The exponential growth and acceptance of digital currencies into the real world has created a lot of dramas, applications, and controversies that have attracted the world’s attention — especially in 2013 when its popularity spread like wildfire.
Fast forward to 2018, when the total market cap of digital currencies exceeded $200 billion. New traders, investors and crypto enthusiasts couldn’t resist diving into the blossoming cryptocurrency market.
While one too many studies focus on the future of Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple and many more, we feel it’s more valuable to compare the growth trends of the top 10 cryptocurrencies over the past five years so our readers can gain notable tips from their evolution.
How cryptocurrencies evolved over time
Since its birth in 2009, Bitcoin has dominated other cryptocurrencies. Over the years, its influence has led to the emergence of numerous altcoins whose trends, value and worth have been determined by its rule.
On May 26th 2013, there were only 15 cryptocurrencies listed on the coinmarketcap.com website. At that time, the total market cap was worth $1,548,982,054.
2013 was named the “Year of the Bitcoin” by Forbes. This was the year Bitcoin won the hearts of many hungry investors, making headlines at $1,242 per coin and forcing the price of gold down to a session low of $1,240 per ounce.
Its value skyrocketed, growing in value and making up rounds at discussion tables, online forums and seminars. This fast-paced development led to vastly contradictory viewpoints that perceived cryptocurrencies on one hand as a scam, or on the other as a fruitful and attractive project. The truth is, both stances are surprisingly convincing. Due to the high volatility of the cryptocurrency markets, there were erratic movements in value and opinion in the subsequent years.
As of September 2018, there are 1960 cryptocurrencies listed on coinmarketcap.com with a total market cap of $202,401,862,080.
Overview of the top 10 coins in 2013 and their state in 2018
The origin of Bitcoin dates back to January 3, 2009 when (then) anonymous founder Satoshi Nakamoto got a reward of 50 bitcoins for mining the genesis block of bitcoin. Experiencing ups and downs through the years, it is widely known for its extreme volatility, high risk and resistance to government and financial regulations. Bitcoin is an inspiration for the creation of many alternative cryptocurrencies — it was worth $1,477,901,418 in 2013 and yet remains the number one cryptocurrency in 2018 with a market cap of $112,051,104,549.
An open source peer-to-peer cryptocurrency that allows instant payments to anyone, anywhere in the world where money is accepted. It was founded by Google employee Charlie Lee on October 7, 2011. Incredibly, Litecoin made a 100% leap within 24 hours and it peaked at a $1 billion market cap later in November 2013. However, second place on this list has now been taken by a fast-rising digital currency, Ethereum. Currently Litecoin has a market cap of $3,269,333,322 and is ranked the seventh most popular cryptocurrency.
Namecoin is a distinct altcoin that thrived on the same proof-of-work algorithm as Bitcoin but stores its data separately within its own blockchain. It was engineered by Vinced on April 18, 2011, following an earlier BitDNS discussion on the Bitcointalk Forum in December 2010. While its market cap was valued at $5,306,810 in May 2013, in 2018 Namecoin is #155 in the list of cryptocurrencies at Coinmarketcap.com, and its capitalization is only $27,642,053. Jump to 2018, Ripple (XRP) makes the list of top three cryptocurrencies with a coin market cap of $11,140,897,192. It facilitates all tokens in the form of crypto, fiat or any valuable commodity.
Peercoin, which uses both proof-of-work and proof-of-stake systems, was the number 4 cryptocurrency on the list back in 2013. It was created to stand as the most secure digital currency with the lowest cost, whilst gifting users 1% yearly PPC return for strengthening their peer-to-peer network via mining. The fourth most popular cryptocurrency coin is now Bitcoin Cash. It was introduced in August 2017 so as to level up the amount of transaction that can be processed. Its market cap stands at $7,713,849,846.
Novacoin declared unique block generation features that support separated target limits. Developed and launched in 2013 by Balthazar, it made its way into the top five cryptocurrencies in 2013 with a market cap worth $1,198,172. However, today this project is practically dead (it is ranked in #434 position by CointMarketCap) and there are signs that flag it as a ‘scamcoin’. The new fifth most popular crypto coin is EOS, launched in June 2018 after a 12-month token sale span. It has rapidly grown to occupy its position on the list with a $4,841,634,744 market cap value.
Unlike Bitcoin, Terracoin was developed with a blockchain (in 2012) which should support improved security and faster transaction processing. As of May 2013, it had a coin market cap of $919,126. In July the same year, the coin was hacked and its reputation subsequently destroyed. Attackers managed to skyrocket the network’s hash rate and take full control of it. Now Terracoin is nowhere close to its glory days (#680 at CointMarketCap). Today Stellar is the number six coin with a market cap of $3,890,668,768.
Devcoin was introduced in 2011. It’s a project that channeled its efforts towards funding a community of developers, programmers, musicians, writers, and filmmakers. It gained more popularity in 2013, garnering a total market cap of $900,369, but slowly faded away to its death. As of September 2018, Litecoin, 2013’s number two, is still in the race for the top 10, sitting comfortably at the seventh position with a coin market cap of $3,248,078,351.
Freicoin went after Satoshi Nakamoto’s model of recording — the proof-of-work blockchain adopted in creating Bitcoin. The project had an original model of mandatory coin redistribution across the network. Freicoin earned a $669,208 market cap in 2013 but does not show any life in 2018. Its eighth position has been taken by a controversial ‘stablecoin’ cryptocurrency Tether, which has a market cap of $2,758,241,337.
Feathercoin started out as an upgraded version of Bitcoin, stemming from Litecoin and sharing the same decentralized cryptocurrency blockchain. Four months after its introduction in 2013, Feathercoin reached a $658,825 market cap. Now things are not that great for the project as it is sitting at #314 in CoinMarketCap’s ratings with a $10,771,187 market cap. As of September 2018, the new #9 coin is an open-source cryptocurrency called Monero. Its market cap is $1,918,364,269.
Like the Feathercoin, CHNcoin is based on Litecoin. With a market cap of $367,573, CHNcoin made the list of top 10 cryptocurrencies in May 2013. The project is now long dead. Today the #10 cryptocurrency is Cardano which hopes to rid the blockchain industry of scalability, sustainability and interoperability problems. It is worth $1,775,936,145 of the total market share.
Image: Top cryptocurrencies by their Market Cap in 2018
Although most of the top 10 cryptocurrencies in 2013 raised a lot of hype, unfortunately most of them didn’t merit making the list in 2018. Cryptocurrencies have an unhealthy relationship with FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) and FOMO (fear of missing out). FUD implies negative notions about cryptocurrencies that are shared across forums and social media.
The future of cryptocurrencies is greatly affected by government regulations in different countries. Until the mass adoption of cryptocurrencies occurs, we will have to wait to see where the world stands.
The number of cryptocurrencies is constantly growing, and the market situation is changing rapidly. The list of top cryptocurrencies has changed multiple times in the course of the last couple of years, as well as the market capitalization or price of the most popular coins. The number and the speed of changes happening every day are hard to track and analyze manually which results in missed opportunities and investment mistakes.
In order to fight this problem and give crypto investors a solution that will help them in building high-performing and low-volatile portfolios, the Cryptoindex100 (CIX100) tool can be used. It is a fully automated index composed by a sophisticated AI-based algorithm called Zorax. To build its own index of 100 best-performing cryptocurrencies, it uses a set of neural networks to analyze data from multiple sources (crypto exchanges etc.) about coin prices, trades and other parameters such as sentiment data.
Using this index as a benchmark allows traders to reduce volatility and risk in their portfolios, showcasing the most promising coins by analyzing thousands of trades and signals, based on more than 200 factors, every second.