The cryptocurrency industry continues creating a buzz online. On any tech or investment forum you visit, there has to be mention of cryptocurrencies. The Market Capitalization of all cryptocurrencies around September 2018 was $209.2 Billion. Experts project the cryptocurrency market to be worth US$6702.1 million by the end of 2025.
While a lot of focus has been on Bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, powerful alternatives have emerged. Top among these altcoins (alternative cryptocurrencies) is Ether.
Now, Ethereum is a platform on which Ether (ETH) the popular digital cryptocurrency runs. However, most users interchange the terms. This is the second most popular cryptocurrency after Bitcoin with a market capitalization of $33,343,121,274 as of July 2019.
When people talk of Ethereum, they are mostly referring to the digital currency and not the platform. Ethereum is the world’s first general-purpose blockchain platform and went live on July 30, 2015.
This quick guide explores Ethereum in details to help get you started. Whether you are a tech developer, ETH potential owner, digital currency or you need more information on the latest technology, you are in the right place.
Ethereum In Details
Block-chain technology has seen the development of some incredible innovations. Ethereum is one of the tech platforms spawned by cutting-edge blockchain technology. It is the world’s leading programmable blockchain.
This is a block-chain based open-source distributed computed platform. This platform works on the idea of decentralized applications to give users control. One of the most notable features of this platform is its smart contract functionality.
The native cryptocurrency built on Ethereum is popularly known as Ether (ETH). This is digital money which most people now refer to as Ethereum.
Ethereum’s journey is short but remarkable:
i. In November 2013, Vitalik Buterin announced the Ethereum whitepaper.
ii. In January 2014, the development of the blockchain platform started with the original team of Vitalik Buterin, Anthony Di Iorio, Mihai Alisie, and Charles Hoskinson.
iii. In August 2014, the first Ethereum ICO closed with $18.4 million realized.
iv. In July 2015, a frontier test Ethereum hit the market.
Bitcoin Vs Ethereum
It is important to note the main difference between Bitcoin and Ethereum. While both leverage blockchain technology, they differ in purpose and capability.
Bitcoin sole focus in on the peer to peer electronic cash system. On the other hand, Ethereum offers a platform for developers to build and deploy decentralized applications.
If you do some research on Ethereum, you will most likely come across the smart contract script. This is a computer code that facilitates the exchange of property, content, money, shares, or anything of value.
On the blockchain platform, a smart contract automatically executes when if conditions are right.
Ethereum uses smart contract because there’s no possibility of downtime, fraud, censorship, or third-party interference.
Unlike other blockchains that suffer limitations, Ethereum equips developers to build amazing applications. It is now easier and faster to build and deploy decentralized applications.
Uses of Ethereum (ETH)
For most people researching Ethereum, their main interest is in the digital currency, ether (ETH). This cryptocurrency continues growing with active addresses rising 106% compared to 26% for Bitcoin.
The ETH price recently broke the $220 resistance level against the US Dollar and even tested the $230 zone. If you want to invest or use Ethereum, it is important to stay up-to-date with Ethereum news online. You will always make an informed choice when you know the latest news in the cryptocurrency world.
ETH is digital money, and like any currency, you can use it to complete transactions online. A new industry in trading of cryptocurrencies has also emerged.
This is a great store of value as it is scarce. It is decentralized with no single individual or government having control. People trading online or making payments can do so safely and anonymously. Unlike ordinary currencies, it is faster and more convenient to complete transactions when using this digital currency.
Ethereum currency is also used inside the Ethereum blockchain to run applications. The Ethereum community is the largest and most active blockchain community in the world.
From crypto-economic researchers, mining organization, core protocol developers, app developers or ordinary users, these people are always available to answer any questions you might have on this technology.
To start using ETH currency, you have to buy it. The process involves the creation of an account, verifying the account (upload all the regulatory stuff), exchange to deposit USD into the exchange of your choice, buy RTH using the money in your wallet.
There’s so much to learn about Ethereum, blockchain and altcoins. You have to stay abreast of everything happening in the fast-paced world of cryptocurrencies. This helps you become a better trader and user of this digital currency.
Carolyn Coley is a blockchain reporter. She joined Smartereum after graduating from UC Berkeley in 2018.