Best Altcoins to Invest in 2022
We’re all familiar with the big names in crypto like Bitcoin and Ethereum, but there are many other competitors out there whose development teams are working hard to rise above the noise and claim a seat on the leaderboards by their cryptocurrency forefathers.
In this article, we’ll be briefly covering a handful of these up-and-coming altcoins that are worth considering an investment in, with each looking to bring their own unique solutions and focuses to the cryptocurrency space in the new year and beyond.
Market Cap (at time of writing): $25,041,555,376.11
What is it? A speedy, low-fee Proof-of-Stake (PoS) model Ethereum competitor capable of facilitating up to 4,500 transactions per second that’s focused on scalability and used as a platform for decentralized applications (DApps), smart contracts, and custom blockchain networks.
What makes it stand out? In a unique decision to help solve the “blockchain trilemma” of simultaneously maintaining security, scalability, and decentralization, Avalanche’s network utilizes three interoperable (fully cross-interactive) blockchains: the X-Chain, C-Chain, and P-Chain. Each serves their own purpose and work together to help keep the network and all its components running smoothly. It even supports the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), meaning it’s fully compatible with everything Ethereum can do.
Market Cap (at time of writing): $26,493,780,710.39
What is it? A sophisticated, yet highly thought-out and future-proof open-source sharded multichain protocol that securely connects a large network of specialized blockchains (called parachains and parathreads), allowing for cross-chain transfers of any data or asset type (not just tokens), so that blockchains can be interoperable with each other.
What makes it stand out? Founded by the Web3 Foundation, Polkadot aims to provide the infrastructure for the next iteration of the Internet (known as Web3), effectively creating a decentralized internet of various blockchains. Because it’s a sharded multichain network, Polkadot can process multiple transactions on several chains in parallel, which is a major factor in increasing its scalability. Developers can utilize their parachains for virtually any kind of blockchain-powered applications from Decentralized Finance (DeFi), to NFTs, to gaming, to Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs), and more. The network also has its own governance system wherein DOT token holders can have a say in how it should be run.
Market Cap (at time of writing): $2,007,070,077.89
What is it? A unique Proof-of-Work (PoW) blockchain and smart contract platform that utilizes a novel consensus mechanism called Chainweb, essentially parallelizing the foundation of a Bitcoin mining chain across multiple chains to reach up to 8,000 transactions per second and remedying Bitcoin’s underlying issues with scalability. Additionally, it uses a new upgradable smart contract language called Pact that aims to be an improvement over Ethereum’s Solidity language.
What makes it stand out? Kadena’s unique Chainweb architecture currently has 20 blockchains, all working together to improve the scalability and speed of the network, while closely adhering to Satoshi Nakamoto’s original vision for Bitcoin. The project also boasts a team of key crypto players including famed cryptographer Dr. Stuart Haber who co-invented blockchain and had been heavily cited by Nakamoto in his 2008 Bitcoin whitepaper, as well as Stuart Popejoy, who led JPMorgan’s Emerging Blockchain group to help them develop their own internal crypto coin, JPM Coin.
Market Cap (at time of writing): $30,321,837,910.17
What is it? An open-source stablecoin network controlled by its stakeholders featuring numerous stablecoins each pegged to the value of different world currencies to make sending and receiving global payments fast and affordable. As with other blockchains, its platform has rich smart contracts to facilitate the creation of all kinds of DApps, primarily in the DeFi sector.
What makes it stand out? Terra aims to enable a truly democratic economy and is unique in that its focus is on making global payments accessible, affordable, and faster than ever while limiting the volatility that comes with most cryptos. The project is bolstered by the Terra Alliance, a global group of platforms and businesses that are proponents of Terra’s adoption worldwide. Terra’s staking token LUNA helps maintain the price of each foreign stablecoin and is rewarded to stakeholders over time as more people use them. Stakeholders also have governance over the network, meaning they can propose, amend, and vote on various propositions including minting new world currency stablecoins.
Market Cap (at time of writing): $10,028,546,260.92
What is it? Algorand is a decentralized blockchain-powered smart contract platform and cryptocurrency utilizing a Pure Proof-of-Stake (PPoS) model with the goal of tackling the “blockchain trilemma” of offering scalability, decentralization, and security by focusing on fast transactions and improved overall efficiency to make global transactions secure, quick, and affordable.
What makes it stand out? Algorand’s speedy network can process more than 1,000 transactions per second and complete them in less than five. Other than the project’s focus on efficiency and affordability, Algorand’s novel PPoS consensus mechanism ensures users are chosen to propose blocks and vote on block proposals secretly and completely at random, with each user’s influence on the choice of a new block being proportional to their number of held ALGO tokens, thus making it fair for all stakeholders to receive rewards. Its use cases span a variety of sectors from DeFi, to environmental causes, to infrastructure, to stablecoins, and more.
Market Cap (at time of writing): $3,164,953,649.73
What is it? Aave is an open-source DeFi protocol that allows users to lend, borrow, and earn interest on various cryptocurrencies. Unlike the other projects on this list, Aave doesn’t have its own blockchain. Instead, it runs off of the Ethereum network and its native utility/governance token AAVE is an ERC-20 token. Participants act as depositors or borrowers, with depositors providing liquidity to the market, thereby earning passive income from their staked tokens.
What makes it stand out? Aave is a unique DeFi platform that’s helped pioneer the lending and borrowing of crypto. Having seen its fair share of success in the last year, it’s accumulated over $26,000,000,000 and counting in its liquidity protocol since launch. Another interesting main offering of theirs are flash loans, near-instantaneous loans that can be settled in seconds on the blockchain with no upfront collateral, often used by advanced traders to make a quick profit from arbitrage opportunities.
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