Looking for a Bitcoin Alternative? Here are 6 Coins to Consider


Top Alternatives to Bitcoin

Bitcoin is the king of digital currencies, at least for the time being. There are several competing digital currencies, however, that could one day rival bitcoin.

Many of these currencies claim to offer certain technical advantages over bitcoin. Other currencies are taking a whole new angle on digital currencies, trying not just to offer an alternative to cash, but also to offer software development opportunities, social media platforms, and other services powered by the blockchain.

For now, bitcoin enjoys a huge lead over the competition, at least in terms of market cap. With a market cap of $10 billion dollars as of writing this article, bitcoin is about ten times as large as the closest competition. Still, one day Ethereum, Steem, Litecoin, or another contenders could steal the crown. That’s why we’re going to take a moment to go over bitcoin’s chief competitors.

The Challenger: Ethereum (& Ethereum Classic)

Ethereum has been gaining a lot of attention as of late. This public blockchain software aims to support a lot more than “just” a digital currency. Developers can actually code software, and then power that software through the public blockchain.

Individuals can then sell their processing power and be paid with “ether” -a digital currency somewhat akin to bitcoin- in exchange. Currently, etherium is the world’s second largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.

Following a hack back in July, Ethereum split into two competing currencies. The “new” Ethereum (just called Ethereum) undid the hack. “Classic” Ethereum maintained the hack. Now, the two Ethereums are competing against each other.

Ethereum itself has a market cap north of $1 billion dollars, and is the second largest digital currency, trailing only bitcoin. Ethereum classic has a market cap of just over $141 million, making it the fourth largest digital currency.

Click here to learn more about Ethereum

Ripple: Bitcoin rival or companion?

Ripple emerged in 2012 and is now a very popular online payment processing platform and digital currency. Perhaps the most important aspect of ripple is the fact that it allows for instant conversion into different currencies. You can even convert bitcoin to ripple, and vice-versa.

Ripple sees itself not as a competitor to bitcoin, but instead a compliment. By making currency conversions easy, ripple can give bitcoin users and others easy access to traditional currencies. OpenCoin, the company behind ripple, plans  to distribute 100 billion ripples, although only half will be put into circulation.

With a market cap of $220 million dollars, Ripple is the world’s third largest digital currency.

Click here to learn more about Ripple

Litecoin: Certainly Not a “Lite” Weight

Litecoin is one of the older alternative digital currencies out there, having emerged in 2011. Like bitcoin, there is no central authority, new coins are created through solving algorithms, and over time these algorithms are becoming more difficult to solve.

There are many important differences, however. Litecoin’s overall cap limit is set at 84 million, compared to bitcoin’s 21 million. The algorithms themselves are much easier to solve and can still be solved without special mining equipment. Further, litecoin blocks are created every 2.5 minutes, compared to bitcoin’s 10 minutes, making it possible to support far more transactions.

Currently, Litecoin is the world’s fourth largest digital currency, by market cap, weighing in at about $175 million.

Click here to learn more about Litecoin


Right behind Litecoin with a market cap of about $170 million is steem. Steemit is among the more interesting platforms out there. People can get paid, with steem, to write and curate articles. You can also rate and comment on articles, also getting steem.

The front page of Steemit, which looks somewhat like Reddit, is filled with a huge range of stories. Instead of mining bitcoins, or buying them, if you want to earn Steem, then you have to contribute to the community. Steem was launched just this year (2016) and yet has already secured a huge market cap. Don’t be surprised if this platform gains even more ground in the future.

Click here to learn more about Steem


Dash is based closely on bitcoin software. Basically, developers wanted to address some of the problems inherent in bitcoin, such as slow transaction processing times, and thus decided to create a new currency, simply entitled “dash”.

Like bitcoin, dash features advanced privacy features. Some would even say that dash offers improved privacy. Dash also offers instant transactions, whereas bitcoin transactions can take several minutes. Further, dash uses what it calls “Masternodes” to double check the blockchain and to ensure that it is not being unduly manipulated.

Fees are low, the system is global, and like bitcoin, dash is still P2P with no centralized authority. Given the technical advantages of this currency, it’s certainly worth a close watch.

Click here to learn more about Dash


Dogecoin is the smallest digital currency on this list, with a market cap of only $25 million. Still, what dogecoin lacks in size, it makes up for with its relatively loyal fan base. Dogecoin gets its name and branding from the “doge” Internet meme, which featured a Shiba Inu dog. This clever branding has helped make dogecoin one of the more well-known bitcoin alternatives.

Dogecoin miners can process transactions in only about a minute. Further, unlike bitcoin and many other crypto-currencies, there is no limit to the number of dogecoins that can be mined. This lack of an upper limit, and ease of mining, however, means that individual dogecoins are not worth too much, with a hundred of them being worth only a few pennies.

Click here to learn more about Dogecoin

Conclusion: Bitcoin leads the race, but competition is tightening

Bitcoin isn’t going away anytime soon, and through the near future, it will most likely remain the premier global digital currency. Still, competitors for the best altcoin like ethereum and steem are offering very unique twists on digital currencies. Others, like Dash and Ethereum, may be more technically sound. As a result, these competing currencies may some day catch up to, or even surpass, bitcoin.

Besides the currencies mentioned in this article, there are several other worthy competitors. NEM, MaidSafeCoin, and NXT are just a few competing currencies that come to mind. In the future, the the digital currency environment is sure to evolve, so make sure you keep your eye on it.

Brian Booker

An international financial analyst and writer. He has consulted for the Malaysian government, various MNC's, and other organisations. He focuses on currencies, commodities, and emerging South East Asian markets.


    • Ofir Beigel on

      I haven’t taken a deep look into it but I would personally not invest in it. Doesn’t seem like a real currency to me.

    • Zsofia - 99Bitcoins support on

      This is a fairly newly issued coin, we do not have any experience with it yet.

  1. What about thebillioncoin(TBC)..it’s taking the west African crypto market,,,pls,kindly look into it,and let me in on its propects


    recently I heard about LCF COIN. Website is lcfhc.com. they are in pre-launch phase. They are offering 3000 LCF coins for every user after completing registration. What you advise on that?

    • Zsofia - 99Bitcoins support on

      Haven’t heard about it but I would be very careful in where I invest my money. I suggest understanding exactly what the coins is about and deciding for yourself if it seems like a good investment. Never rely on other people’s opinions.

    • Ofir Beigel on

      Hey Matt.
      I haven’t looked too much at Ripple lately so I can’t really say. The main thing that bothers me about it is that it’s not decentralized like Bitcoin.

  3. Please guide regarding EB 3 coin. It was recently launched in India and I am told it has already done good tie ups and is bound to appreciate in short term. Its available for purchase/sale on vpaybits.

    If not above, kindly suggest any other cryptocurrencies apart from Bitcoin, good for investment.

  4. Dinesh Tripurana on


    What is your opinion on ads cash coin which releases in 12 more days with initial selling price at 40 ads cash coins per dollar.

    Many thanks in advance.

    • Ofir Beigel on

      I haven’t really heard of them. I tend to ignore most ICOs as they are usually a lot of hype and little substance (or user traction). Once a coin is established (e.g. Ethereum) I dig in a bit deeper. It’s impossible to follow all of the altcoins around. I believe focus is key.

  5. As of March 2017. what do you think would be a good buy? Hopefully one that will rise like Bitcoin!

    Much thanks in advance.

    • Ofir Beigel on

      Hi Hon,
      I can’t really say. Personally I invest my money only in Bitcoin. If you have a specific currency that interests you I suggest you study it in depth and understand exactly why you want to invest in it. Don’t just take other people’s advice since in the end it’s your money that’s at stake.

  6. what about yocoin and yogold? also all these competing coins to bitcoin, do they appreciate in value over time? can they be used to pay for goods and services? which do you think one should invest in apart from bitcoin?

    • I think all of these altcoins are very dangerous and personally I wouldn’t invest too much money in them if any. If you do decide to invest make sure to do your homework and know exactly what it is you’re investing in.

  7. LTC & DOGE –They do not bring anything new. Ethereum is actually valuable for developers only, can transfer value from point A to point B as any other. I agree that the DASH is valuable, but added to the list would also Bitshares and MAIDSAFE because they both bring something new

    • Midesafe was mentioned at the end, Bitshares I haven’t looked into yet. However since we didn’t want to overload the article we used mainly the market cap to choose the top 6.

  8. UselessArticle on

    “Ripple emerged in 2012 and is now a very popular online payment processing platform and digital currency” LOL!!!!!!! Ripple died as a cryptocurrency. Look at coinmarketcap for daily trade volume… it is the furthest thing from “very popular”.

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