Best Cryptocurrency: 9 Altcoins
To Watch Out For in 2018

So, you heard about Bitcoin, you witnessed all the hype and, you even watched its price soar as you gritted your teeth, almost to hit $20k. Deep down, you wish you had listened to that ‘crazy’ friend of yours who tried to convince you to invest in the digital coin when it was still in its infancy stage.  Now, more than ever, cryptocurrencies have your undivided attention. After all, a lot of money is flowing in the crypto space.

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Now that you are into cryptos, you are probably looking for a reliable crypto project to put money into, apart from Bitcoin. If you don't know how Bitcoin works, read our comprehensive guideline.

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Virtual cryptocurrency - there are over 1000 alternative coins out there

As a ‘noob’ investor, perhaps the biggest challenge is deciding where to put your money, particularly because they are over 1000 alternative coins out there.  You don’t want to put your money on a crypto project just because of that hype about how it will ‘moon’ in 2018 – there is much more to it.  To name a few; you have to think about the technology behind the project; if the coin has real-world application; whether the team involved is active; and it has a clear roadmap.

​Keep reading through this guide to learn about nine alternative digital coins to invest in, plus where to buy them and which wallets to use.

3 Best Altcoins We Recommend

1. Ethereum (ETH)

We can describe Ethereum as “programmable contracts and money.” ETH provides an environment where enterprises can use its blockchain to write smart contracts, build DApps and ICOs, raise funds without a third party and even perform democratic processes. Already, there are over 900 DApps built on Ethereum blockchain.

The cryptocurrency has recorded a marvelous track record, rising from $0.95 to $8.96 in one year. By the first day of 2018, ETH price had surged to $772.43. It did not stop there: its price crossed $1000 mark, a figure that would later spike to $1347 within just a few days.

ethereum price

The price of ETH as of January 15th 2018.

Had you invested in ETH early 2016 when its price was around $772, you would have made over $10,000 in profits, assuming you were to sell your coins early this year.

IOTA has a dedicated, well-organized management in place – if you wish to know anything about the ETH project, the developers can answer any question you may have.  On top of that, the team has laid down a proper roadmap for the project, and its community is substantially growing.

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Even Steven Nerayoff, the co-founder, believes the value of ETH could double or triple this year.

Here is a video explaining why Ethereum will rise higher

Best Exchanges To Buy Ethereum:

Best cryptocurrency wallets to keep Ethereum


2. Litecoin (LTC)

Another altcoin on the rise is Litecoin. It appeals to many people because it’s fast when making transactions; payments on the Litecoin network take less time to be confirmed compared to bitcoin.

There are reasons to believe that this altcoin Also, it has a high likelihood of being adopted many people, especially in 2018.

Litecoin is built on blockchain technology just like Bitcoin but its network is more efficient, faster and secure. The Bitcoin network takes at least 9 minutes to confirm a transaction whereas, with Litecoin, the confirmation time takes roughly 2.5 minutes. Because transactions take less time to process on the Litecoin network, it can handle high volume transactions, and faster. People who want to trade altcoins prefer to use LTC to move money from one exchange to another because its speed and the fees are incredibly low compared to BTC.

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A price chart showing the performance of LTC between Jan 2017 and Jan 2018.

As more businesses begin to use LTC because of the advantage it has when making transactions, my wild guess is that this project will skyrocket once big-fish e-commerce players adopt it. Already, e-commerce players like Bitcoin.shop, AllThingsLuxury, BTCTrip, and platforms like Bankex accept payments in LTC. These are just several examples.

The Best cryptocurrency to mine

Compared to Bitcoin, it’s easier to mine LTC because it uses a different algorithm from Bitcoin; this means as it gets harder to mine Bitcoin, miners may shift to LTC because it’s simpler to mine; should this happen, it translates to more value for the digital currency.

Growth of LTC

Already, Litecoin had managed to attain a market cap of over $12 billion as of early 2018, an indication that the crypto coin is steadily growing. According to Coinbase, in 2017 alone, Litecoin’s value went up by 5363%, almost x53 what it was worth at the beginning of the year. $100 invested in Litecoin at the beginning of 2017 would have translated to over $5k in one year time.

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Charlie Lee, Founder of Litecoin tweets about the increasing value of LTC.

Best exchanges to buy Litecoin

Best wallets to store LTC


3. Monero (XMR)

Monero is a crowd-funded, open source project just like Bitcoin but it uses a different code from BTC. The project focuses on providing private digital cash; it guarantees privacy and security of funds when sending and receiving money. It’s superior to Bitcoin when it comes to privacy, and even many fanatics refer to the coin as the “King of privacy.”

The cryptocurrency offers untraceable payments, stealth addresses, private transactions and it is fungible. Then, the technology behind it is just splendid, not to mention it is backed by a dedicated team of developers. So far, the leading team consists of seven developers, but only two of them are known – Riccardo Spagni and David Latapei – the rest are anonymous. You can check out this definitive guide; it will shed more light on Monero.

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A chart showing the price performance of Monero

For the time Monero has been around, the project has gained tremendous recognition, especially in the dark web because it provides untraceable payments.  That’s why it’s superior to Bitcoin when it comes to privacy.  With Bitcoin, the transactions are traceable, and they are not anonymous.

Because it uses proof of Work (POW) algorithm, it is possible to mine Monero. Its POW algorithm is called cryptonote, and it can be mined with both CPUs and GPUs. Still, because of its unique trait of being used in the dark web, the crypto-coin is yet to hit the mainstream.

Even John McAfee, the founder of McAfee and MGT Capital Investments, believes Monero has outshined Bitcoin. Watch what McAfee had to say about cryptos and Monero:

Monero started the year 2017 at $13.58; by the time the year ended, its price was over $350; within the first few days of January 2018, the price had shot up to over $400. If you had invested $100 in Monero at the start of 2017, you would have made around $2600 by the end of year.

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The price of Monero as of jan 15th, 2018.

Where to buy XMR coins:

Wallets to use

Monero is still working on a having a hardware wallet on Ledger. 

Warning: The freewallet service for mobile is a scam.


4. Iota (MIOTA)

IOTA is simply a payment service on the Internet of Things (IoT) economy.  IOTA provides a platform where machines with sensor capability can interact together. Different from Bitcoin, IOTA uses a revolutionary technology known as Tangle - a blockless distributed ledger.

With this technology in place, transactions on IOTA network are fast and there no fees involved when making payments. Also, when it comes to handling mass transactions per second, it overpowers decentralized currencies like Bitcoin.

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The price of IOTA as of 15th January, 2018

Using IOTA, enterprises can create business models that enable people to make micro transactions.  You can expect that its value will increase as more businesses integrate it into their models.

If you still don’t get what IOTA is all about, watch the video below:

With over $10 billion in market capitalization and almost 3 billion coins in circulation, there is money to be made if this project stands the test of time.

The IOTA foundation has a solid team in place; it’s well-organized, active, and it has already laid down a roadmap for the project. IOTA has entered into several partnership deals, and there are plans to scale its network. You can follow the IOTA conversation on Reddit to learn more about the IOTA project’s roadmap for the year 2018 and even interact with the co-founders and network developers. The Reddit community has over 98k members.

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A post from an IOTA enthusiast on Facebook

Although we are yet to move to a world operating on devices that use sensor-technology, and the IOTA technology is still under development, there are several real-world projects.

Exchanges to buy MIOTA

You may have a hard time buying the IOTA coin, mainly because only one exchange accepts fiat currencies offers it, and that’s Bitfinex. At Bitfinex, you can pair MIOTA with the USD, EUR, BTC, or ETH.  The other exchange to get Miota is Binance, where you can pair MIOTA with BTC or ETH.

Check out this interesting thread on Reddit about getting Iota; you’ll get to see the exact steps to follow, from setting up your wallet, buying your ETH/BTC to exchanging for IOTA.

Top wallets to store your coins

5. NEO

You can think of NEO as the Chinese market Ethereum. Using the NEO project, you can create smart contracts and custom tokens, just like in Ethereum. Also, enterprises can automate storage and exchange digital contracts. Compared to BTC and ETH, NEO transactions are faster; while Ethereum can handle about 15 transactions per second, we are talking about 1,000 transactions per second with NEO.

The price of NEO was $0.14 during the first day of the year 2017.  Exactly one year later, the crypto-coin was going for $79, and it’s still on the rise – as of 15th January, it was at $176.

Chinese market Ethereum

The price of NEO as of Jan 15th 2018.

NEO made some progress after it rebranded from Antshares. At the time when the digital coin was known as Antshares, the team involved was shoddy at marketing; it did not seem to have a roadmap; and, the coin was yet to be adopted in the U.S.   

However, things turned around for the crypto-coin mid-2017, after it rebranded from ANS to NEO: partnerships began to roll in; it penetrated the Chinese Market; and, it even got dubbed the “Chinese Ethereum”. Now, NEO has widely grown, and already they are enterprises running on NEO’s blockchain. Among the top 100 projects in Cryptoland, two of them are NEO projects.

The team heading the project is dedicated, and it is growing by the day. Over the last 12 months, the digital coin has gained a massive following – about 60k members on Reddit.

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A conversation about NEO on Facebook

Because the project uses a Proof of Stake method, mining is not possible. However, through staking, you can earn NEO’s GAS token, the crypto fuel that controls the network.  Also, with NEO, it is hard to experience hard forks because it uses a consensus known as dBFT, a technology that prevents blockchain splits.

Exchanges to buy NEO from

  • Binance - Pair NEO with BTC, ETH, or USDT(Recommended) 
  • Bitfinex - Pair NEO with USD, BTC, or ETH
  • Bittrex - Pair NEO with BTC or USDT
  • Cryptopia - Pair NEO with BTC, DOGE or LTC

Wallet to use


6. OmiseGo (OMG)

OmiseGo is a project dedicated to helping financial institutions perform transactions across different fiat currencies and cryptocurrencies, a problem that’s plaguing international financial regulations. The OmiseGO project has real-world application in the Banking, Remittance, and exchange sector.

I expect OmiseGo to shake things up once enterprises begin to use its Software Development Kit (SDK), an environment that allows payment services to create apps and run them on the OMG network.

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The price of OMG as of 15th January 2018

Omisego is an esteemed company with over 70 members, and they hope to add new talent as the project expands and gains more value. Best believe it: the company has some real talent on board. Omise, the parent company of OMG, has proven track record in the industry.

Behind the scenes, we have characters like Vitalik, a lead developer of Ethereum; Joseph Poon, Lightning Net lead; Dr.Gavin Wood, lead at ETH and Parity; Roger Ver and Vlad Zamir, Casper/ETH lead. In fact, Vitalik and Poon co-authored its whitepaper.

No doubt, with such a fantastic team on board and some enterprises already incorporating Omisego into their ecosystem, the crypto-coin has bright future ahead. From the look of things, you will be a happy man soon should you decide to invest OMG.

Because OmiseGo is a Proof of Stake currency, OMG holders will receive revenue for staking their coins in a wallet. However, staking will begin once they release their full version wallet.

Where to buy OMG

  • Binance - Pair OMG with USD, OMG/USD; OMG/BTC; OMG/ETH (Recommended) 
  • Bitfinex - Pairs available are OMG/USD and OMG/BTC
  • Bittrex - Pairs available are OMG/USD and OMG/BTC
  • Crytopia - Pair OMG with BTC, DOGE or ETH
  • Poloniex - You can have OMG/BTC or OMG/ETH

Wallets to use

For now, you store OMG in wallets compatible with ECR20 tokens. These include:

OmiseGo are scheduled to release their SDK wallet that will allow you to stake your coins

It's expensive to exchange BTC for IOTA; that’s because one has to pay high fees when sending Bitcoin.


7. Vechain (VEN)

VeChain is one undervalued project, yet we can’t dispute that it has solid business fundamentals – it may not surprise many people to see the project come into the limelight. You can think of VeChain as Ethereum for business. This project combines the best parts of ETH technology with RFID and Internet of Things (IoT) devices to create an ecosystem where enterprises can host DApps.

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A chart showing the price curve of VEN between August 22, 2017 and January 14th 2018

The project’s mission is to prevent counterfeiting in business and simplify access to public records – this will allow transparency in information flow, high-speed value transfer and efficient collaboration in the business ecosystem. It has real-life applications in the fashion and luxury industry, food safety, car industry, supply chain industry and the Agriculture industry. 

VEN project is backed up by an incredibly strong team. Its founder, Sunny Lu, used to be the Chief Information Officer (CIO) of Louis Vuitton China. With years of experience fighting fake products in the industry, he can steer the project in the right direction, I believe.

Watch this terrific video about VeChain. It explains all you need to know about this crypto coin:

News out there is that PWC has partnered with VeChain; this is huge if you think about it considering that VEN will now tap on PWC’s client base, whose total revenue when combined almost matches that of the entire Fortune 500.  The PWC partnership is just one of them; VeChain has several million-dollar partnership projects under its belt.

It’s just a matter of time before VEN gets the recognition it deserves. There are plans to rebrand the project to VET and have it move to its blockchain, which may happen before the end of Q2 2018.
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VeChain announcement about rebranding in early 2018. Source: Twitter.

Unlike Bitcoin which uses Proof of Work, you cannot mine VEN; it uses Proof of Stake, which means you can earn passive income when you stake coins in a wallet. This will happen once THOR, the new token is generated.

Where to buy

Although it’s offered on many small exchanges; the most-reputable places to get VEN are Binance and Kucoin. At these exchanges, you can pair it with BTC or ETH.

Wallets to use


8. Golem (GNT)

Golem is an open-source, decentralized supercomputer that anyone around the globe can access. The project provides a market for utilizing idle computing power. For a while, Golem has maintained a low profile. Although it’s a promising project, mostly it’s left out during the mainstream crypto talk. However, I figure the project will go places with time.

The team behind the project aims to rent unused computing power to people around the world.  People will use the platform to do activities that need massive computing power, such as advanced calculations, big data analysis, Artificial Intelligence, video rendering, machine learning, to name just a few.  Also, software developers and authors can use the decentralized platform to distribute and monetize their software.

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The price of Golem crypto coin as of 15th Jan 2018.

Its management team has a vision for the project in 2018. In a nutshell, it plans to add more talent on board; scale up its core dev team; partner with potential software companies in the industry like Adobe; and integrate Brass technology into their network, probably by Q2 of this year. GNT team is quite active, and some of its members strive to answer questions about the project on Social Media platforms like Reddit, which apparently has about 17k members.

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A price chart of GNT between November, 2016 and January 2018.

Although you cannot mine the crypto-coin Golem, it’s possible to earn passive income whenever you rent out your computing power to requesters.

Credible exchanges to buy

  • Bitfinex - Pair GNT with USD, BTC or ETH (Recommended) 
  • Bittrex - Pair GNT with BTC or ETH
  • Ethfinex - Pairs available are GNT/USD and GNT/ETH
  • Poloniex - Pair GNT with ETH

Wallets to store the Golem crypto coin


9. Particl (PART)

Particl is a “privacy marketplace and chat”. The blockchain project focuses on privacy and security, providing an ecosystem for private chats, DApps, and private currency.  It’s the first privacy DApp built on Bitcoin that will enable a business to accept any crypto coin.

This crypto coin is undervalued despite being a project with a direction. However, the project will undoubtedly command significant publicity once enterprises start using its platform. PART seems like a viable coin if you are looking for a crypto coin that you can hold for long-term investment. If you wish to invest in Particl, get it while the price is still friendly, and ‘HODL’.

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The price of one particl as of 15th January 2018.

Particl has a fantabulous technology, it’s well-funded, and the team is always on track with the goals it has outlined.  Also, the people involved in the project are not newcomers in the cryptocurrency game- some team members have been major players in the field. Some of the developers are pioneers of crypto projects like the HTML5 wallet, Umbra graphical wallet, implementing of HD wallets, and the invention of ring signatures.

Rumor out there has it that already Particl has welcomed on board three advisors, two of whom own an exchange; one being the owner of Changelly and the other owns a renowned Korean exchange.

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The price curve of particl between July, 2017 and January, 2018

With such a talented team on the floor and a top-notch technology, I’m confident Particle will have its moment soon. Even if the crypto bubble happens, PART may just stand the test of time.

Watch this interview that features Joe Fisher, the project’s advisor; he give his reasons to invest in particl.

Where to buy particl

Buying PART is not always straightforward to people who want it, particularly because it’s listed on only three exchanges – Bittrex, Litebit, and Bit-z. The only pairs available in these exchanges are PART/BTC, apart from Litebit which has PART/EUR.  Also, there is speculation out there is that the coin may get listed on Changelly and Shapeshift, probably by Q1 of 2018.

Wallets to use

Because it’s a Proof of Stake currency, you can income by keeping your coins in a wallet.

For this purpose, you can use Particle.io

Conclusion

Now, that you have reached this far, you are probably feeling the urge to develop a cryptocurrency portfolio. As the saying Chinese proverb goes, “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago; the second best time is now”.

Before you plough money into a crypto project, be sure to do some more research. You don’t want to settle for a crypto coin because you fear missing out on the wave (FOMO). Additionally, you don’t want to invest your money in a useless project or a coin that’s overbought because it will face a serious correction in the future.  More importantly, beware of scams and phishing sites – they are everywhere.  To be on the safe side, read our article about fraud, scams, and risks that plague cryptocurrencies.

Best Cryptocurrency: 9 Altcoins To Watch Out For in 2018
4.8 (96.67%) 6 votes
Lincoln Ndirangu
 

Lincoln Ndirangu is a freelance copywriter based in Nairobi, Kenya. He is an ardent follower of cryptocurrencies and anything blockchain related: bitcoin, altcoins, smart contracts, DApps, ICOs, faucets, masternodes, and so on.

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