Chances are you’ve never heard of Bitcoin. Ethereum must also sound familiar to you now that one copy is worth almost $4000. But have you ever heard of Cardano (ADA)? With a record price of 3 dollars last week, the currency is not yet close to the big boys. But as number three in the world, you can’t ignore Cardano either.
What is Cardano (ADA)?
We start at the beginning: what is Cardano? You can therefore compare the digital currency with other cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. The project is popular because several advantages of other cryptocurrencies are combined in Cardano. Moveco.io has enough information. The coin has, among other things, the secure storage value of Bitcoin, the low transaction costs of Litecoin and the ‘smart contracts’ of Ethereum. More about those smart contracts later.
Last Thursday, the price of cryptocurrency Cardano rose above three dollars for the first time. As a result, the digital currency has a market value of almost 100 billion. Cardano is the second largest cryptocurrency in the world after Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Cardano’s blockchain technology consists of two layers. In the first layer, all transactions are stored and you can see how much has to go from one wallet to another. Example: Thomas has to pay Linda 500 ADAs. All smart contracts are stored in the second layer.
A smart contract is a digital protocol that ensures that a contract is automatically executed if certain criteria are met. For example, that a webshop payment is only sent when the PostNL deliverer has delivered the package. No financial institutions such as banks or notaries need to be involved here.
Ethereum also has ‘smart contracts’, but there they are kept on the same layer, so that transactions are processed less quickly. You understand that the digital currency of the future must be able to handle many transactions per second if you want to be a global means of payment. There are therefore those who believe that Cardano will catch up with Ethereum at some point. Folm.io has enough information. Due to the two different layers, Cardano also offers extra security compared to cryptos with only one blockchain.
More sustainable alternative to Bitcoin
There is a lot to do about Bitcoin these days, because the currency is the opposite of environmentally friendly and consumes energy. Cardano uses the so-called Proof of Stake concept. This is said to be four million times more energy efficient. You can somewhat compare the size of the energy difference with the energy consumption of a household (Cardano) and of a small country (Bitcoin).
According to founder Charles Hoskinson (who previously founded Ethereum), the entire network uses only 6 gigawatt hours of power per year. In comparison, research from the University of Cambridge shows that Bitcoin’s network consumes about 121.36 terawatt hours per year.
Lots of care
What is striking about Cardano is also how much work is put into the coin. There are three organizations that are working full-time on developing the coin. This ensures that the coin is one of the most active projects in the field of development.
In addition, Cardano’s source code has been fully vetted by experts, researchers, and scientists for errors or bugs. This is unique in the blockchain world. Cardano wants to create a high standard for cryptocurrencies.
Popular, but not worth much yet
With a price fluctuating around three dollars, you can not yet compare Cardano with the popularity of Bitcoin and Ethereum. But if you’re bummed that you didn’t get into those two coins sooner, Cardano (or another relatively unknown coin) could be an interesting choice.
With so many exciting cryptocurrency projects out there, it’s easy to focus only on new or undiscovered coins. But we must not forget the old favorites. And August is an important month for the crypto behemoth that is Ethereum (ETH), which is why it tops my list of coins to follow this month.
As for larger coins, August might be a good month to take stock and make sure your crypto portfolio is in balance. Ideally, your crypto investments should represent 5% to 10% of your total investments. Within that, aim for the bulk of your crypto assets (60% or more) in more secure, more established coins such as Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum, and perhaps Cardano (ADA).
If you want to diversify and explore smaller coins, you may see higher returns, but you also take greater risks. Cryptocurrency is already risky and many coins will fail, so it makes sense to weigh your investments accordingly. Crypto overzicht is clear
1. Ethereum and Its Hard Fork
Ethereum is set to launch a highly anticipated and somewhat controversial hard fork, dubbed the London upgrade, on August 4. A hard fork is a major change in a network’s programming that makes older versions obsolete.
The London upgrade should not be confused with the major Eth2 upgrade which is being implemented in phases and which aims to solve some of the coin’s scalability and sustainability issues. The co-founder and creator of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin, recently said that the full rollout of Eth2 may not be completed until 2022.
Still, the hard fork is important. Without getting technical, the hope is that the changes will reduce the amount of Ethereum in the market, improve transaction times and stabilize costs, Coindesk said. Transaction fees on Ethereum change depending on how busy the network is, and high fees have driven some developers to other cryptos.
However, there are some risks. The changes will reduce the fees miners receive, which may discourage Ethereum miners. This, in turn, can extend transaction times and pose a security risk. In addition, every major upgrade carries the risk of technical failures and problems.
If there are any problems, it could shock the entire alt coin market. Especially since there are so many coins built on the platform of Ethereum. With so much at stake, all eyes will be on Ethereum in August.
2. Algorand (ALGO)
Knowing that Ethereum will not fully upgrade to Eth2 until at least next year puts other programmable blockchains in the spotlight. There are several interesting cryptocurrencies in this space, but one we haven’t talked about before is Algorand. It is faster, cheaper and more environmentally friendly than Ethereum. The average transaction costs are a fraction of a cent.
According to its website, Algorand can currently process 1,000 transactions per second (TPS) and expects this to rise to 46,000 later this year. To put that in context, Ethereum is currently processing about 15 TPS and could potentially reach 100,000 TPS when Eth2 finally launches.
Built by MIT professor and Turing Award winner Silvio Micali, Algorand has several things in common with Cardano. The team is made up of academics and business leaders and it has developed its own proof-of-stake blockchain. Proof-of-stake is a more environmentally friendly way to keep the network safe — and as an investor, it means you can earn stake rewards.
Unlike Cardano, however, Algorand already has its smart contract capabilities up and running. Cardano is expected to launch it in September. Smart contracts are small pieces of code that live on the blockchain and make it programmable. It means developers can build applications and new cryptocurrencies. Waves (WAVES) has started to rise.
3. Enjin (ENJ)
With all the recent excitement over Axie Infinity (AXS) and its massive price jumps, it feels like a good time to pay attention to other gaming and non-fungible token (NFT) cryptos. NFTs are a kind of digital collectible and Enjin users can build, own and play with them. For example, earlier this year, Enjin teamed up with Microsoft and the popular video game Minecraft to create unique NFT heroes for players to use in the game.
Another interesting aspect of Enjin is its commitment to sustainability. It has already signed up to the Crypto Climate Accord and plans to launch carbon neutral NFTs by 2030. In July, it announced that it was the first NFT firm to join the United Nations Global Compact,’s weThe world’s largest sustainable business initiative. Bitcoin’s environmental cost continues to be an issue for many investors and NFT makers, so eco-friendly cryptos are worth checking out.
Gaming is a promising blockchain sector, mainly because of the potential for players to own NFTs as in-game assets. Back in the day, if a player bought something in a game, it would only be theirs in the game. The magic of NFTs is that players own them – and can trade them in the real world too. However, gaming can be unpredictable and subject to trends. And blockchain’s relatively slow transaction speed has so far held it back when it comes to running complex games.
Do your own research
This monthly column to watch altcoins aims to give you a taste of interesting cryptocurrencies and what is happening in cryptoland. I focus on what I would call “good faith” coins – coins with a clear purpose and a team behind it. But it’s a rapidly evolving industry and we don’t know how it will develop yet.
All listed coins are available from major US cryptocurrency exchanges. But before you buy, it’s important to do your own research. Only you know your interests, risk tolerance and financial situation. And only you can decide which coins to add to your crypto collection.
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