A cryptocurrency is a digital asset that can be used as a medium of exchange.
If you own some, your ownership record will be securely stored on a ledger, a computerized database that uses cryptography to secure transactions.
Cryptography is also used to verify coin transfer ownership and to control the creation of extra coins. Unlike physical currencies, cryptocurrency is not issued by central authorities. As a result, the transactions are usually anonymous and fall into the decentralized segment.
There are thousands of cryptocurrencies; for a full list, check CoinMarketCap.
Here are some of the popular cryptocurrencies:
- Bitcoin, also known as BTC
- Ethereum (ETH)
- Ripple (XRP)
- Litecoin (LTC)
- Cardano (ADA)
- Tether (USDT)
- Stellar (XLM)
As you might have guessed, Bitcoin (BTC) is the leader of the pack, and it was the first cryptocurrency that was launched in 2009.
As of this writing, there are 2,000 + cryptocurrency tokens in existence. However, a large chunk of the market share is shared between the top 20 coins by circulation/market cap.
Also Read: How to buy Bitcoin (BTC)
What are Altcoins
Any coin/token other than bitcoin is termed an alternative coin or simply an altcoin. On the crypto markets/exchanges, you can trade between pairs of altcoins and Bitcoin.
If you’re new to the cryptocurrency market and looking to get started as an investor, check out Binance.
It’s one of the top exchanges as of late and supports hundreds of tokens. Binance also includes a highly secure wallet that you can use to store your cryptocurrency tokens.