DEFINITION of ‘Altcoin’

Altcoins are the alternative cryptocurrencies launched after the success of Bitcoin. Generally, they project themselves as better substitutes to Bitcoin. The success of Bitcoin as the first peer-to-peer digital currency paved the way for many to follow. Many altcoins are trying to target any perceived limitations that Bitcoin has and come up with newer versions with competitive advantages. There is a great variety of altcoins.

What Is Ethereum?

Ethereum is a cryptocurrency that operates on a Blockchain, in certain ways, not very unlike Bitcoin. However, the main difference between Bitcoin and Ethereum is Ethereum’s use of Smart Contracts. While Bitcoin is anonymous, Ethereum’s Smart Contracts application creates a living document transmitted via code between merchants. In doing so, Ethereum can better prevent crime or other problems, since all transactions are inherently tracked. The Ethereum website states it nicely: “These apps run on a custom built blockchain, an enormously powerful shared global infrastructure that can move value around and represent the ownership of property.”

Since Ethereum has this Smart Contract aspect, it is a good currency to use in business and among major institutions. Embedded in the contract can be agreement about both past and future payments, as well as other conditions and uses yet to be imagined.

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History of Ethereum

The person who is credited with conceiving of the initial Ethereum concept is Vitalik Buterin. He also worked with Bitcoin.

When it came to Bitcoin, Buterin was interested in adopting a code or method of communication along the blockchain. However, Bitcoiners didn’t agree. So he came up with the idea of another crypto with this kind of communication. Those who were first on board included Vitalik, Mihai Alisie, Anthony Di Lorio, and Charles Hoskinson.

In 2014, the project began. Amazingly, that’s only a few years ago, and yet today, Ethereum is worth about 250 USD per piece. The summer of 2014 saw an online sale of the item. That’s when things started to kick off.

Various models were generated as the product came into being. Finally, there was a public release under the name of “Olympic.” 25,000 pieces of ether were tested. Next was the Frontier release phrase in in 2015.

Naturally, upgrades have occurred since the release in order to ensure its ongoing success. They call these “milestones.” The most recent took care of processing, pricing, and security enhancements. There will be more upgrades like this in the future. IT is possible that either will change from hardware mining to virtual mining.

The project was developed by a Swiss company, and later, a non-profit foundation was developed to carry on the project.

Why Invest in Ethereum?

  • Ethereum holds promise for use among institutions. Thus, the potential utility is global and widespread
  • The Smart Contract ensures a degree of security and traceability
  • Other cryptos also use the ether blockchain
  • These factors mean promise for future use and value

Ethereum Cost

Ethereum has gone up tremendously in value. While it’s nowhere near Bitcoin, it’s averages about 250 USD.

Date

Value in USD

January 2016

0.95

July 2016

12.04

January 2017

8.24

July 2017

269.76

Ethereum Clients

Institutions that make use of Ethereum today may be part of the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance. Such institutions include:

  • Deloitte
  • Intel
  • ING
  • Microsoft
  • J.P. Morgan
  • National Bank of Canada
  • And many more

What Is Ripple?

Ripple was created by OpenCoin. OpenCoin was co-founded by Chris Larsen and Jed McCaleb from Mt. Gox. Many people on board the Ripple team come from Bitcoin.

Ripple’s main function is to make payments between banks easier and simpler. It aims to break down the walls that surround banking systems. Presently, transferring funds or making other transactions among banks can be both tedious and challenging. Ripple makes it easier.

Ripple’s intention is to work alongside Bitcoin.

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It allows easy currency transfer, converting easily from any currency. It addition, it hopes to make transfer between Bitcoin a lot easier.

It hopes to bring stability as well as make transferring more simple. As a peer-to-peer system, it goes through quickly.

To make a transaction, you have to pay only a portion of a ripple (about 1/1000th of a penny).

History of Ripple

Ryan Fugger created Rippleplay in Canada in 2004. It was intended as a decentralized monetary system through which people can make independent transactions through a global network.

Then, in 2011, another group added to this development by creating a digital currency system where transactions were agreed upon by all parties. This was different in nature than the creation of transactions via mining or blockchain. So, it was actually created in order to do away with Bitcoin’s need to rely on a specific, centralized exchanges, use less energy, and be quicker. This team joined up with Ryan Fugger, and they put their ideas together. Together, they created OpenCoin Inc.

Together, OpenCoin created the Ripple Transaction Protocol (RTXP). It creates a fast transfer of currency. The waiting time and the fees of other banking situations can be avoided. USD, Euro, RMB, and more can be transferred–even air miles.

Security is created because all the transactions depend on a single ledger. It operates by being constantly compared to a collectivity of servers which compare information about transactions. This helps to validate and confirm the legitimacy of transactions. These servers may belong to banks or mechants, or technically, any person who joins the network.

XRP, a digital currency, was also created at this time. It allows the institutions to transfer money quickly and easily.

In 2013, the XRP digital currency became fully incorporated into OpenCoin and linked with the Bitcoin Protocol via the Bitcoin Bridge. With this bridge, people on the Ripple network can send payments in various currencies to Bitcoin addresses. Soon after, they changed the name of OpenCoin to Ripple Labs. The Ripple software and server became free to use.

Ripple’s verification system can integrate easily with banks, creating easy transfer of funds.

More offshoot projects were developed. For example, an Iphone App was developed so Iphone users could easily transfer money to each other. They also considered a new Smart Contract system.

Ripple continued to offer its services to major financial institutions and corporations. These transactions can take place regardless of borders or currencies. Fidor Bank was the first bank to use Ripple. Cross-River Bank and CBW Bank joined. They began working with Earthport, a money transfer service. Earthport also works with Bank of America and HSBC. This created great growth for Ripple, marking it as one of the biggest cryptos.

Since then, many companies joined forces with Ripple. They also proclaimed themselves as being pro-government regulation. In 2015 and 2016, Ripple continued growing. In 2016, they garnered a BitLicense. And in Japan, 42 banks decided to create a network whereby Ripple will be used, and this number could grow. In 2016 Ripple also brought out a service specifically to transfer money between banks. Bank of America, CIBC, and RBC have joined, and many more.

These transactions could be recorded by using a ledger that would be common to all. The company also created its own cryptocurrency, a little like Bitcoin.

How Ripple Works

Ripple works in a simple way. When two parties want to make a transfer of funds, they can do so either by sending online payments via fiat currency or by Ripple currency XRP. When transferring XRP, Ripple’s internal ledger is used. If other assets are exchanged, Ripple will record the amount.

This system is banked by various securities. Users pick the currency they wish to transfer, so they have a say in what security they need. For example, if two people who send money (not XRP) to each other via Ripple agree that they feel secure with each other, they adjust the transaction amount on their own, in accordance to their own agreements.

If the two people do not know each other, Ripple will create the transaction by utilizing two parties that do have a security agreement in place. Everything is automatically balanced this way. “Rippling” basically means exchanging money through parties based on trust.

Why Invest in Ripple?

  • It had a strong market capitalization and is gaining value, however its price point is still under $1
  • It has the potential to become one of the best new cryptos
  • It is already integrated into the world’s greatest banking systems, so the growth potential is there
  • It is compatible with Bitcoin technology
  • It has unmatched potential in the financial world when it comes to working with banks and corporations to easily transfer money

Ripple Cost

Ripple has seen a great deal of growth, especially in 2017.

Ripple Value – Date

Ripple – Amount in USD

January 2014

0.0027043

July 2014

0.004056

January 2015

0.024383

July 2015

0.011014

January 2016

0.006007

July 2016

0.006711

January 2017

0.006396

July 2017

0.256709

Clients

Financial institutions that work with Ripple:

  • BMO
  • CIBC
  • RBC
  • Bank of America

What Is Monero?

Monero is a secure, private, untraceable currency. It is open-source and freely available to all.

Monero was developed to respond to the growing need for financial privacy. It notes how “we have seen a staggering amount of big corporations, banks, and governments have their records compromised, each time leaking information about their users, their practices, and their balance sheets.”

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Monero was developed in order to create a safer financial recluse. It tries to accomplish an ideal degree of “privacy, decentralization, and scalability.”

Their view is that currency needs to retain similar values in order to function in society. Without this aspect, these coins can be tracked.

Aspects of Monero include:

  • Security
  • Privacy
  • Untraceability

And yet it’s open sourced and available for all to use. Its development is based on donation and community.

At Monero, your transactions are invisible to others. “You are your own bank” in the sense that no one can see or control your transactions except you.

Monero is also attempting to reduce other problems in crypto currencies today, including the need for privacy. Firstly, Monero is fighting a battle to create complete privacy in transactions. It attempts to be untraceable. No one but the spender can trace where the funds are being sent and to whom. Contracts can be kept confidential. Monero also attempts to keep the networking infrastructure as private as possible. With a group named “Privacy Solutions,” they are trying to create an i2pm router in the system.

Even though complete privacy is a Monero option, the user can still select increased disclosure or view-only access.

Monero also strives to achieve greater levels of decentralization. They strive to be a different cryptocurrency in certain ways. For one, its energized by Proof of Work only. It uses a mining algorithm which can be employed by billions of devices. With a Smart Mining Program, it means that common folk can mine Monero.

New contributors and community members are always welcome at Monero, too.

In terms of scalability, Monero does not have an imposed limit on its blocks. They therefore question the concept that limiting blocksize creates market value.

Monero also creates a “permanent block reward” in order to motivate minors. The block reward will never be lower than 0.3 XMR

In terms of fungibility, Menoro has “plausible deniability”—you cannot see whether they have been spent or not. This protects them from potential black or whitelisting. All coins are equal. This trait is embedded in the coins.

History of Monero

Monero came about in 2014. It was actually called BitMonero, a combo of Bitcoin & Monero. It was quickly changed to Monero only. It’s part of the Crypto-Note base of Bytecoin. The speed was higher and the block time was, too. They also fixed many errors in previous codes. After Monero came about, the Proof of Work function which is unique to them came out, too. In 2017 Monero increased its aptitude in privacy. Others cannot see transactions or details. This is via the RingCT feature which has since grown in popularity.

How Monero Works

As already mentioned, Monero is based on concepts of extreme privacy. Here’s how it’s done.

For starters, when you buy Monero, you’ll get a special link and a unique key. Scan the key and you will find that the system seeks out your unique code in order to let you know if you have any transactions. This is a private address that’s not connected to your public one.

However, the public address you use to keep your information closeby is confidential. Your actual money is not connected to this address. And when you send money to another person’s Monero account, you only see a newly made up address—never their real one.

So how can you access your account? When you check out your wallet, it will do the job of scanning the whole blockchain–the list of all transactions–to see if any are for you. All in all, no one can see your transactions and you can’t see those of others.

There is an added security feature called “ring Signatures.” This creates something called “Transaction Mixing.” When you send money, others (randomly assorted) are sent too. This way, no one can tell where what’s coming from. This may also give the impression that you are busy with many transactions, when you’re not. All in all, Monero is custom designed to ensure no one can see what you do with your money.

Why Invest in Monero?

  • Wide price fluctuations, which makes it ideal for currency trading
  • It’s totally untraceable–this can be a huge selling point for institutions and political systems
  • As companies adopt other cryptos such as Ether and Ripple for fast large-scale transactions, the anonymity of Monero might likewise be utilized
  • It may appreciate in market value

Monero Cost

Monero has greatly appreciated in value over the past six months.

Monero – Date

Monero – Value per USD

July 2014

2.58

January 2015

0.43

July 2015

0.50

January 2016

0.50

July 2016

1.68

January 2017

15.20

July 2017

42.47

What Is Bitcoin Cash?

After two years of stormy discussions on the future of the currency, Bitcoin, the most popular cryptographic currency in the world, has split into two currencies. So, what is the meaning of this split and what are the implications for users?

What is divide?

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Division- or fork in English – is a situation where the blockchain, the software that forms the infrastructure of the cryptographic room, created two versions of the same piece that share a common “story”. The division may be temporary and may take up to a few hours or as in our case, a regular division and the creation of a new cryptographic currency.

The currency is going well in this moment. Why divide?

As we know, the Blockchain technology on which the Bitcoin is based uses data blocks, which are checked by the various computers on the network, and added to the database of all monetary transactions. However, since the Bitcoin network is limited to a block size of 1 MB, only 7 transactions per second (tps) can be verified. By way of comparison, Visa Worldwide validates about 2,000 transactions per second on average, with a maximum of 56,000 transactions per second. The result is a bottleneck that results in delays in Bitcoin’s transactions.

And when we say delay, we hear, for example, a user of Bitcoin who made a purchase in a store and had to wait 28 days to approve the transaction.

Everybody agrees that there is a problem. But then what?

The global Bitcoin community had two options to solve the problem.

Segwit2X – segregated witness – a preview of an emergency meeting of the Bitcoin community in New York. In short, the layout, which is supported by the currency developers community, involves two steps: first, dividing the information of each transaction so that it enters the block more efficiently, more effective verification mechanism; As part of the second phase of the plan, the size of each block is doubled to 2 MB, and by 2018 each block will be increased to 4 MB, making the verification process much more efficient and quick.

The great advantage of this solution is that it is a soft division (sort fork) which, on the one hand, allows an immediate increase in the volume of the blocks checked and, on the other hand, does not need to upgrade all nodes, such as the hard fork. The fear is that, within the framework of a “hard division”, all the junctions will not be upgraded, which will oblige them to reject the blocks legitimate, to refuse transactions, to load, to lose coins and, in short, to a big disorder. In addition, the change will require hardware upgrades and, therefore, a relatively small number of reactors will monitor transaction verification.

On the other hand, there is a small group of Bitcoin reactors, which support a drastic and immediate step and require an immediate increase of each block at 8 MB.

And …

As is appropriate for a decentralized currency, without the governor of a central bank defining the policy. It was decided to obtain community consent by running the Segwit2X trial and receiving “pings” approval. The goal was a positive response from 80 percent of users. Although Segwit2X seems to have approved the “soft division”, the miners group announced yesterday that the split came into effect on August 1. We have BTC Bitcoin and BCC cash bitcoin!

Will my Bitcoin be automatically converted to Bitcoin Cash?

No. In the first step, you need to know if your electronic wallet (purse) supports splitting. If so, the conversion will be done and you will have the same amount of Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash. Otherwise, you will need to pull your Bitcoins to a local portfolio with your key and transfer them to an electronic wallet that supports splitting.

How much are current currencies?

Of course, values ​​change every second, but from that moment on, a Cash Bitcoin is worth about $ 425; The Bitcoin itself is $ 2,736.

What is the rarity of this split?

The division of cryptographic pieces is not uncommon. Recently, the Etherium part was split into Etherium Classic. But Bitcoin is certainly the dominant and most popular cryptographic currency in the world, hence the importance of movement.

And who will win?

Here no one is willing to prophesy. Only time will tell if Bitcoin Cash will survive, equaling or even exceeding the original Bitcoin.

What Is Litecoin?

Litecoin came to be within the MIT/X11 licensing. These super-speedy coins are exchanged via open source protocol, and, much like Bitcoin, are totally decentralized. People claim that Litecoin is more advanced than its sibling coin, Bitcoin, due to some technological advancements and repairs it features. These include:

  • Using segregated witness to make coin transfer very fast
  • Use of lightning network
  • Minor cost of transacting

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This increases the speed of transactions between more of them can happen simultaneously. This makes Litecoin a more practical and effective digital currency to be used across mercantile systems.  There are also many more Litecoins than there are Bitcoins. Today, there is much talk over a potential upcoming Bitcoin fork. It may be helpful to consider that Litecoin was itself a fork of Bitcoin.

History of Litecoin

Litecoin came to the public in 2011. Its protocol was offered open source, and it was created and distributed by Charlie Lee. Then, in 2013, an upgrade was done on Litecoin in order to protect its continuity and ensure its security.

Another version came out shortly thereafter. This version was less expensive to use. It was given out to people who were already using Litecoin and also to those using online forums.

In the fall of 2013, the worth of Litecoin grew tremendously. It is now worth about fifty USD. It is among the most popular cryptocurrencies and operating at incredible speed.

Finally, a 2014 upgrade was done, to further perfect the currency and adjust final problems.

How Litecoin Works

Litecoin is tailored after the Bitcoin blockchain, however, so far, its SegWit usage has been one of the defining distinction between the coins. SegWit allows for incredibly fast processing of transactions.

Why Invest in Litecoin?

Litecoin is an incredibly fast-acting digital currency. Therefore, it has promise that it can be used in worldwide for everyday transactions. It can become a common currency.

  •         There are low transaction costs.
  •         It is increasing in value.

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