best cryptocurrencies to invest in 2021

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  • Not all cryptocurrencies are the same and when it comes to choosing one for your investment, one size does not fit all.
  • Doing your own research (DYOR) is imperative when looking to engage in the crypto market.
  • Here’s what to look out for and what makes the popular cryptocurrencies on the market crowd favorites.

There are over 6,500 cryptocurrencies at last count. Not all of them are equally desirable of course, just as not all of the real world’s currencies are on the same footing.

Investors looking to enter the cryptoverse have a number of questions to address — whether to buy a lot of one currency, divide their money between two different cryptocurrencies, or participate in the movement of multiple currencies.

There is no one size fits all formula and deciding which cryptocurrencies to invest in varies depending on the risk appetite of one person versus another.

Specific cryptocurrencies are more suited to specific needs, such as for investors, application developers, day traders, and so on. Having a deeper understanding of currencies, would give you a better chance of making an informed decision.

Do your own research (DYOR) — Here’s what to look for:


Age and enthusiast trust – The community that rises around a cryptocurrency and the trust it reposes in it makes all the difference between a currency that reaches the top of the charts, or one that sinks with no trace.

Blockchain generation – Cryptocurrencies can be categorised into coins or tokens, and newer generations unlock more possibilities by the underlying blockchain.

Speciality – Over a time period, each currency settles into a different niche.

Supply conditions – Supply being limited or unlimited can shape basic aspects of how a currency is used, and the impact it has on the wider economy.

Value and divisibility – Transaction pricing benefits from the flexibility of a hundred rupee currency that can be divided into 100 notes of one rupee each, and further subdivided into a hundred coins of one paisa each. Similarly, a cryptocurrency whole that can be divided into a million/billion sub-units, allows for flexibility in transactions.

Transaction costs – There is always a cost to handling a transaction, the only question is whether that means losing 4% or just 0.00025% in the process.

Transaction speed – This would be analogous to waiting in a check-out queue, you’d prefer the cashier confirming your purchase or sale as soon as possible.

Perceived transaction privacy – Within the crypto community, currencies can be perceived to allow for differing levels of privacy, even if law enforcement authorities have their methods to trace almost every transaction.

Notably, intangible and external factors do influence how a currency performs in the long run, and how it performs compared to other currencies. Many of the factors noted above can also have an impact on the currency we use daily.

Popular cryptocurrencies and what makes them attractive investments


While nothing can replace doing your own research, here we discuss the competitive advantages between eight of the top currencies that have had a bright outlook thus far.

Bitcoin – Continues to dominate and gain ground against other cryptocurrencies, being the oldest that has survived since a decade. It has pretty much fallen into the slot of an asset you buy for the long term.

Ethereum – Introduced innovations to the blockchain, and became a platform for other applications; it is the silver to Bitcoin’s gold. Ether is what you need to take part in high-value trades including non-fungible tokens (NFT).

Cardano – Claims to be more friendly to the environment, than other currencies. Like company dividends on stock, it is able to justify stronger prices over time, as it has gathered real-world uses, from farm supply chains to fighting retail plagiarism.

Tether – Uniquely in the crypto world, a significant rise or fall in this currency’s value would be seen as a failure. That is because it is a ‘stablecoin’ which is used to buy and sell other cryptocurrencies.

Solana – Is positioned in the sunrise sector of decentralized finance (DeFi) solutions, with 368 dApps built on top of it. It plays nice with other networks as well, and is attractive to developers, with users of those applications likely to need Solana tokens.

Polkadot – Applies a lot of the lessons that cryptocurrencies learnt over a decade, with advantages that could help it dominate the landscape. It plays well with others, costs less to transact and at a faster speed; which is quite the dream of the developing crypto finance sector.

Dogecoin – Created as a meme/joke, even the co-founder is stunned by this coin. Its value rose sharply with celebrity encouragement, but experts say its nature ensures that it may not rise so high again in the future.

Monero XMR – Turned out to become a number of things that society imagined Bitcoin to be. It is most comfortable in the darkness, can be relatively untraceable, holds value, and it can confidentially be created on home computers.

Eight of the currencies that interest the market the most:


Bitcoin / BTC Ethereum / ETH Cardano / ADA Tether / USDT Solana / SOL Polkadot / DOT Dogecoin / DOGE Monero / XMR
Edit
Age/enthusiast trust 11 years, high trust 8 years, high trust 4 years, moderate trust 6 years, low trust 1.5 years, moderate trust 1 year, moderate 8 years, moderate 7 years, moderate
Blockchain gen Coin, 1st gen Token, 2nd gen Token, 3rd gen Token, 1st gen Token, 2nd gen Token, 3rd gen Coin, 1st gen Coin, 1st gen
Speciality / Usage Purpose Held as an asset. Platform for more currencies. dApps, ‘green’ blockchain Stablecoin DeFi, NFT Cross chain transfers Meme value, low cost. Illicit transactions
Supply conditions Limited supply Unlimited Limited Unlimited Limited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
Value/divisibility High High High Low High High High High
Txn costs High High Moderate Low Low Low Moderate Low
Txn speed Hours Minutes Minutes Minutes Seconds Minutes Minutes Minutes
Perceived txn privacy Low Low Moderate Moderate Moderate Moderate Moderate High

SEE ALSO:
How The Limited Supply of Bitcoin Has Driven Up Its Value
Top 10 crypto currencies in the world – the story behind Bitcoin and other Altcoins
Beyond Bitcoin — Stablecoins, altcoins, DApps and other types of cryptocurrencies
How Do Cryptocurrency Holders Make Money

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