By now, almost everybody in the world may have likely heard about the cryptocurrency that started it all in “cryptodom”: Bitcoin. But presently, Bitcoin is not the only famous or investment-worthy cryptocurrency that exists. There are a number of others too, but they aren’t quite like Bitcoin.
About nine years after Satoshi published Bitcoin’s white paper, its market cap has increased from as much as $320.58 billion in December 2017 to $1.091 trillion on December 1, 2021, and dropped to $822.31 billion on January 16, 2022, at an exchange rate of $43,436.81 to 1 bitcoin.
Anybody who had invested $100 in Bitcoin and bought one Bitcoin at the then rate of a Bitcoin to a dollar (i.e., 1BTC = $1) in February 2011 would have had approximately $4.34 million worth of Bitcoin by January 16, 2022.
Many people who invested in Bitcoin during its early days and purchased and saved as much as 1000 Bitcoins (equivalent to $1,000) in February 2011, would have about $43.44 million at the time of writing.
So far, Bitcoin has been indomitable and is the talk of the crypto world, even though it is not perfect in every regard. Its age and position as a pacesetter among cryptocurrencies definitely gives it an advantage and has helped it to occupy and maintain the number one spot in the league of cryptocurrencies.
Another advantage Bitcoin has is its popularity: the obvious fact that most people have heard so much about Bitcoin, but not so much about other cryptocurrencies, has given it a big edge over the rest.
As a result, even though people could choose from thousands of other cryptocurrencies and altcoins—which may be better long-term alternatives to Bitcoin—most cryptocurrency newbies would prefer to start with Bitcoin.
But despite its age and certain characteristics that place it on top of other cryptocurrencies, surprisingly, some people still think that Bitcoin could be the worst cryptocurrency to own or to invest in.
Because the age, characteristics, and popularity of Bitcoin have made it the top superstar of all cryptocurrencies, it is clearly the frontrunner every year and pulls the entire crypto market along with its volatility.
There are actually a ton of other digital coins or cryptos that are in the financial market and have improved on the characteristics of Bitcoin, in order to highlight their own pros and somewhat expose Bitcoin’s cons.
The main characteristics of Bitcoin are as follows
- Bitcoin network is decentralized
- Bitcoin is minable
- Creation or mining of Bitcoin occurs through proof-of-work
- Bitcoin’s trading symbol is “BTC”
- Bitcoin transactions are anonymous—but not completely anonymous
- Bitcoin transaction time is usually between 30 minutes and 24 hours
- Bitcoin mining requires a lot of energy.