making a wide range of blockchains interoperable with each other. This interoperability seeks to establish a fully decentralized and private web, controlled by its users, and simplify the creation of new applications, institutions and services.
Dogecoin (DOGE) is based on the popular “doge” Internet meme and features a Shiba Inu on its logo. The open-source digital currency was created by Billy Markus from Portland, Oregon and Jackson Palmer from Sydney, Australia, and was forked from Litecoin in December 2013. Dogecoin’s creators envisaged it as a fun, light-hearted cryptocurrency that would have greater appeal beyond the core Bitcoin audience, since it was based on a dog meme. Tesla CEO Elon Musk posted several tweets on social media that Dogecoin is his favorite coin.