Bitcoin (BTC) is a cryptocurrency which is regarded as the world’s first decentralized digital currency. It was created by a pseudonymous person or persons named Satoshi Nakamoto in 2009 and has since gone on to become the world’s most popular cryptocurrency by market cap.
Ethereum (ETH) is an open-source distributed blockchain that has smart contract functionality. It operates as a decentralized virtual machine which can execute scripts and be used to transfer ether between different nodes. Although ether is the name of the token which is sent on the Ethereum blockchain, many people also refer to it as Ethereum.
Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is a cryptocurrency which was created on August 1st 2017 as a hard fork of Bitcoin. Although technically very similar to BTC, BCH uses a larger 8MB block size which allows each block to hold more transactions
Ripple (XRP) is a cryptocurrency designed for facilitating real-time global payments. Released in 2012, it uses the open source Ripple Transaction Protocol and enables anyone to send money anywhere in the world at low cost and with no chargebacks.
Litecoin (LTC) is one of the oldest cryptocurrencies in existence after BTC, launched in October 2011. LTC is a fork of BTC so shares many of the same characteristics but benefits from shorter block generation times of around 2.5 minutes, allowing transactions to clear faster.
Dash was created in January 2014. At the time, it was called Darkcoin before later rebranding as Dash, a portmanteau of Digital Cash. Dash uses a blockchain which is similar to BTC but which has a number of advanced features such as the ability to send instant and private transactions.
NEM (XEM) was launched in March 2015. It utilizes blockchain technology and was written in Java. NEM differs from BTC in a number of key areas. For example, it boasts extremely fast block times of 1 minute and has been designed to have as wide a distribution model as possible.
Monero (XMR) is the world’s best-known anonymous digital currency. Its security, privacy and untraceability are its main features. Although there are many other cryptocurrencies that purport to be anonymous, Monero is the most popular and the largest by market cap.
IOTA (IOT or MIOTA) is a cryptocurrency token that is named after the Internet of Things, the internet-enabled network of smart devices that is set to grow exponentially in the coming decades. IOTA launched via an ICO in 2015, having been designed as a means of facilitating machine-to-machine transactions.
Ethereum Classic (ETC)
Ethereum Classic (ETC) is a cryptocurrency and distributed computing platform which uses a token known as classic ether. Ethereum Classic was born as a spin-off of Ethereum following a large-scale theft of ether as a consequence of The DAO, a decentralized organization, being hacked in 2016.
NEO is a Chinese cryptocurrency that was originally known as AntShares before undergoing a rebranding exercise in 2017 and emerging as NEO. It’s often been described as the Ethereum of China because NEO operates in a similar manner, allowing smart contracts to be delivered via its blockchain.
OmiseGO (OMG) is a token-based digital currency backed by the Plasma decentralized exchange and a digital wallet provided by Omise. It’s designed to facilitate payments for goods and services on the web to and to enable the cross-border transfer of assets.
Lisk (LSK) is a blockchain platform and supporting cryptocurrency that was created as a fork of Crypti in 2016. In August 2017, the value of Lisk jumped dramatically after a roadmap was published revealing a number of major developments that were in the pipeline.
Qtum is a digital currency whose unique feature is that it can execute a smart contract as part of an unspent transaction. It’s designed for powering decentralized mobile apps as well as integrating with other blockchains.
Zcash (ZEC) is a cryptocurrency whose main feature is its anonymity. It uses blockchain technology which keeps certain elements of each transaction private such as the identity of the sender, recipient and amount sent. Users have the ability to determine how much privacy they wish to assign to each Zcash transaction they make.
Steem is a blockchain-powered social media platform that rewards creators for their content. Users earn Steem every time they share content that other users enjoy. Steem was conceived as a means of getting around the problem of artists not getting paid for their work.
BitShares (BTS) is a decentralized exchange and trading platform combined with the BitShares cryptocurrency which powers the exchange. It is the brainchild of Dan Lorimer who is a well-known figure in the crypto community and who is also responsible for EOS.
EOS (EOS )
EOS is a blockchain technology developed by Dan Larimer. EOS launched a year-long token sale in April 2017 which swiftly raised over $200 million. The concept behind EOS is one inspired by Ethereum and in fact EOS has been billed as a direct competitor to Ethereum.
Stellar Lumens (XLM)
Stellar Lumens (XLM) is a crypto platform that’s designed to enable the fast and secure transfer of money at low cost. It is intended for individuals as well as for enterprise users such as banks.
Cardano is a blockchain developed by the IOHK firm. The team is led by former Ethereum veteran Charles Hoskinson and aims to be the next generation blockchain project. Cardano is slated to become a full-fledged smart contract platform with a library of protocols that developers can use to build decentralized apps.
TRON is a blockchain based decentralized protocol that aims to construct a worldwide free content entertainment system while utilizing blockchain and distributed storage technology. The protocol allows users to publish, store, and own data, while the decentralized system manages subscriptions, distribution and the push of content.
VeChain (VEN) is an enterprise-focused dApp and ICO platform with its own token that connects blockchain technology with real-world infrastructure such as IoT.
Bitcoin Gold (BTG)
Bitcoin Gold is the cryptocurrency that split of the Bitcoin’s blockchain in a hard fork on October 24 at approximately 2.00am GMT. As a result, Bitcoin (BTC) holders were credited the equivalent amount of Bitcoin Gold (BTG) on a 1:1 basis
Verge (XVG) is a decentralized currency that enables users to trade with enhanced privacy by using multiple anonymity-centric networks. Its payment verification technology allows transactions to be completed in around 5 seconds. To improve security and provide an equal distribution of XVG, it utilizes multi-algorithm mining support.
Bytecoin (BCN) is a decentralized cryptocurrency which offers fast transactions. Launched in 2012, Bytecoin is designed to be untraceable and has the added lure of facilitating international payments without fees. It takes around two minutes on average for a Bytecoin transaction to confirm.
Siacoin (SC) is a decentralized private cloud service that delivers storage on the blockchain. Sia, as it is more commonly known, takes digital files, splits them into pieces and then encrypts and distributes them. Because the file-holders own their own keys, no third parties can access their data or control their files.
ICON (ICX) is an interconnecting blockchain network that connects independent blockchains without additional intermediaries and ICON provides unique blockchain solutions to banks, hospitals, and universities.
Ontology is a blockchain/distributed ledger network, which combines distributed identity verification, data exchange, data collaboration, procedure protocols, communities, attestation, and various industry-specific modules.
Zilliqa is a new blockchain platform that is designed to scale in an open, permission-less distributed network securely. Due to sharding, Zilliqa is very scalable.
Decred is a cryptocurrency whose name is a portmanteau of “decentralized credit”. It’s a currency which shares many similarities with Bitcoin and which uses a hybrid proof of work and proof of stake consensus system.