What are Altcoins?
Alt-coins (alternative crypto currencies) have been every gambler and scammers dream come true since Bitcoin was first invented. The terminology being used for crypto currencies (aka altcoins) and bitcoin being the gold standard of crypto currencies, seems to confuse many people not familiar with the space.
Bitcoin is bitcoin. Altcoins are anything that isn’t bitcoin.
Confusing this even more is Ethereum.
Ethereum is a popular technology, ether is the token (crypto currency) people buy and exchange for goods and services. The Ethereum project includes a separate blockchain. Anyone can create a token on the blockchain and trade or sell it, the tokens can include smart contracts (digital contracts) setting rules for use of the tokens.
What are ICO’s?
ICO’s (initial coin offerings) commonly use Ethereum ERC20 tokens (similar to stocks in a company) they sell when starting a business. The business may create their own alt-coin or be working on disk space storage for computers, or creating an exchange to trade alt-coins. Regardless of the business an ICO is the launching of business. Investors in the business can buy the coin (or token) offered by this new business with their current holdings in bitcoins or altcoins. The company is funded by rich crypto currency holders, speculative investors, gamblers and occasionally morons.
Stock trading and ICO’s are similar in the sense that people are investing using money and “digital money,” ICO’s are however the wild west of unregulated investment capital currently. This is the reason for all of the media hype and people claiming “crypto currency is a scam.” ICO’s can and most likely are a scam, even the “legit” businesses that start with crypto capital, with the best intentions to create a product, could fail like 90% of businesses do.
We may not have the cheap-alt’s news that many crypto traders like to see, or the buzzwords of a new crypto going to the moon, however the chances of 90% of altcoins lasting 5 years at their valuations is almost impossible. To clarify:
The chances of 90% of altcoins, lasting 5 years at their valuations, is almost impossible.
Anyone can create an ERC20 token and anyone can pretend they are starting a company to get investment money. Especially when ICO’s are the easiest way to get capital, there will be a flood of scammers and bad business people in this space. There are a FEW really good technologies being developed, with very good teams that seem worthy of peoples time, attention and possibly their money. We aren’t recommending anybody interested in crypto currency look to acquire anything other than bitcoin because the properties of these “other” crypto’s has to always be questioned and monitored.
The few technologies and teams that stand out above all the crypto currency noise will be covered here. For anyone wanting crypto trading advice, go to YouTube and watch some kid in his bedroom market a new token or coin. The marketing companies are now involved with ICO’s and alt-coin launches so believing these technologies or companies will ever launch or create a product of value is completely up to the consumer of those tokens.
For a better understanding of what 100 different altcoins (and tokens do), we’ve “borrowed” this from u/redddiablo
|Ethereum||ETH||Programmable contracts and money|
|Bitcoin Cash||BCH||Bitcoin clone|
|Ripple||XRP||Enterprise payment settlement network|
|Dash||DASH||Privacy-focused Bitcoin clone|
|NEM||XEM||Batteries-included digital assets|
|Monero||XMR||Private digital cash|
|Ethereum Classic||ETC||Ethereum clone|
|Qtum||QTUM||Ethereum contracts on Bitcoin|
|OmiseGO||OMG||Banking, remittance, and exchange|
|Zcash||ZEC||Private digital cash|
|BitConnect||BCC||Madoff-like investment fund|
|Cardano||ADA||Layered currency and contracts|
|Tether||USDT||Price = 1 USD|
|Stellar Lumens||XLM||Digital IOUs|
|EOS||EOS||Decentralized applications on WebAssembly|
|Waves||WAVES||Decentralized exchange and crowdfunding|
|Stratis||STRAT||Decentralized applications in C#|
|Steem||STEEM||Reddit with money voting|
|Ardor||ARDR||Blockchain for spawning blockchains|
|Binance Coin||BNB||Pay Binance exchange fees|
|Augur||REP||Decentralized prediction market|
|Populous||PPT||Invoice trading futures|
|Decred||DCR||Bitcoin with alternative governance|
|TenX||PAY||Cryptocurrency credit card|
|MaidSafeCoin||MAID||Rent disk space|
|Golem||GNT||Rent other people’s computers|
|PIVX||PIVX||Inflationary Dash clone|
|Gas||GAS||Pay fees on Neo|
|Factom||FCT||Decentralized record keeping|
|Basic Attention||BAT||Decentralized ad network|
|Kyber Network||KNC||Decentralized exchange|
|Dogecoin||DOGE||Serious meme bitcoin clone|
|DigixDAO||DGD||Organisation manages tokenized gold|
|Bytom||BTM||Physical assets as tokens|
|Byteball Bytes||GBYTE||Decentralized database and currency|
|GameCredits||GAME||Video game currency|
|Metaverse ETP||ETP||Chinese Ethereum plus identity|
|GXShares||GXS||Decentralized Chinese Equifax|
|Siacoin||SC||Rent disk space|
|Status||SNT||Decentralized application browser|
|Lykke||LKK||Digital asset exchange|
|Civic||CVC||Identity and Authentication App|
|Metal||MTL||Payments with rewards program|
|Iconomi||ICN||Digital asset investment funds|
|Aeternity||AE||Decentralized apps (prototype)|
|Bancor||BNT||Token Index Funds|
|Ripio Credit||RCN||Co-signed Cryptocurrency Loans|
|Gnosis||GNO||Decentralized prediction market|
|VeChain||VEN||Supply chain item IDs|
|Particl||PART||Privacy marketplace and chat|
|KuCoin Shares||KCS||Profit-sharing exchange fees|
|Bitquence||BQX||Mint for cryptocurrency investments|
|ChainLink||LINK||External data for contracts|
|Power Ledger||POWR||Airbnb for electricity|
|Nxt||NXT||Cryptocurrency and marketplace|
|Monaco||MCO||Cryptocurrency credit card|
|MCAP||MCAP||Mining investment fund|
|Storj||STORJ||Rent disk space|
|ZenCash||ZEN||Privacy-focused Bitcoin clone|
|Neblio||NEBL||Decentralized application platform|
|Streamr DATAcoin||DATA||Real-time data marketplace|
|ZCoin||XZC||Private digital cash|
|NAV Coin||NAV||Bitcoin with private transactions|
|Open Trading||OTN||Decentralized exchange|
|SmartCash||SMART||Zcoin clone with rewards|
Bitcoin that rewards savers