If you’ve been putting off learning about digital currencies, now is the time to do so because the cryptocurrency bubble is expanding. Bitcoin has been around for more than ten years and is almost a household name. The cryptocurrency was created in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto, who wrote a white paper under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. It is free and open source, as well as decentralized. Bitcoins do not have transaction fees, but there is no government guarantee behind the currency.

Because there are only 21 million Bitcoins available, it’s worth investigating the other cryptocurrencies on the market today. Here’s a quick rundown of five of the most popular.

If you can only think of two types of cryptocurrency, and Bitcoin is one of them, Etherium is most likely the other. After Bitcoin, Ethereum is the most widely used blockchain, with the second largest market cap. Ether is the native coin of this open-source decentralized blockchain. The platform is described by the company as a digital economy with global payment processes and applications, as well as a coin. The Ethereum blockchain is a state machine that is based on transactions.

Ethereum was founded in 2015. After a bad actor stole millions of dollars, Ethereum was split into two blockchains in 2016: Ethereum and Ethereum Classic. To prevent future theft, the new Ethereum was a hard fork from the original source code.

This cryptocurrency has only recently joined the ranks of the most well-known cryptocurrencies. The coin was created by two software engineers in order to create a payment system that does not require traditional banking fees. The coin depicts the Shiba Inu dog from the “Doge” meme. This coin’s popularity and value skyrocketed at the end of April 2021 as a result of tweets from Elon Musk and Mark Cuban. The coin, which began as a joke, is now the sixth-largest coin, with a total market value of nearly $42 billion.

This is the native cryptocurrency for Ripple Labs products. The company creates payment settlement, asset exchange, and remittance systems, which means it owns the currency and the platform that manages it. XRP is pre-mined, which means that there is a limited supply that the company gradually releases onto the market. Prior to the launch of the cryptocurrency, Ripple mined approximately 1 billion XRP. That is significantly more than the 21-million-coin limit written into Bitcoin’s source code.

If you can’t handle large price swings, this is the cryptocurrency for you. Tether is a stablecoin that is intended to keep valuations stable in contrast to more volatile coins. This coin is backed by an equal number of traditional currencies such as the US dollar, euro, or yen.

Tether coins are intended to function as a link between traditional currencies and cryptocurrencies. Its value is linked to the US dollar, but as Investopedia warns, there is no guarantee that Tether coins can be exchanged for real money.

Tether agreed to have its financial records audited to ensure that it was holding an equivalent amount of traditional currency. The company fired the first auditor assigned to perform this audit. A second accounting firm verified in March 2021 that the company’s consolidated assets exceeded its consolidated liabilities.

Gavin Wood, the cofounder of Ethereum, created the protocol for this coin, which allows arbitrary data to be transferred across blockchains. Polkadot is a multi-chain interchange and translation architecture that connects customized side-chains to public blockchains. According to the company, this enables the development of applications that obtain permissioned data from a private blockchain and use it on a public blockchain. Data from private records being sent to a public chain to verify credentials or status is an example of this type of transaction. This means that personal information can be shared publicly while still maintaining privacy.