Beyond bitcoin: These altcoins are super popular

By Paul R. La Monica, CNN Business

Bitcoin and Ethereum are the Cola and Pepsi of Crypto: Their total value of approximately $ 1 trillion makes up nearly two-thirds of the total $ 1.6 trillion of digital currencies worldwide.

But like some soft drink fans Dr. Prefer Pepper, there is also many other alternatives in crypto – more than 10,000 of them loudly Research page CoinMarketCap.

Many of these “altcoins” have legitimate niche use cases for specific industries. They are not like cryptos started as a joke Elon Musk’s beloved Dogecoin and be Dog cousin Shiba Inu.

One of the top performing crypto pairs this year is two related tokens aimed at online content creators – Theta and Theta Fuel. Theta is up nearly 400% in 2021, while Theta Fuel is up an astonishing 1,700%.

Both run on a blockchain known as the theta network, allowing PC users with unused bandwidth to share video streams with others on the network. The reward? You can mine tokens. Theta has formidable supporters from across the digital media world, including YouTube co-founder Steve Chen and Twitch co-founder Justin Kan who are Theta consultants.

Meanwhile, many other altcoins are attracting more attention in the crypto investment community – and many of these investors say this is just the beginning.

“This is still the early days for blockchain networks. Many others are being built, ”said Greg King, founder and CEO of Osprey Funds, a company that invests in cryptocurrencies. “Not all try to imitate Bitcoin.”

King said he was focused on two smaller coins: polkadot and algorand. King described Polkadot as an internet of blockchains that helps connect different networks and transfer coins between them.

And he said Algorand is a more environmentally friendly “green” cryptocurrency than Bitcoin, which has been criticized by many, including Musk, for the enormous amount of energy used by people “mining” the cryptocurrency on massive servers.

Algorand are distributed more energy efficiently as they are part of what is known as the proof-of-stake distribution, which randomly selects blocks to be distributed to the users rather than being rewarded to the people who mine large chunks of the currency.

King believes investors should focus more on cryptos and tokens like these two that have legitimate uses – and not get caught up in the hype and noise of things like Dogecoin that is coming this year thanks to tweets of more than 6,000 % is up Musk – although it’s a joke.

“Meme coins are a little distracting, but I think it’s part of the libertarian side of crypto,” King said, referring to the fact that people who are skeptical of government-backed currencies tend to flock to digital coins . “There will be many signs that range from silly to serious and many in between,” he said.

Michael Sikorsky, Chairman of Copia Wealth Studios, agreed. He said his company owns Ethereum and Bitcoin, but also several other altcoins that are less mainstream.

Sikorsky said Copa Wealth Studios has positions in Cardano and Polygon, two other cryptos that are similar to Algorand in that they are not mined by power-hungry supercomputers.

“We get our beak wet,” said Sikorsky. However, he added that investors need to keep in mind that this and other cryptos will remain volatile.

So altcoins aren’t for the faint of heart, but they won’t go away either.

“This is becoming a real asset class,” said Charlie Silver, CEO of Permission.io, which has a token called ASK, which is aimed at e-commerce advertisers.

But he warned that successful “altcoins must have real use. Those who are just gambling are not going to be good for the industry, ”said Silver. “But we see this as the next big wave of investment.”

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