In recent, we are experiencing a massive boom in the cryptocurrency market. I still remember that even a few years back cryptocurrencies were mainly for tech-savvy people. Today, people are wondering about investing in them with one common question – Which is the best cryptocurrency coin to invest?
There were also a few hundred cryptocurrencies, unlike today. Back then the only people that invested were people who loved the cryptocurrencies.
But right now the market demographic has changed quite a bit. Instead of hobbyists, serious investors are flooding the market with huge investments. Alongside this, the number of cryptocurrencies has also increased. Instead of a few hundred, the number has increased to 1270 to be precise.
As much as having a huge number of cryptocurrencies helps in diversifying your portfolio and gives you choice, it can be very confusing at times too.
“Which coin should I invest in?”
As a matter of fact, this is the most common question that I hear from newcomers willing to invest in cryptocurrencies.
So naturally, new investors are worried whether to invest in this coin or that. And I hope to answer this question once and for all, well at least for 2018.
There are also a lot of questions arising like – Should I Invest in Bitcoin in 2018?
- 1 Top Cryptocurrencies To Invest In 2018
- 1.1 Bitcoin (BTC)
- 1.2 Litecoin (LTC)
- 1.3 Ethereum (ETH)
- 1.4 Ethereum Classic (ETC)
- 1.5 Ripple (XRP)
- 1.6 Dash (DASH)
- 1.7 Zcash (ZEC)
- 1.8 NEM (XEM)
- 1.9 Monero (XMR)
- 1.10 NEO (NEO)
- 2 Final Words
Top Cryptocurrencies To Invest In 2018
In this section, I have compiled a list of top performing cryptocurrencies. But do keep in mind that this list is in no particular order.
First introduced way back in 2009, Bitcoin is the first implementation of a cryptocurrency network. Satoshi Nakamoto, an anonymous individual or group of individuals, mailed the Bitcoin whitepaper to prominent cryptographers and programmers in 2008. Thus Bitcoin came into being.
The paper titled “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” outlined all the details about Bitcoin and his plans with it. In January 2009, Satoshi mined the first block of Bitcoin, often called the Genesis Block for a reward of 50 coins. The mining of genesis block made the Bitcoin network active.
The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks. – Satoshi Nakamoto, Genesis Block Coinbase
Unlike traditional currencies which relies on governmental and corporate bodies to create currencies, Bitcoin is different. Bitcoin is an open-source decentralized peer to peer protocol which relies on its users to create more units. But by no means, it is the first.
Nick Szabo brainstormed the idea of a decentralized digital currency called bit gold. And Bitcoin can be viewed as a direct implementation of the bit gold system. Instead of a private ledger held by a body in a centralized system, Bitcoin’s ledger is public.
The public ledger is called blockchain.
Bitcoin is created as well as the transactions are verified using a proof of work algorithm and a process called mining. Miners verify transactions by solving a computational puzzle and add the transaction block to the blockchain.
There will only be 21 million Bitcoins in existence and out of these Satoshi owns 1 million. The Bitcoin Foundation currently develops and maintains the Bitcoin network.
What Makes Bitcoin Investable In 2018?
What makes Bitcoin a good option for investors is its huge popularity. Since its inception Bitcoin has always been a favorite among the hobbyists. But the recent surges in pricing interested veteran investors alike.
Currently, Bitcoin has a market cap of $217 billion with a per unit price of $13000. A price that is constantly increasing day by day. Out of the 21 million Bitcoins that will exist, 16 million is already circulating.
Right now the system generates exactly 12.5 Bitcoins per block. And this reward is expected to be decreased to 6.25 Bitcoins per block after 2020. The platform does this kind of halving every 4 years to control the supply of Bitcoins.
In my opinion, if you have more than $15000 lying around, then Bitcoin is a good choice for you.
Issues With Bitcoin
Bitcoin, being a cryptocurrency that was outlined way back in 2009, is much slower than other altcoins. And Bitcoin is also facing some scalability issues. That is why the Bitcoin Foundation incorporated “Segregated Witness“, or segwit in short, to solve some of the issues.
Mainstream media, many cryptocurrency enthusiasts and also environmentalists have been very vocal about power consumption due to Bitcoin. Bitcoin mining wastes a lot of power. It is somewhere near 23 terawatt hour, which can power the entire country of Ecuador.
Charlie Lee, a former Google employee created Litecoin in 2011. Litecoin is one of the first cryptocurrencies produced after Bitcoin. While it is still viewed as an altcoin it is not really entirely same as Bitcoin. Litecoin is also a peer to peer open source cryptocurrency project and it is under X11 license.
The main differences between Litecoin and Bitcoin are – Litecoin has a much lower block generation time of 2.5 minutes, lower than Bitcoin’s 10 minutes and it uses a different hashing algorithm.
Instead of Bitcoin’s SHA256 algorithm, Litecoin uses scrypt as proof of work algorithm.
The main reason for using scrypt is it is much harder to create FPGA and ASIC rigs for scrypt. Litecoin also has an increased number of coins that can circulate the market, 84 million to be exact. Just like Bitcoin, the rate of token generation per block is halved every 4 years.
The development team of Litecoin was extremely prompt to resolve issues regarding scalability. Litecoin was one of the first cryptocurrencies to adopt segregated witness.
It also supports lightning network which enables it to process transactions approximately four times faster than Bitcoin.
What Makes Litecoin A Good Cryptocurrency To Invest In?
Litecoin currently has a market capitalization of $11 billion and a total number of 53 million coins are currently circulating. Litecoin is also consistently showing good progress over the years and has never failed to amaze the crypto community.
Moreover, Litecoin has a relatively cheap per token cost of only 217 bucks. So big as well as small investors can invest in this cryptocurrency.
Issues With Litecoin
Litecoin foundation has been very active regarding improving the cryptocurrency. So there are no major setbacks with Litecoin. But as Litecoin also uses proof of work, it wastes a lot of resources.
Ethereum is the pioneer in the field of smart contracts and decentralized application development. It is the brainchild of teen coding whiz Vitalik Buterin. Vitalik’s father, a computer scientist by profession, interested him in Bitcoin and the concept of cryptocurrencies. And years later Vitalik himself created a cryptocurrency with huge support from cryptocurrency enthusiasts.
As per Vitalik the main reason behind Ethereum’s creation was the fact that Bitcoin does not have its own programming language.
So Vitalik wanted to have a cryptocurrency network that was way smarter than Bitcoin. Ethereum has its own virtual machine called EVM.
This virtual machine allows the creation of smart contracts and decentralized apps. These contracts are created using special programming languages like Solidity, Serpent, LLL, and Mutan.
This cryptocurrency platform is world’s largest distributed computing system. Ethereum is also the most used platform for creating ICO projects, with around 50% market share. This gives you an idea of Ethereum’s popularity.
Why Should You Invest In Ethereum?
Currently, each Ethereum token unit or ether, in short, is priced at $718. And Ethereum has a market cap of $69 billion. Although Ethereum has seen many ups and downs, the platform as a whole never has stopped progressing.
What makes Ethereum a great option to invest in is its popularity and prompt updates.
Issues With Ethereum
Just like Bitcoin and many other altcoins, Ethereum also uses proof of work to verify transactions and create new tokens. But Vitalik realized the threat this possess to the environment. So the development team made a decision to slowly change the platform to support proof of stake.
Last month they performed a hard fork to make the network ready for POS setup.
In my opinion, there are no real issues with Ethereum as the development team is always updating it to match new industry standards. But as always hard forking can cause discrepancies and may introduce some bugs or loopholes.
Ethereum Classic and Ethereum are mostly the same but different in some aspects. Back in May 2016, The DAO, a decentralized autonomous organization started a venture capital fund on Ethereum platform. They raised near about $168 million very quickly.
But there were some loopholes in the whole system. Some security experts and blockchain activists were prompt to point out the loopholes. But it was not resolved somehow. So, as a result, in June an anonymous user abused the system and withdrew 3.6 million ether.
This 3.6 million ether was valued at about $50 million at that time.
This split the whole Ethereum userbase in two. Some people wanted the Ethereum Foundation to perform a hard fork to restore the lost tokens.
But blockchain purists demanded that it shouldn’t be done as blockchain is considered to be immutable. Anyway, the original foundation performed a hard fork to restore the Ethers.
But a different entity decided to split away from Ethereum to support the purists’ cause. Thus Ethereum classic came into existence. Since then Ethereum classic underwent massive changes and forks to further detach it from the Ethereum.
Is Ethereum Classic Still Relevant In 2018 And Should You Invest In It?
Yes, of course, it is still relevant. Although it split away from Ethereum it still has the core Ethereum concepts. It has the ability to create smart contracts as well as decentralized applications. Ethereum classic is also updating their network to support proof of stake.
Right now it is priced at about 27 bucks per token with a market cap of $2.6 billion. Ethereum classic is a very promising project and till now it is showing great figures.
Ripple is a distributed open source internet protocol which supports real-time gross settlements, fast remittance, and currency exchanges. The developers created Ripple with peer to peer debt transfer. Ripple is structurally and fundamentally extremely different to other cryptocurrencies.
The Ripple network supports a wide variety of fiat currencies and even digital tokens. Ripple is practically hundred times faster than Bitcoin and many other cryptocurrencies. It can process transactions with its advanced consensus system within 4 seconds, whereas Bitcoin requires at least an hour.
But as per the Ripple Foundation, they are not here to compete with other cryptocurrencies. Instead, they are developing the next-gen transaction system to counter the traditional one, which is extremely slow.
Why Should You Invest In Ripple?
Many people don’t give enough attention to Ripple because the native currency XRP is priced very low. But they don’t realize that Ripple is not mineable like most other currencies. So the market already has all the XRP it will ever have. That is why it is valued at $2.11 although having an eighty-one billion USD market cap.
XRP is also the fourth most popular and most traded cryptocurrency. Faster transactions and extremely scalable platform are helping RippleNet to grow continuously.
Issues With Ripple
In my opinion, there are no real issues with Ripple. But some consider Ripple to be centralized since big companies are backing it. So if you consider yourself a blockchain purist then Ripple may not be the one for you.
- What Is Ripple (XRP)? Investing & Prediction.
- Best Ripple (XRP) Coin Wallets – 2017.
- [GUIDE] How To Buy Ripple (XRP) In India.
Dash is an open source peer to peer cryptocurrency that has been operating since early 2014. At first, it was called XCoin but in 2015 it was rebranded to DarkCoin. Finally, it was rebranded as Dash, which is a portmanteau of digital cash.
Dash aims to be a user-friendly cryptocurrency network which is self-funded and self-governed. As a matter of fact, it is the first decentralized autonomous organization that is Sybil proof.
Unlike Bitcoin which has a single tier network, dash operates on two tiers. The first tier consists of miners who mine new tokens.
While the second tier consists of Masternodes which perform various tasks. These tasks include governing the platform and performing critical tasks like InstaSend and PrivateSend.
Should You Invest In Dash In 2018?
Yes, you should. Dash is a promising cryptocurrency project which has an amazing business structure. It is extremely secure as well. The transactions are fast and the platform provides unique scalability features.
At the time of writing this Dash has a market cap of $7.8 billion and a per token price of $1002. As per Coinmarketcap, the 24-hour trade volume of Dash is somewhere near $174 million which is a proof of its ever-increasing popularity.
The brainchild of Zooko Wilcox-O’Hearn, Zcash is a further iteration of the zerocoin project. It is fundamentally the same as Bitcoin but it provides an extra layer of security and anonymity. But as per the development team, it’s not because they want to endorse illegal activity.
Zcash also allows users to disclose information regarding transactions and account balance selectively. This feature allows tax regulation authorities to perform audits.
What Makes Zcash Investable In 2018?
Zcash is a prominent project and it is ranked among the top 20 cryptocurrencies, right now. The privacy feature is a unique bonus.
Right now Zcash has a price of $486 with 2.9 million ZEC in circulation. ZEC has a market cap of $1.4 million and has a 24-hour trade volume of $137 million.
So yes you can invest in Zcash and it is still relevant in 2018.
Completely developed using Java, NEM is a peer to peer cryptocurrency with revolutionary features. Instead of generic proof of work algorithm that is used in most other cryptocurrencies, NEM uses proof of importance.
NEM also supports various new features like multisignature accounts, EigenTrust++ reputation system and encrypted messaging.
NEM runs on a commercial blockchain called MIJIN. MIJIN is currently being stress tested in financial institutions in Japan and worldwide. Japan has crossed the United States to become the land of cryptocurrency trading. So NEM has a bright future, to say the least.
Investing In NEM Should You Do It?
Right now NEM has a market cap of $8.2 billion and is ranked #8. XEM, the native token of NEM has a relatively low price of only $0.9. This makes a good choice for people who want invest small amounts.
Launched in 2014, Monero has become one of the most traded cryptocurrencies right now. It is built upon CryptoNote protocol and is mainly focused on providing a privacy-oriented decentralized and scalable cryptocurrency.
Why Should You Invest In Monero?
Monero currently has a market cap of $5.2 billion which is more than many popular cryptocurrencies like ETC and Zcash. And this market cap is constantly growing. Currently, XMR, the native token of Monero has a value of $335.26 which is great for new investors.
Problems With Monero
Monero is extremely privacy-focused. So a lot of information is encrypted to hide it even from the system itself. And this feature is highly abused.
Monero experienced a rapid growth in market capitalization back in 2016 when it was incorporated in AlphaBay. AlphaBay was a deep web marketplace that specialized in selling illegal and contraband items. It was tracked down and closed by law enforcement in July 2017.
Monero is also relatively easy to mine. It can be easily mined using consumer grade CPUs and GPUs. The development of Monero is against ASIC mining so they completely blocked it. The easy mining feature of XMR is abused heavily.
Often called the “Chinese Ethereum”, NEO is an open source peer to peer cryptocurrency that is fundamentally a bit similar to Ethereum. But that doesn’t mean NEO is a complete clone of Ethereum.
NEO incorporated Ethereum’s features like decentralized apps and smart contracts, but the development team also improved upon it heavily.
Unlike Ethereum, where smart contracts can only be generated using specialized programming languages. In NEO the smart contracts can be generated using popular languages like C, C++, Java etc.
The only plan of the NEO development team is to create a smart economy. And as per them, it can be achieved via combining digital assets, smart contracts, and digital identities. NEO is extremely upscalable and hypothetically it is also quantum computing safe. So yes, NEO is quite futuristic and can be seen as an extreme competitor of Ethereum.
Information About Investing In NEO
NEO is currently ranked at #13 at Coinmarketcap with a market cap of $4.4 billion. It currently costs about $68.35 with 65 million NEO in supply.
NEO is not mineable just like XRP. Instead, the platform has another cryptocurrency called GAS, which is mineable in a way. And the way you mine GAS is by holding NEO. Currently, this feature is only available at a popular exchange called Binance.
Problems With NEO
NEO has great potential and the development team is quite focused on their goal. But the only problem with NEO is that the development team lacks in the marketing department.
Unlike other cryptocurrencies, which can be bought without much fuss. Buying NEO can be a huge pain in the “you know what” sometimes. Currently, the only way to buy NEO is via exchanges like Bittrex, Binance etc.
The main goal of this post was to create awareness among new investors. For a newcomer in the field of cryptocurrency, it can be quite frustrating. I have encountered many people who have the money to invest in cryptocurrencies. But they are confused beyond believe and keep the money stacked in their bank accounts instead.
Some people are scared to invest in cryptocurrencies because of fake cryptocurrency gurus who encourage people to invest in shady new cryptocurrencies. In most of the cases these gurus have hidden agendas and the cryptocurrencies turn out to be blatant scams.
I hope I was able to clear some confusions regarding this. And I believe after reading this post you can make an educated decision.
This was our article on best cryptocurrency coin to invest in 2018.