Released in 2011, LTC is one of the oldest and most popular altcoins on the market. Is it enough to add this cryptocurrency to your portfolio?
To answer this question, let’s have a closer look at LTC to understand its perspectives.
What is Litecoin: The Basics
Litecoin (aka “Digital Silver”) is a hard fork of BTC. Litecoin’s creator, a prominent computer scientist Charlie Lee, sought to create a lighter version of Bitcoin.
In a way, these two cryptos complement each other. While some may say that Bitcoin might be better for storing and moving big amounts of money, Litecoin is handy for smaller everyday payments.
Litecoin’s profile at the time of writing looks like this:
- Market cap: $3,704,667,833;
- Market rank: 8;
- Trading volume: $1,951,493,040;
- All-time low: $1.20 (Jan 14th, 2015);
- All-time high: $360.93 (Dec 18th, 2017);
So far, LTC has been one of the best-performing cryptos
Between March 2017 (when one Litecoin cost around $3,7), and December of the same year, the currency shoed an impressive ROI of 10,000%. Every dollar invested turned into $100.
LTC vs. BTC: the Similarities
Litecoin and Bitcoin are financial tools that stand on the same values and go well together. Both cryptos
- Are open-source decentralized systems based on the same code;
- Are divisible into smaller units Satoshi and Litoshi (one hundred millionth of BTC/LTC);
- rely on the PoW (Proof-of-Work) algorithm for issuing new coins.
You can see Litecoin as a pimped-out Bitcoin. Though core principles remain the same, there are some changes that add value.
LTC vs. BTC: the Differences
The main differences between the two coins lie in technology. Here they are:
- LTC has a larger total supply: the total number of Litecoins in existence is 84,000,000. For BTC, this number is only 21,000,000.
- LTC blockchain is faster: in the Litecoin blockchain, it takes 2.5 min to solve a new block. The Bitcoin network is much slower — here, the standard block time is 10 minutes.
- LTC offers smaller transaction fees: in the Litecoin network, transaction fees are almost non-existent. Right now, the average LTC fee is $0.014. In the BTC network, it’s around $3,3.
- LTC makes mining more accessible: Bitcoin applies SHA-256 cryptographic algorithm and Litecoin uses Scrypt. Scrypt is much easier on your hardware, thus you don’t need any pricey and super powerful equipment to mine LTC. Instead, you can use a consumer-grade computer. The reward is 12.5 LTC per block.
How all these tech specs translate into user-centered advantages? Read on to find out.
The main pros that make Litecoin more popular (and therefore increase its investment value) are:
4x the speed of Bitcoin⚡
Litecoin wins when it comes to speed, as it’s 4 times faster than BTC. Therefore, this cryptocurrency is more usable: if you buy a takeaway coffee with LTC, it won’t get cold by the time miners validate your transaction.
Solid scalability ?
Litecoin blockchain can handle up to 56 transactions per second. Compare it with 7 for Bitcoin and 15 for Ethereum. Scalability is one of the major challenges the popular networks face, and Litecoin outperforms its rivals here.
Due to extremely low fees, Litecoin transactions are much more affordable. In most cases, you will pay no more than 0.000001 LTC/byte. As in the case of the Bitcoin network, this fee does not depend on the amount you move.
Focus on worldwide mass adoption ?
For the reasons above, “digital silver” is more convenient for daily life and affordable for more people. Therefore, it already has a large and active community behind it.
Pop science fact:
Some people are more comfortable with buying a whole coin rather than fractions. This may be another advantage of LTC over more expensive coins when it comes to adoption.
To sum it up, Litecoin is on the mission to become “peer-to-peer Internet currency that enables instant, near-zero cost payments around the world”. If they can handle the task, it means a more sustainable future.
What the Future Holds for Litecoin
According to Coinswitch.co, the future of Litecoin looks bright. They expect the price of this crypto increase to $230 by the end of 2020. By 2021, it could make new highs, going up to $600. This bold prognosis stands on fundamental analysis that takes into account the practical value of a coin, its tech advantages, and the number of supporters.
And what about technical analysis (TA) that focuses on price dynamics, trading volume, and similar indicators? TradingBeasts.com predicts that the price of LTC will be around $67 by 2021, and around $82 by the end of 2022.
Whatever view you take, remember not to rely on any forecast 100%. The future of any coin largely depends on the market moods and other factors that are hard to foresee.
How to Buy Store Litecoin
One of the easiest ways to buy and store your Litecoin is our very Channels app.
Here are some reasons why:
- Channels supports dozens of popular fiat and cryptocurrencies, including LTC;
- You can buy LTC for a currency of your choice, with a few finger taps;
- The app applies close-to-zero fees (probably the lowest on the market) when you move your crypto within or outside the system.