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  1. The biggest name in the cryptocurrency game is Bitcoin, so much so that in many cases the word “bitcoin” has become synonymous for the entire industry. However, the cryptocurrency ecosystem is an incredibly interesting industry which has been built on an innovative codebase known as the Blockchain. We won’t get into the weeds with this code base other than to note that it is what makes cryptocurrencies virtually impervious to hacking, promises zero server downtime and ensures you can remain anonymous while exercising full control over your funds. Four Noteworthy Cryptocurrencies With more than 1000 cryptocurrencies on the market we have simplified matters by focusing on 5 intriguing non-Bitcoin cryptocurrencies. Join us as we delve into what makes them both unique and potentially the next big breakout coin. ✓Ethereum (ETH) – Smart Contracts Ethereum is a well-known name in cryptocurrency circles, mostly for being the Pepsi to Bitcoin’s Coca Cola. What is less commonly known about Ethereum is where it secures its value proposition? Unlike Bitcoin which sees its value-driven by public awareness and scarcity, Ethereum generates its value from how useful it is to its users. Ethereum allows its users to perform credible transactions with buyers and sellers via smart contracts. These smart contracts use secure code to ensure the transactions in question are secure and will be honoured by both parties. Ethereum stands to see rapid growth once corporations become familiar with the benefits and features of doing business on the blockchain. The cryptocurrency has positioned itself as the one to work with once smart contract adoption hits the mainstream. ✓Litecoin (LTC) – Fastest Transactions There is very little to differentiate Litecoin from Bitcoin when looking at its basic setup. This is not unexpected given that Litecoin is considered a ‘hard fork’ of BTC, having been built using the same basic premise. Where Litecoin does shine however is in the cryptocurrency evangelism and technology adoption. Created by ex-Google engineer and creator of Coinbase, Charlie Lee, the cryptocurrency showcases the latest in blockchain development using its own algorithm for mining and requiring different hardware to other mining solutions. It is this constant dedication to speed, data security and enhancement that allows Litecoin to be the fastest processing coin on the market, showing up to 75% faster transaction speeds than Bitcoin. Charlie Lee is also an outspoken supporter of cryptocurrency adoption and works to educate the public and corporations of its benefits through the non-profit Litecoin Foundation. ✓Ripple (XRP) – Banking Pioneers Where most cryptocurrencies see themselves as leather jacket-wearing rebels, Ripple has taken a more mature approach to growing its user base. The bulk of its growth was achieved by partnering with more than 300 existing financial institutions. Their financial infrastructure is called Ripplenet, and by partnering with the likes of American Express, Bank of America, HSBC, Siam Bank, Nium, Moneygram and many others they have access to a limitless user base that literally crisscrosses the entire planet. These users are also the recipients of the faster transactions and lower costs offered by a virtual coin network. Another unique feature of Ripple is that while the cryptocurrency does use a ledger system like Bitcoin and its peers the coinage does not require traditional mining to be performed to acquire it making it cryptocurrency that does not come with massive power bills associated with crypto-mining. ✓Dash (DASH) – Traceless Transactions Dash lives up its name by being a virtual currency which offers lighting fast transaction speeds of 1 second, across more than 4300 global merchants. For those looking to interact with Dash as an investment item, it can be traded on more than 260 exchanges around the world. While all blockchain-based cryptocurrencies offer users the safety net of anonymity, Dash has taken that promise one step further. Rather than keep a transaction history – which would allow a third party to track your digital movements - Dash does not publish your transaction data to the blockchain. This added layer of security is proving popular with users, which sees them process more than 20,000 transactions daily. This transaction limit could see a sharp increase in the near future as Dash readies to launch the new DashPay Wallet for both Apple iOS and Android. Honourable Mentions During our journey through the weird and wonderful world of altcoins, there were several that caught our attention but did not seem poised to become big names in the industry. That is not to say that they do not serve a niche audience, check out our runners up to see if any of these meet your needs. USD Coin – While not a decentralised cryptocurrency in the true sense this is a virtual coin based on the value of the US Dollar. It could very well the way to transact on a daily basis should the fiat banking world do away with paper money. Dentacoin – One of the many niche coins which use Ethereum as its base, Dentacoin is the first virtual currency targeting the dental profession. With the coin, users can pay for care, earn rewards and even trade the coin on a participating exchange. Sexcoin – Where there is money there is sex, as the internet has proven over and over again. Established in 2013 Sexcoin aims to become to the go-to virtual coin for all your adult needs, everything from hiring a dancer to tipping your favourite camgirl. Let us know if you have any interesting altcoins that you feel have the potential to blow up in the future.
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