The most well-known cryptocurrency is Bitcoin, but there are literally dozens of different choices when it comes to these digital currencies. However, Bitcoin always makes the news. In fact, cryptocurrency alternatives to Bitcoin known as “altcoins” are sometimes seen as a “also ran.”
Even while Bitcoin may have been the first significant cryptocurrency to enter the market when it initially appeared in 2009, several others have since grown to be quite successful, albeit not nearly as significant as the original.
The biggest cryptocurrencies are listed below based on the market capitalization, also known as market cap, which measures the total dollar worth of all coins in circulation.
Largest cryptocurrencies by market cap
1. Bitcoin (BTC)
Since it was the first cryptocurrency, Bitcoin is still the coin that most people think of when discussing virtual money. The currency made its debut in 2009, according to its enigmatic creator, Satoshi Nakamoto, and has since experienced a roller-coaster of a ride. The cryptocurrency didn’t enter the public mind, nevertheless, until 2017.
2. Ethereum (ETH)
The second term you’re most likely to remember in the cryptocurrency world is Ethereum, the moniker for the cryptocurrency platform. The money, ether, may be used in the system for a variety of tasks, but Ethereum’s smart contract feature contributes to its popularity.
3. Tether (USDT)
The price of Tether is fixed at $1 per coin. This is due to the fact that it is a stablecoin. In the case of Tether, the value of a given asset is linked to the value of the stablecoin. Tether frequently serves as a bridge when traders switch between cryptocurrencies. They stick with Tether rather than switching back to dollars. However, some individuals worry that Tether employs a short-term type of unsecured debt rather than being securely backed by dollars held in reserve.
4. USD Coin (USDC)
Similar to Tether, USD Coin is a stablecoin whose value is fixed to the US dollar and so should not change. The creators of the currency claim that it is backed by completely reserved assets or those with “equal fair worth,” and that these assets are kept in accounts with supervised U.S. institutions.
5. BNB (BNB)
One of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, Binance, has its own coin called BNB. Although Binance Coin was first designed as a token to pay for reduced transactions, it is now being used to make payments and buy a variety of goods and services.
6. Binance USD (BUSD)
Binance USD is a stablecoin backed by the dollar that the leading cryptocurrency exchange created in collaboration with Paxos. The New York Department of Financial Services oversees the 2019 launch of Binance USD. On top of the Ethereum blockchain, BUSD functions.
7. XRP (XRP)
XRP, formerly known as Ripple, was established in 2012 and provides a means of making payments in a variety of different fiat currencies. Cross-border transactions can benefit from ripple, which employs a trustless approach to make payments easier.
8. Dogecoin (DOGE)
Dogecoin gets its name from an online meme that features a Shiba Inu dog and was first made as a joke following the run-up in Bitcoin. Dogecoin features unrestricted issuance, in contrast to many other digital currencies that cap the amount of coins that may be produced. It may be used to transmit money or make payments.
9. Cardano (ADA)
The cryptocurrency framework that underpins the ada coin is called Cardano. Cardano, which was developed by the Ethereum co-founder, also makes use of smart contracts to facilitate identity management.
10. Polygon (MATIC)
A cryptocurrency called Polygon scales up Ethereum and focuses on being available to folks who are building digital apps. It was founded in 2017 and went by the moniker Matic until changing to Polygon in 2021.
11. Polkadot (DOT)
Polkadot, a digital currency that was introduced in May 2020, links the blockchain technology of several distinct cryptocurrencies. One of Polkadot’s creators is an Ethereum co-founder, and some industry observers think Polkadot intends to unseat Ethereum.
12. Dai (DAI)
Dai, a stablecoin that was launched in 2016, also links its value to the dollar. The cryptocurrency employs a system of smart contracts to maintain that valuation and is based on the Ethereum blockchain.
Those who are speculating in these digital assets should not invest more money than they can afford to lose because the cryptocurrency market is a Wild West (even if the U.S. government is planning to play a more active role in regulating the crypto industry). Cryptocurrency assets have seen severe volatility in 2022. Since the market’s record-breaking highs in November 2021, it has been falling. Additionally, it might be risky for beginners to trade because they may be up against highly experienced competitors.