25 Cryptocurrencies You Should Know About

Bitcoin (BTC) 2009
  • The Bitcoin domain, bitcoin.org, was registered on 18 August 2008, and the concept was first explained in a white paper published on 31 October 2008.
  • The first Bitcoin wasn’t created until 3 January 2009; this is when the first Bitcoin block, known as the Genesis block, was mined.
  • Its creator is Satoshi Nakamoto. Nobody knows who Satoshi is, leading many people to claim to be Satoshi.
  • Bitcoin is the largest and most trusted crypto, with coins worth $795 Billion in supply.
Ethereum (ETH) 2013
  • Ethereum was conceived in 2013 by programmer Vitalik Buterin. The first Ethereum coins, called Ether, were mined on 30 July 2015.
  • Ethereum is more than a public ledger; it is a software application that allows developers to build decentralized applications (DApps) on top of it.
  • Ethereum was the first blockchain to deploy smart contracts, which are pieces of software that enable developers to deploy apps with functions such as trading, investing, lending, and borrowing.
  • Ethereum is expecting an upgrade in 2022 to Ethereum 2.0, which will enable it to be the best performing blockchain in terms of speed, costs, and energy efficiency.
Tether (USDT) 2014
  • Tether was founded by Brock Pierce, Reeve Collins, and Craig Sellars in July 2014.
  • The first tokens were released on 6 October 2014 on the Bitcoin blockchain. It was renamed Tether on 20 November 2014 and now also issues coins on the Ethereum, EOS, Tron, Algorand, SLP, and OMG blockchains.
  • Tether is a stablecoin and its price is pegged to real-world assets, such as the US dollar. Tether claims one coin is backed by either cash in the bank or other assets, such as stocks and bonds, keeping the value of Tether stable, unlike most cryptocurrencies which are volatile. One Tether coin is roughly equivalent to one US dollar.
Binance Coin (BNB) 2017
  • Binance Coin (BNB) Binance coin was created in July 2017 and was initially hosted on the Ethereum blockchain.
  • The Binance blockchain, called Binance Chain, was launched in 2019 along with its own native BNB token. The primary function of BNB coin is trading and paying fees on the Binance cryptocurrency exchange.
  • BNB is compatible with two blockchains: Binance Chain and Binance Smart Chain (BSC).
  • Every three months, Binance uses 20% of its profits to repurchase and permanently destroy Binance coins, thereby removing from circulation. This ensures Binance tokens in circulation will never cross the 200 million mark.
USD Coin (USDC) 2018
  • USDC went live in September 2018 through a collaboration between a consortium called Centre and the Coinbase crypto exchange.
  • It’s a stablecoin that runs on Ethereum and is pegged to the US dollar. One USDC is redeemable for one US dollar for no fees.
  • You can buy USDC via a crypto exchange and hold it in any Ethereum compatible wallet.
  • The wire transfer service Visa accepts the use of USDC to settle transactions.
Cardano (ADA) 2017
  • The Cardano blockchain was launched by Charles Hoskinson, a co-founder of Ethereum, in 2017.
  • Its coin is called ADA, in honor of Ada Lovelace, the 19th-century English mathematician who is considered the first computer programmer.
  • The total supply of ADA is capped at 45 billion coins.
  • Cardano is highly energy-efficient, using less than 0.01% of the energy used by Bitcoin.
Solana (SOL) 2020
  • Solana was launched in February 2020 by Anatoly Yakovenko and other co-founders.
  • Solana is an open-source blockchain with smart contract functionality, enabling it to host decentralized applications (DApps) that offer services and products in finance, gaming, and many others.
  • Its SOL token is used to pay transaction fees and verify transactions on the blockchain. Token holders also have the right to vote in future system upgrades.
  • Solana is one of the fastest blockchains in the world, and it is also aiming for carbon neutrality.
XRP 2012
  • XRP is the native token of the Ripple blockchain, which launched in 2012.
  • XRP facilitates quick conversion between different currencies using the Ripple blockchain. For example, you can send XRP to a recipient who requires payment in Bitcoin. Ripple converts the XRP, or indeed any other currency including dollars, into Bitcoin and sends it to the recipient.
  • Ripple is also a global payments network that competes with SWIFT. Major banks and financial service providers are amongst its customers.
Terra (LUNA) 2019
  • Terra blockchain was founded by Daniel Shin and Do Kwon of Korean firm Terraform Labs. Its LUNA coin launched in July 2019.
  • Terra is a blockchain that hosts and issues stablecoins secured by smart-contract algorithms, not US dollars.
  • Luna is used to manage the blockchain by issuing stablecoins, paying transaction fees, and casting votes in the blockchain’s governance.
Dogecoin (DOGE) 2013
  • Dogecoin was founded in 2013 by Jackson Palmer and Billy Markus as a joke. They were online friends working at major tech companies who wanted to highlight the absurdity of cryptocurrency mania. To their surprise, it gained a massive following and is now one of the largest cryptos out there.
  • It was the first “memecoin,” and its symbol is the Shiba Inu dog.
  • Dogecoin is intentionally abundant. Ten thousand new coins are mined every minute, and there is no maximum supply.
  • Tesla accepts it for some transactions. Cinema chain AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (AMC) also accepts Dogecoin for digital gift card purchases.
Polkadot (DOT) 2020
  • Polkadot was launched on 26 May 2020 by Gavin Wood and others.
  • The Polkadot coin DOT is used as a governance token, which allows holders to vote on the management of the Polkadot blockchain.
  • It is also used for staking, which is how the Polkadot blockchain verifies transactions and issues new DOT tokens.
  • Polkadot is also a protocol that connects two different blockchains and enables them to trade and share data (Bitcoin and Ethereum, for example).
Avalanche (AVAX) 2020
  • Avalanche was launched in 2020 by Ava Labs, which was founded by Cornell University professor Emin Gün Sirer and others.
  • It is a platform for smart contracts, decentralized applications (DApps), and blockchain subnets (blockchain within a blockchain).
  • The native coin of Avalanche is AVAX, which has a total supply limit of 720 million tokens. Three hundred and sixty million tokens were created at launch.
  • AVAX is used for payments, staking, and trading.
Binance USD 2019
  • The BUSD stablecoin was founded by Paxos and Binance in 2019.
  • It is a stablecoin backed by the US dollar. One unit of BUSD is equivalent to one US dollar. Paxos holds an amount of US dollars equal to the total supply of BUSD.
  • The token exists on Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain, and Binance Chain blockchains. Holders can swap their tokens between the blockchains on the Binance exchange (when making withdrawals) or through Binance Bridge.
Shiba Inu (SHIB) 2020
  • Shiba Inu token was created in August 2020 by an anonymous developer called Ryoshi. It was meant to be an Ethereum compatible alternative to Dogecoin.
  • Just like DOGE, SHIB’s supply is abundant. The initial circulating supply is one quadrillion coins.
  • Shiba Inu is the name of a Japanese dog breed, the same breed depicted in Dogecoin’s symbol.
  • Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin donated more than 50 trillion SHIB (worth over $1 billion) to the India COVID-Crypto Relief Fund On 13 May 2021.
Polygon (MATIC) 2019
  • The Polygon network was co-founded by blockchain developers Sandeep Nailwal, Jaynti Kanani, and business consultant Anurag Arjun in 2019.
  • It is a layer 2 Ethereum off-chain solution, meaning that it doesn’t process transactions directly on the blockchain to help speed things up. It works by bridging to Ethereum. It is much faster and cheaper than Ethereum.
  • MATIC is the Polygon network’s native cryptocurrency used for fees, staking, and trading.
  • The total supply of MATIC coins is limited to 10 billion.
TerraUSD (UST) 2020
  • TerraUSD launched in September 2020 through a partnership between the Terra network and Bittrex Global.
  • It is a stablecoin running on Ethereum with a value of $1.00.
  • However, it is not backed by US dollars. Instead, its coin (UST) is created by burning (destroying) $1.00 worth of TerraUSD’s reserve asset, the LUNA token.
Crypto.com Coin (CRO) 2016
  • Crypto.com was launched in June 2016 by Kris Marszalek and three others founding members. Its original token was MCO (Monaco coin) but now uses CRO coin as the native token of the Crypto.com Chain.
  • The Crypto.com Chain enables businesses to receive crypto as a form of payment. The payments are instantly effected in CRO or stablecoins or traditional fiat currencies such as dollars.
  • The Crypto.com app supports more than 80 crypto assets and several fiat currencies, allowing users to buy, sell, store, send, and track crypto assets.
Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC) 2019
  • Crypto asset platforms Bitgo, Kyber, and Ren launched Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC) in 2019.
  • WBTC is an ERC-20 token that integrates Bitcoin (BTC) in the Ethereum blockchain, allowing Bitcoin to be stored in Ethereum wallets and be used in DApps and smart contracts.
  • 1 Bitcoin is worth 1 Wrapped Bitcoin.
Cosmos (ATOM) 2014
  • Developers Jae Kwon and Ethan Buchman co-founded the Cosmos network in 2014 and released it in 2019.
  • Cosmos is an ecosystem of networks that can share data and tokens with no central party facilitating the activity.
  • Each independent blockchain within Cosmos (called a “zone”) is tethered to the Cosmos Hub, which maintains a record of the state of each zone and vice versa.
  • The native token of Cosmos is ATOM.
Dai (DAI) 2017
  • Dai (DAI) is a decentralized stablecoin that launched in December 2017.
  • It runs on Ethereum and attempts to maintain a value of $1.00.
  • DAI isn’t backed by US dollars in a bank account. Instead, it’s backed by collateral on the Maker platform, a smart contract that governs DAI.
  • DAI is used to lend and borrow crypto assets without an intermediary.
Litecoin (LTC) 2011
  • A former Google engineer named Charlie Lee founded Litecoin in October 2011.
  • Litecoin is nearly identical to Bitcoin, as it is based on bitcoin’s source code. However, it mines blocks at least four times faster than Bitcoin.
  • Transactions are faster and cheaper than the Bitcoin network, although generally smaller in size.
  • The number of Litecoins in circulation has been limited to 84 million Litecoins
Chainlink (LINK) 2017
  • Sergey Nazarov and Steve Ellis created Chainlink in 2017 and launched it on the Ethereum blockchain in 2019.
  • It is a decentralized oracle network, which enables smart contracts on Ethereum to securely process data from external sources, APIs, and payment systems.
  • LINK is the blockchain’s token. LINK is used to pay for services on the network and incentivize the network members to provide accurate data and accurately verify transactions.
NEAR Protocol (NEAR) 2020
  • Former Google engineer Illia Polosukhin and Microsoft developer Alexander Skidanov launched NEAR in April 2020 as an alternative to Ethereum.
  • The network can process 100,000 transactions per second. Transactions are verified and accepted instantaneously.
  • NEAR gives users wallets with human-readable domain names that do not rely on third-party providers such as Ethereum Name Service.
  • Every wallet’s private keys are managed through two-factor authentication, making it easy to manage.
Uniswap (UNI) 2018
  • Uniswap was created in 2018 by Hayden Adams, a former Siemens engineer. It launched its UNI token in September 2020.
  • Uniswap is an automated decentralized crypto exchange (DEX) that runs on the Ethereum blockchain. It enables traders to securely exchange different Ethereum tokens through smart contracts without relying on a centralized exchange such as Coinbase or Binance.
  • On Uniswap, traders can swap tokens directly with one another.
Algorand (ALGO) 2017
  • Algorand was founded in 2017 by MIT Professor Silvio Micali. He launched its Algo token in 2019 with a maximum supply of 10 billion Algo.
  • Like Ethereum, it is designed to provide infrastructure for building crypto networks, decentralized apps (DApps), and crypto tokens.
  • It is a relatively fast, low-cost, carbon-negative blockchain with smart contract capabilities.

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