Top 5 Best and Promising Cryptocurrency to Invest in 2018
According to World Economic Forum, the number of people worldwide that do not have access to bank accounts amounts to over two (2) billion. This number represents around 35%% of our rapidly increasing population. What are the drawbacks of not having a bank account and what OmiseGo is trying to solve?
- No international payments;
- Have to carry a large amount of cash on you;
- If you are robbed, everything can be stolen (financially);
- Ease of transactions is reduced; and
- Narrow investment avenues
OmiseGo can see this problem, especially in the economically developing countries and they aim to use blockchain technology to solve this problem.
The payment processing industry is huge, with payment processors moving over $3.6 trillion per year. The largest processors are companies like VISA, Mastercard, Alipay and Wechat who each process billions each day. The problem with current payment companies is they operate in a centralized database model, they don’t communicate with each other.
A company owns a private database, which is a library of data, stocked on a computer or on many computers called servers. There are three problems with the traditional centralized database model:-
- Privacy; and
The idea behind OmiseGo is to solve the above-mentioned problems. The statistics have shown the fact that there are hundreds of million people in Asia, and 2 billion people worldwide, are unbanked. OmiseGO wants to provide unbanked people with an easy, open solution allowing them to own, send, receive money on a dematerialized form, whatever currency or asset they want to send, and at a minimal cost.
OmiseGO wants to provide users and merchants with a universal, decentralized solution, making it easy and cost less to send money from any network to any network, agnostically among currencies or asset types, and countries and jurisdictions.
What is hindering OmiseGo?
While the blockchain has many very positive aspects compared to the traditional centralized database model, it still has a scalability problem that needs to be solved.
OmiseGo already aiming to be compliant with the Plasma scaling proposals. Buterin has a close relationship with the development of OMG, so it would seem to be a legitimate expectation that this project will indeed deliver the goods.
Plasma is a solution co-developed by Joseph Poon and Vitalik Buterin, both key advisors of the OmiseGO project, that allows an extreme scalability, potentially billions of state updates per second.
Who’s Behind OmiseGo?
OmiseGo stands out because it is being developed by a well-established company, Omise that was founded in 2013 and is a venture-backed payments company operating in Thailand, Japan, Singapore, and Indonesia. It provides an online payment solution already used by thousands of customers.
The OmiseGo team consists of Omise core team and well-known blockchain developers. The advisors are the strongest part of OmiseGo project because they almost all are from Ethereum foundation.
Other than the lead team working on OmiseGo, the following are all officially advising the project: Vitalik Buterin (ETH lead ) , Dr. Gavin Wood (ETH and Parity lead) , Vlad Zamfir (Casper/ETH lead), Joseph Poon (Lightning Net lead) and Roger Ver ofas well as many others, including a professor of Quantitative Finance. I am not aware of any other BC project that has such a list of advisors of this caliber.
Some of the key investors in Omise include SBI Investment, SMBC, Ascend Capital, SMDV, Golden Gate Ventures, and East Ventures.
Why Invest in OmiseGo?
OmiseGo has released a roadmap for 2017 / 2018 year that shows various features and enhancements that will be to OMG users. In Q4 2017, first wallet SDK prototype will be released for workshop testing and development. This is followed by the release of wallet SDK public release in Q1 2018.
After that, public blockchain will be released to the OMG users which will make staking possible. Then in Q3 2018, cash in/out touchpoint interface with payment gateway will be released.
Plasma development and introduction are expected to be done in Q3 2018 as well.
Hence, 2018 will be the year of OmiseGo. Definitely, OmiseGo is the next cryptocurrency to invest in 2018.
Litecoin is one of the best cryptocurrencies alternatives to Bitcoins that was designed to manage some of the issues that could be holding Bitcoin back. It is also one of the first altcoins in existence after Bitcoin. In fact, Litecoin was actually one of the first forks of Bitcoin. Unlike Segwit2x, it was not a hostile or contentious fork that sought to replace Bitcoin.
It was introduced 2011 (BTC in 2009) and it is almost identical to Bitcoin. So any trust and adoption rate of Bitcoin should bleed over to Litecoin.
Though it isn’t quite as innovative as Ethereum, it still has potential. Litecoin’s value is derived entirely from user adoption, and there’s also a difference in leadership for the companies involved too.
Litecoin was created by an ex-Google employee called Charlie Lee, who’s entirely transparent on social media about what he’s doing with the currency. Charlie is still leading its development and very active in the cryptocurrency community.
Litecoin is very similar to Bitcoin, but through tweaking to the settings, it is technically a superior algorithm. Although both Litecoin and Bitcoin are quite similar, there are some differences that differentiate both of them (see infographic)
Why Are The Key Advantages of Litecoin Over Bitcoin?
- Faster transaction times. Litecoin can produce blocks for its blockchain much faster than Bitcoin. In fact, it only takes Litecoin 2.5 minutes to complete one block (or transaction). It takes Bitcoin 10 minutes;
- Less expensive transactions. First to successfully implement Lightning network for instant, zero-fee transactions. Litecoin also has a far simpler algorithm. It doesn’t take as much energy or time to mine Litecoin;
- First to complete a cross-chain atomic swap (with Decred).
- In the process of adding confidential transactions; and
- Faster to adopt new technology, without community infighting over upgrades. Bitcoin’s community can hardly agree on anything, a fact that we’ve been keenly observing with the chaos surrounding the previously proposed “fork.”
Why Invest in Litecoin?
Litecoin has the potential to mimic Bitcoin prices but it will need a growth spurt in popularity for that to happen.
Litecoin’s scrypt hashing algorithm makes it easier for miners to access the system.This could cause a couple of things. First, it could encourage more novice miners to participate in the Litecoin system. This will help with widespread Litecoin usage since many users will be miners that never got a chance to mine Bitcoin.
Charlie Lee has ambitious plans for Litecoin. The arrangements have already been made for the Lightning Network to be introduced soon to reduce the transaction speed even further. We all thought Bitcoin would be the first one with the Lightning Network, but Bitcoin has hit so many stumbling blocks. This is exactly another plus point of differentiation that Litecoin is more adaptive to progressive change than Bitcoin.
Litecoin developers are also scheduled to add the Lightning Network to the Litecoin platform which is expected to improve the scalability of transactions and to investigate the feasibility of anonymous smart contracts.
One should start considering investing in Litecoin is that it is massively undervalued relative to Bitcoin, and in this undervaluation lies massive opportunity. The supply of Litecoin is four times greater than the supply of Bitcoin and Bitcoin should, theoretically, always be worth four times more than Litecoin.
Also, because you can now buy Litecoin straight from exchanges like Coinbase, you no longer need to buy bitcoin first. Now that the transaction process is direct from fiat money to litecoin, the need for BTC tokens will be reduced.
If Litecoin successfully goes ahead with all the planned updates, then the market may respond to it positively.
The acceleration would not be enough to catch Bitcoin prices but it might put Litecoin on par with Ethereum that is on the third coin on our list.
Ethereum is another of the most popular solutions for cryptocurrency investors today and it will continue in 2018.
Designed by a programmer called Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum works in an entirely different way to Bitcoin. Though it can do many of the same things that Bitcoin can do, its primary purpose is to act as a platform for building decentralized applications.
The biggest difference between Bitcoin and Ethereum is the use of blockchains. While Bitcoin’s blockchain records contracts, showing how digital funds have moved from one place to another, Etherum has expanded this concept. The Ethereum blockchain uses a far more complex scripting language, and its smart contracts can form complex applications that have a broad range of potential uses.
Developers have recently started to take notice of the potential that Ethereum can offer, building projects on top of the cryptocurrency. Some individuals have even used Ethereum to raise millions of dollars through crowd sales known as ICOs, and the trend remains strong today. This makes Ethereum a powerful option for those invested in finance. However, the popularity of the currency means that the price has skyrocketed.
Why Invest in Ethereum?
Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum’s creator, recently released an implementation guide that reveals the network’s developers will first start with a ‘hybrid’ system that merges bitcoin-style proof-of-work mining with its much-anticipated and still-experimental proof-of-stake system called Casper, created by Buterin.
With Casper, the name of the game is long-term sustainable scaling. For the Ethereum network to be able to achieve mainstream adoption, it needs to be able to handle extremely large amounts of transactions in seconds. To this end, Casper is designed to help Ethereum achieve this much-need, large-scale network scalability.
A highly anticipated update to the Ethereum network could be happening before schedule according to developers. The Casper update may be rolled out as early as the next hard-fork, Constantinople instead of previous plans for it to come with Serenity, the last development phase, in 2018.
There is no fixed date for Constantinople yet but it should be towards the end of this year or early 2018 according to the planned Ethereum development phase, or roadmap called Metropolis. The previous hard-fork, Byzantium, was the fifth for Ethereum which went through without a hitch on October 16.
Ethereum would survive a bear market like Bitcoin saw in 2014-2016 because of its Community. Ethereum has the second largest one just behind Bitcoin and people using the platform are not all speculator. They are developers, entrepreneurs, creators and they would keep on using it no matter what the price of an Ether is.
There are two other fundamental issues beyond scalability that Casper will be focused on tackling:
- Censorship: currently, Bitcoin miners enjoy a zero-sum game dynamic—if a miner’s block is censored/gets lost, then every single one of their competitor miners benefit accordingly. Ethereum’s PoS will shift the network to a “coordination game” dynamic, wherein everyone benefits more if all miners’ blocks get included on the chain.
- Costs: through Ethereum’s current PoW protocol, satisfactory security can only be maintained through high operating costs. Casper will ease this dynamic, by making it so honest validators can cheaply validate while attackers’ costs are conversely extremely expensive.
The Casper update will be a blockbuster update that will fundamentally change the way the Ethereum network functions, of course, greatly for the better, the network’s developers hope.
#4 IOTA (or MIOTA)
Internet of Things (IoT) holds one of the biggest potentials for human life change. It might become the fastest growing market in next couple years but the more important thing is that the development in related areas is interconnecting.
Using smartwatch and collect data from our morning run is what we experience today, but in couple years there will be interconnected every single device we use and all machines will communicate to each other.
Since we imagine such a world with billions of devices, machines, and humans that are communicating with each other, we are facing a huge problem with actual infrastructure and hardware/software standards. In other words, scaling will cause problems.
IOTA is a new cryptocurrency that focused on Machine-2-Machine (M2M) transactions. The main purpose of IOTA is to serve the machine economy by enabling feeless M2M (Machine-to-Machine) payments. IOTA is a new currency that enables a machine-to-machine economy that powers the Internet of Things (IoT) infrastructure. It’s radically different from other cryptos because it doesn’t even use blockchain for its transactions.
Instead, it uses a completely new concept called the tangle.
Tangle is an acyclic directed graph. It looks like a web, which is unlike the blockchain. Each transaction is confirmed by only two other nodes. So, IOTA allows for
- Unlimited scalability. The more people adopt IOTA, the faster its transactions work.
- No transaction fees.
- True microtransactions are possible (because of no transaction fees).
Why Invest in IOTA (MIOTA)?
We personally love the concept and we think it would take off heavily post 2018 and 2019 as more IoT and artificially intelligent (AI) devices become prevalent.
Bitcoin, having been created in 2009 and distributed to hundreds of thousands of computers around the world, is starting to become well understood. There are certainly many areas we need to explore, but certain things like blockchain security have been tested globally and have yet to file.
In addition, Bitcoin is being tested in many other ways, like in scalability and performance in different environments. This has given people a better understanding of the technology and more confidence in what it can or can’t do.
Tangle, on the other hand, has only been in existence since late 2016 in mainnet and is not as widely adopted as blockchain. There’s a lot left to be proven about the technology and it just needs the time to prove itself. Until then, we shouldn’t just ‘assume’ the tech works as expected, but watch it carefully and understand what it excels at and where it fails.
Afterall, if you know its potential, this technology naturally succeeds the blockchain technology as its next evolutionary step and comes out with features required for micropayments conducted on a global scale.
The team behind IOTA has been growing as of late and counts with many experienced individuals. If everything goes well, and if the team is able to accomplish their plans, then the sky is the limit for IOTA. We could be on a brink of seeing a superior technology to the blockchain.
#1 Informal Partnership with Microsoft
The addition of IOTA’s latest partners comes not long after the announcement of collaboration with healthcare providers in Norway and the renowned Imperial College London’s Centre for Cryptocurrency Research and Engineering (IC3RE) in June this year. Along with academic research, the IOTA Foundation is actively developing the Tangle ecosystem in an effort to create an environment that’s functional, as well as attractive to enterprise and individual users.
Recently, IOTA has been making waves recently by working with Microsoft, Accenture, Bosch, Fujitsu, Samsung, and nearly two-dozen other companies to develop a blockchain solution tied to the Internet of Things (IOT). It has also been reported that the IOTA Foundation has partnered with Cisco, Volkswagen, and Samsung around its Data Marketplace.
IOTA aims to provide crucial market data collected through sensors to various companies for a micro fee. As the company gains market share, the MIOTA cryptocurrency is expected to appreciate in price.
Beyond the partnering companies mentioned above, other partners in the new test data marketplace include Cisco, Orange, Daimler, Accenture, Deutsche Telekom, EWE, Tine, PwC, Schneider Electric, DNV GL, and others.
#2 Launch of Data Marketplace
The first publicly accessible data marketplace for the Internet of Things. What makes this undertaking especially intriguing is that the marketplace will be entirely powered by a distributed ledger. It is an ambitious project that has been in the making since 2015. The Data Marketplace is IOTA’s most comprehensive pilot study thus far.
For those who don’t know what Data Marketplace is, it is a decentralized data platform to open up the data silos that currently keep data limited to the control of a few entities. Data is one of the most imperative ingredients in the machine economy and the connected world.
The idea of the platform is to enable a future where any connected sensor or device can grab data from an open marketplace, for a micro-fee, to power an application. Smart city sensors, for example, could use environmental data collected via Samsung’s ARTIK sensors to drive IoT-based pollution alerts.
Not only that, connected cars could perhaps tap data from Bosch, the world’s largest automotive part supplier, to get details on a part that appears to be malfunctioning.
The IOTA ecosystem is itself still in beta testing, and the new marketplace is a pilot at this stage.
If IOTA (MIOTA) does scale as the developers claim it will then it will be a huge year for the still relatively unknown altcoin as people will be able to use it as a currency as well as a distributed ledger for the internet of things. That is the primary reason why people are buying IOTA.
#3 Robert Bosch Venture Capital bets on IOTA as it invests in the future of IoT
The IOTA Foundation announced that Robert Bosch Venture Capital GmbH (RBVC) — the corporate venture capital company of the Bosch Group — has purchased a significant number of IOTA tokens. Dr. Hongquan Jiang, partner at RBVC, will also join the IOTA Foundation’s advisory board. The move is a strategic one for RBVC as it looks to the future of the Internet of Things (IoT).
#5 Raiden Network
Like every other blockchain, Ethereum intends to support as many users as it can. At present Ethereum can support only 13 transactions per second and that is relatively lower than Visa and Mastercard. Both Visa and Mastercard can process 4,000 transactions per second.
In order to get Ethereum on a mass adoption, Raiden proposes to provide an easy to use conduit for off-chain (i.e. not on the Ethereum blockchain) payments without the need of trust among the involved parties. This is done by broadcasting transactions on the blockchain only during settlements, and not at each individual transaction between the two parties.
It is similar to the Off-chain Segregated Witness Lightning Network for bitcoin. Inspired by bitcoin’s Lightning Network, the technology would shift the majority of transactions off of the ethereum blockchain to create an alternate network of peer-to-peer payment channels.
Raiden network is an open source project, developed primarily by a company called Brainbot Technologies. From the GitHub repository, the project has been under development since September 2015, or not long after the Ethereum blockchain was live.
The Raiden Network is currently under development and will drastically improve the speed of Ethereum Transactions. The Raiden Network can be applied across a wide range of areas, including content distribution, IoT sector, frictionless token systems, and decentralized exchanges. Additionally, it can be used to access and monetize APIs what is at the core of the machine-to-machine market.
In September 2017, the testnet for the Raiden Network was a major milestone for the project, one that will lead to the next phase of development before the code is ready to launch on the live Ethereum network.
What are the advantages of Raiden Network?
- Allows Micro-payments thanks to lower fees (7 times lower than current Blockchain transaction fees);
- Fast and scalable therefore able to handle the high volume from the micro-transactions;
- Works with variable tokens as long as they follow Ethereum’s Standard Token API; and
- Confidential because the single transfers are recorded in a smart contract stored off the public ledger (Off-chain).
Why Invest in Raiden Network (RDN)?
Raiden currently consists of three independent projects: µRaiden, Raiden Network, and Raidos. There is a working implementation of µRaiden, which will be deployed on the Ethereum main net shortly.
A developer preview will be released soon and allow Dapp developers to get a first impression of the API and the properties of the system, also enable them to build prototypes that interact with the Raiden Ropsten-based test network. In its current state, the technology is not ready for production use. Significant tooling and even changes to the core protocol still need to be developed.
Raidos is currently only in its planning phase and development has not been kicked off yet.
Mainstream applications for the Raiden network are not hard to find. The Lightning network is not expected to go live anytime soon, whereas Raiden will become a part of the Ethereum ecosystem maybe early 2018.
Many Ethereum users will be willing to pay a small fee to access the Raiden Network. It is one of the few blockchain based projects which will have hundreds of thousands of users as soon as it is launched.