There are dozens of different cryptocurrencies, ranging from Bitcoin and Ethereum to Dogecoin and Tether, making it difficult to get started in the world of cryptocurrencies. These are the top 10 cryptocurrencies, or the total market value of all the coins now in circulation, to help you gain your bearings.
What Are Cryptocurrencies?
A cryptocurrency is a digital asset that may be traded freely, independent of a bank or centralized authority. The $870 billion cryptocurrency sector is now represented by more than 20,000 projects that total more than 20,000 cryptocurrencies.
1. Bitcoin (BTC)
- Market cap: $370 billion
The initial cryptocurrency is Bitcoin (BTC), which Satoshi Nakamoto created in 2009. BTC operates on a blockchain, which is a ledger that records transactions and is shared over a network of thousands of computers, like the majority other cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin is maintained secure and protected from fraudsters because updates to the distributed ledgers have to be validated by cracking a cryptographic puzzle, a procedure known as proof of work.
As Bitcoin has gained popularity, its price has risen. The price of a single Bitcoin in May 2016 was around $500. On July 1, 2022, the cost of one Bitcoin was around $19,400. That is an increase of about 3,780 percent.
2. Ethereum (ETH)
- Market cap: $128 billion
Because of its potential uses, including so-called “smart contracts” that automatically execute when certain conditions are fulfilled and non-fungible tokens, Ethereum—which is both a cryptocurrency and a blockchain platform—is a darling among programmers (NFTs).
Ethereum has also grown quite fast. Its price increased by over 9,509 percent from roughly $11 to $1,057 between April 2016 and the beginning of July 2022.
3. Tether (USDT)
- Market cap: $66 billion
Tether (USDT) is a stablecoin, which means it’s backed by fiat currencies like U.S. dollars and euros and theoretically maintains a value equal to one of those denominations, unlike certain other types of cryptocurrencies. As a result, investors who are cautious of the severe volatility of other coins choose Tether since its value is theoretically expected to be more stable than that of other cryptocurrencies.
4. U.S. Dollar Coin (USDC)
- Market cap: $55 billion
Similar to Tether, USD Coin (USDC) is a stablecoin that aspires for a 1 USD to 1 USDC ratio and is backed by U.S. dollars. Ethereum powers USDC, and you may use USD Coin to execute cross-border transactions.
5. Binance Coin (BNB)
- Market cap: $35 billion
One of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, Binance, accepts payments in the form of Binance Coin (BNB), a kind of cryptocurrency. Binance Coin has grown since it was introduced in 2017, and it now does more than just enable transactions on Binance’s exchange platform. Now, it may be used for trading, processing payments, or even making trip plans. Additionally, it may be sold or converted into other cryptocurrencies like Ethereum or Bitcoin.
In 2017, BNB cost just $0.10. Early in July 2022, it was selling for around $215, up almost 214,900 percent.
6. Binance USD (BUSD)
- Market cap: $17 billion
In order to develop a cryptocurrency backed by the dollar, Paxos and Binance created the stablecoin known as Binance USD (BUSD). Paxos retains a quantity of US dollars equivalent to the whole supply of BUSD in order to preserve this value. BUSD, like other stablecoins, enables traders and cryptocurrency users to transact with other crypto assets while lowering the risk of volatility.
7. XRP (XRP)
- Market cap: $15 billion
XRP is a cryptocurrency that may be used on that network to allow trades of many currency kinds, including fiat currencies and other significant cryptocurrencies. It was developed by some of the same founders as Ripple, a digital technology and payment processing firm.
XRP was worth $0.006 at the start of the year 2017. By July 1, 2022, it had increased in price to $0.31, a gain of more than 5,066 percent.
8. Cardano (ADA)
- Market cap: $15 billion
Cardano (ADA), which entered the crypto world a little later, is renowned for using proof-of-stake validation early on. By eliminating the competitive, problem-solving element of transaction verification in systems like Bitcoin, this technique reduces energy consumption, speeds up transaction times, and has a less negative effect on the environment. Cardano functions similarly to Ethereum in enabling smart contracts and decentralized apps that are powered by ADA, the native token of the platform.
In comparison to other significant crypto currencies, the rise of the Cardano ADA token has been somewhat muted. The cost of ADA was $0.02 in 2017. Its cost was $0.44 as of July 1st, 2022. This is a 2,100% increase.
9. Solana (SOL)
- Market cap: $11 billion
Solana is a platform designed to support decentralized applications, smart contracts, and decentralized finance (DeFi). It utilizes a special hybrid proof-of-stake and proof-of-history approach to handle transactions rapidly and securely. The platform is run by the native token of Solana, SOL.
SOL’s pricing began at $0.77 when it debuted in 2020. Early in July 2022, the price had increased to roughly $40.58, a gain of more than 5,100%.
10. Dogecoin (DOGE)
- Market cap: $8 billion
Famously created in 2013 as a joke, Dogecoin quickly gained popularity as a cryptocurrency owing to a passionate community and clever memes. Dogecoins may be manufactured in an unlimited amount, unlike many other cryptocurrencies, making the currency vulnerable to depreciation as supply rises.
In 2017, Dogecoin cost $0.0002. Its price reached $0.065, up about 32,400 percent, on July 1, 2022.
Market caps and prices are current as of July 1, 2022, according to coinmarketcap.com.