The bitcoin boom propelled cryptocurrencies into the limelight in late 2017 when the value of the bitcoin rose to $20,000. Its rapid rise was a major catalyst for much further development in the cryptocurrency market. Although the value plunged dramatically in February 2018, wiping out around a quarter of the value of most cryptocurrencies in just one day, the cryptocurrency market is still developing and here are a list of the lesser known cryptocurrencies that you should know about!
Cardano is not in itself a form of cryptocurrency. Cardano’s cryptocurrency is called ADA and was launched in September 2017. Cardano is a digital platform that will eventually be able to run decentralised apps or ‘dapps’ in the future using Blockchain. This is distributed ledger technology, removing the need to rely on just one single server or data storage solution. Cardano (or ADA) is considered to be part of a third generation blockchain, and is the first blockchain that was developed by engineers and researchers.
Plans are in place to develop the ability to create smart contracts through Cardano. These will be legal contracts that will support future business deals and ecommerce via the platform.
Stellar was launched in 2015, its digital asset is known as Lumens (XLM). Stellar is a not-for-profit digital platform that enables fast, low cost transactions between people, banks and payment systems across borders. It enables users to trade both regular and cryptocurrencies more easily. It works from a network of servers, and the more servers that join the Stellar network the better, as this means the network will keep going, even if some servers stop working.
Dogecoin (DOGE) is one of the lesser known cryptocurrencies launched in 2013 as “a joke currency”. It is very easy to buy Dogecoin by setting up a digital wallet on your computer or mobile. Dogecoin is a cryptocurrency that is not just traded but can actually be used online, for example to ‘tip’ people for providing useful digital content.
Like Cardano, Komodo is another cryptocurrency trading platform that operates off Blockchain, meaning no provider will hold data or be responsible for its operations. It claims to be completely anonymous, highly secure, and very technologically nimble. Users can buy Komodo (KMD) cryptocurrency alongside other forms of cryptocurrency and store it in an online wallet called an Agama wallet.
Zcash launched in 2016, and it is a cryptocurrency which claims to provide a greater level of privacy for traders compared to other more well-known currencies such as Bitcoin. It is very similar to Bitcoin, as it was developed on the same code base, and also has a 21 million unit fixed total supply.
Monero is a highly secure cryptocurrency launched in April 2014. It is often used for illicit activities as balances and transactions are completely hidden. Like some other cryptocurrencies, it operates on a Proof of Work system. It runs off an obfuscated public ledger, which means anyone can send a transaction, but nobody will see who sent it, where it is going or what the value is.
With so many new developments it is clear that cryptocurrency is here to stay, but if you want to invest, make sure you do your research before diving in.