In this article we will analyse and explain what is Litecoin, why it was created, and how it differentiates with other cryptocurrencies. At the moment, Litecoin is one of the most important virtual currencies in the market and calls the attention of several investors.
What Is Litecoin?
Litecoin (LTC), is a cryptocurrency created by Charlie Lee and a group of experts as a fork of the Bitcoin network in 2011. The main intention behind Litecoin was to complement Bitcoin’s network and be the currency for transactions and payments, while Bitcoin the currency for savings. People tends to call Litecoin the ‘silver’ to bitcoin’s ‘gold.’
Charlie Lee wrote about Litecoin:
“Litecoin is the result of some of use who joined together on IRC in an effort to create a real alternative currency similar to Bitcoin. We wanted to make a coin that is silver to Bicoin’s gold. Various alternative currencies have come and gone.”
Litecoin works with a proof of work algorithm that allows interested parties to mine Litecoin in a similar way to Bitcoin. The main difference between Bitcoin and Litecoin is that Litecoin uses Scrypt as proof of work (PoW) hashing algorithm that tends to be easier for CPUs and GPUs to mine that currency. Bitcoin needs to powerful ASIC miners that consume important amounts of electricity and are very costly.
Litecoin has different features that are very interesting for investors and for merchants. The currency was developed in order to process fast transactions and allow people to easily send and receive cryptocurrencies for just a fraction of the fees that Bitcoin network has.
The average Litecoin block takes 2.5 minutes, compared to Bitcoin that each block takes 10 minutes. Litecoin knew that fast transactions are not as secure as Bitcoin slow transactions, but are very convenient for merchants that need their Litecoin very fast and they do not need the security layers that Bitcoin has.
But less time between blocks helps the network to process more transactions than Bitcoin. With the Lightning Network ahead, this difference could be reduced. Moreover, faster block times means that there will also be a higher number of orphaned blocks on the Litecoin’s Network.
The amount of Litecoin available will be 4 times as much of these of Bitcoin. That means that the market will see 84,000,000 LTC and no more will be ever mined. That means that the currency will be, in the long term, a deflationary cryptocurrency.
Where Can I Buy Litecoin?
Litecoin has become one of the most important cryptocurrencies in the market. That is, it can be bought in several cryptocurrency exchanges and cryptocurrency ATMs. The most important platforms where to buy Litecoin are Coinbase, Binance, and Wex.
Several countries have Cryptocurrency ATMs installed in neuralgic points. If you have one near you, you can always check whether it has Litecoin included or not.
In general, it is very easy to purchase Litecoin as when an individual decides to buy Bitcoin or any other virtual currency.
It is very important to store virtual currencies using a hardware wallet that would let you be far from hackers and other criminals.
Litecoin is now the sixth most important cryptocurrency by market capitalization ($8.37 billion dollars). At the same time, it is one of the currencies with the most trading volume. Moreover, Litecoin has been one of the top 10 cryptos in the market for years. The longest period of time in the top 10 for a cryptocurrency after Bitcoin.
At the moment of writing this article, Litecoin is being traded around $150 dollars and it has a supply of 56 million coins. In December 2017, Litecoin reached its peak when it was traded over $367 dollars per coin. At the same time, some crypto exchanges were trading this cryptocurrency for more than $400 dollars.
In 2017 it had an incredible 8200% rise. At the beginning of 2017, it was traded at $4.40 dollars per Litecoin.
In the future, Litecoin could be used by merchants in order to accept crypto payments, and could be very functional to Bitcoin when it will implement the lightning network. As Charlie Lee explained:
“Think of it being two highways: Today, Bitcoin is packed full of cars and Litecoin is empty Even with Bitcoin packed, the cars are not coming to use the Litecoin highway today because it’s not connected and it’s inconvenient (centralized exchanges and slow on-chain transfers) to go across. LN will build bridges over the highway. But a side benefit is that these bridges will connect both highways together. Maybe the bridges on Bitcoin are enough such that cars will still stay on the Bitcoin highway. My bet is that the convenience and the cheaper tolls on Litecoin highway will convince cars to cross over and use Litecoin.”
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