Bitcoin is king of crypto but Ethereum’s ascent to the top of the cryptoverse seems unstoppable.
Bitcoin accounts for about 72% of the total market cap of all cryptocurrencies, and Ethereum 15%. This is really a two-horse race at the moment, though other digital coins such as Cardano and Binance Coin are fast gaining on the market leaders.
Bitcoin was built to do one thing well — provide a way for people to transfer value from one to another without a banking or payment intermediary.
Bitcoin is seen as a store of value and is often referred to as digital gold. There are currently 18.6 million bitcoin in issue, and there will only ever be 21 million of these digital coins.
This is one key reason behind bitcoin’s remarkable price rise as an asset over the last decade.
Institutional interest in bitcoin is growing, spurred by fears that fiat currencies such as the rand and US dollar are subject to continuous inflation of money supply, which devalues their worth.
The case for Ethereum is somewhat different.
Ethereum is built on the idea of a general multi-purpose blockchain.
As a result, Ethereum is able to do many things well instead of just serve as a payment system.
Ether can be used as a digital currency, but that is not its primary purpose.
The Ethereum platform was built primarily to monetize operations of Ethereum smart contracts and dApps.
Ether bulls make the case that the world’s No. 2 crypto by market cap is the most in-demand development platform, thereby highlighting the Ethereum network’s “value not only as a platform for developers but as a worldwide financial utility.
Ethereum also serves as the backbone of a number of popular and groundbreaking platforms, including decentralized finance networks, or DeFi, nonfungible tokens, or NFTs, and DAOs, or decentralized autonomous organizations.
With inflation rising, DeFi products on ethereum are the perfect way for people to combat the uncertainty created by central bank money printing and various supply shocks.
Ethereum does not intend to be a store of value as is the case with bitcoin but derives its value from an expanding network that allows transactions between parties that do not have to trust or even know each other.
Bitcoin will likely remain king of the cryptos for the foreseeable future, but attention is shifting to the investment potential of other cryptocurrencies like Ether as other areas of the cryptocurrency ecosystem develops.