10 Alternative cryptocurrency to Bitcoin to watch in 2021

top 10 Alternative cryptocurrency to Bitcoin you have to watch in 2021, Best crypto to invest in 2021.

 Bitcoin is reaching new heights. But other cryptocurrency may also emerge in less dramatic ways. The ones that emerge will have a simple, tangible utility for their target audience. Here are 10 "altcoins" to watch, based on five criteria.

[feature] 10 Alternative Cryptocurrencies to Bitcoin


Bitcoin's value is skyrocketing. In the spotlight, especially with large corporations taking a keen interest in it, it almost makes you forget that there are more than 2,500 cryptocurrencies.

This world, somewhat apart, is effervescent. But make no mistake about it. For those who wish to invest in them, cryptoassets are among the riskiest mediums. Highly speculative, their high volatility can lead to the total loss of the invested capital. As with any investment, one should refrain from investing blindly, or only motivated because others have chosen to bet money on it.

The universe that carries the crypto-currencies is complex to understand, because it is inseparable from the new computer technologies and "blockchains". But one thing is certain: the ones that emerge will have a simple and concrete use for the public they target. It will not be necessary to delve into technical details to understand what they can bring to everyday life.

How to estimate the potential of a cryptocurrency?

cryptocurrency of importance can be classified into 2 main families. Those that have the ambition to become only a currency of exchange, and those that serve primarily as a transaction tool in one or more blockchains.

To try to evaluate the potential of the main alternative cryptocurrency to Bitcoins, 5 criteria can be examined:
- Usefulness: what are the concrete applications of the cryptocurrency, are there outlets, does it meet a need?
- Security: is the technology used by the cryptocurrency reliable and scalable?
- The extent of its network and the degree of decentralization: who are the actors who validate the transactions and what are the rules?
- Credibility: how is it perceived from the outside? Does it interest recognized players who do not belong to the world of blockchain or cryptocurrency?
- Its notoriety: is it already known to its target audience?

According to these criteria, here are 10 crypto-currencies whose evolution is to be followed in 2021.

Cryptocurrencies that want to establish themselves as a currency of exchange

In addition to the 5 criteria mentioned above, the potential of these crypto-currencies is strongly linked to the upcoming evolution of legislation around the world. Indeed, they are likely to come up against the tightening of rules in many countries, and the creation of digital currencies by the central banks* of the various states.

Litecoin (LTC): the oldest alternative cryptocurrency

Created in 2011 by Charlie Lee, a former Google employee, Litecoin was the first alternative cryptocurrency to Bitcoin (now referred to as "altcoins"). It operates on a model close to that of the star cryptocurrency. Its history means that it has a very extensive network. It has also demonstrated the security of its transactions.

Litecoin also has good credibility, with a large number of exchange platforms and some merchants starting to accept it as payment.

Once all the planned tokens are issued, there should be 4 times more Litecoin in circulation than Bitcoins. But its development is still quite slow, which could cause it to fall behind other cryptocurrencies technically.

Project launch: 2011

Highest price: 292 euros in December 2017

Lowest price in 1 year: 34 euros in March 2020

Capitalization: nearly 10 billion euros in March 2021


The Dash (DASH): the search for simplicity of use

Dash (a contraction of "digital cash") has set itself the goal of becoming an exchange currency that is as practical and easy to use as cash or Paypal.

One of the main uses of the Dash is to send money around the world. Other uses could follow, such as paying for products or services, online trading...

Launched under the name "Darkcoin", its founders wanted to distinguish the cryptocurrency from Bitcoin by making transactions anonymous. It was then suspected of being intended to finance illicit activities. Since then, it has gained more notoriety, thanks to its simple model and the ability to send money confidentially and instantly at low cost. But its degree of centralization is still fairly criticized.


Launch: 2014

Highest price: 1327 euros in December 2017

Lowest price in 1 year: 58 euros in March 2020

Capitalization: nearly 3.3 billion euros in March 2021


Monero (XMR): untraceable transactions

Monero is also a cryptocurrency for which anonymity is the watchword. Its system makes transactions untraceable: it is impossible to know the identity of those who have made an exchange, nor the amount involved. This spirit of "fungible" assets is the opposite of Bitcoin.

One of Monero's strengths lies in its highly decentralized system and large network. But the confidentiality of transactions makes it opaque. Critics point to the cryptocurrency's possible links to illegal businesses and the dark web.

In the future, "privacy coins" could be banned in several countries, in order to avoid the financing of reprehensible activities.


Launch: 2014

Highest price: 353 euros in January 2018

Lowest price in 1 year: 41.2 euros in March 2020

Capitalization: €1.6 billion in March 2021


NB: Other cryptocurrency are positioning themselves in the anonymity niche, such as Zcash (ZEC) or Zcoin. Many have been the subject of controversy (hacking, funding of illicit markets...).

Tether (USDT): the stablecoin that's still worth $1

Tether is a rather unique cryptocurrency: issued on several blockchains (including Ethereum and EOS), it is backed by the value of the US dollar, making it the first "stablecoin". While cryptocurrencies have the characteristic of being volatile, the price of Tether is always very close to 1 dollar.


This sort of "parity" gives it a usefulness for holders of other crypto-currencies. For example, it is used to convert gains made on other cryptoassets, while avoiding the need to convert them into official currency (into "fiat currency", according to the jargon).

But this cryptocurrency is lacking in decentralization. Its directions depend heavily on the decisions of the issuing company, which can, for example, unilaterally choose to freeze an account. It is appropriate to wonder what would happen if this one came to put the key under the door... The detractors of this cryptocurrency also blame the company Tether a certain lack of transparency. The company has also had problems with the U.S. justice about illegal use of funds, and would not have sufficient reserves for the amount of transactions made.

Another weakness: the status of "stablecoin", i.e. a cryptocurrency backed by an official currency, puts Tether at risk. Legislation remains rather vague everywhere, and it is not excluded that this type of cryptocurrency will be formally banned in the near future. This topic is particularly under the spotlight because of the Diem project of Facebook. This project has provoked an outcry from many states, which fear that their monetary sovereignty will be weakened.


Launch: 2014

Price: indexed to the U.S. dollar, historically around $1

Capitalization: nearly 34 billion euros in March 2021

Cryptocurrencies as instruments of a system

If some of them also want to impose themselves as currencies of exchange in everyday life, these cryptocurrencies are mostly used, to date, to facilitate the exchanges of the users of their blockchain.

Ether (ETH), on Ethereum: a solid network that will have to evolve

Created in 2014 by Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum is a blockchain intended for the development of decentralized applications (the "Dapps"). Ether is the cryptocurrency that serves as a means of payment.

For example, CryptoKitties is a video game that was developed on Ethereum. It allows players to buy, breed and sell virtual kittens, the currency of exchange being Ether (ETH). But gaming activities are far from being the only ones on the blockchain.

Ethereum allows the editing of "smart contracts". These "smart contracts" are designed to set the rules of a contract, and then automatically execute it once the conditions are met by certifying each step. A rather practical process when transferring assets. "The program runs the code and if it automatically validates a condition, it determines whether the asset should be sent to one person or returned to another, or whether it should be paid back immediately to the person who issued it, or a combination of all of these," the founder explained at a Blockchain Summit.

Ethereum is a strong and secure network that has managed to prove itself over the years. However, the value of Ether is also highly dependent on the underlying technology. However, one of the negative points raised by specialists concerns the limitation of its transaction processing capabilities. The improvement of the technology is necessary to avoid that Ethereum loses its advantage.

Launch: 2015
Highest price: 1574 euros in February 2021
Lowest price in 1 year: 116 euros in March 2020
Capitalization: 153 billion euros in March 2021

The Tez (XTZ), on Tezos: the French blockchain adopted by big names

Tezos a blockchain whose protocol was devised by the French Arthur and Kathleen Breitman in 2014. In the same way as Ethereum, it allows the creation of "smart contracts" and the deployment of decentralized applications. Tez (XTZ), its cryptocurrency, is mostly used to pay for network and application usage.

Tezos relies on a secure programming language, and its scalable structure avoids the problems of updating the protocol, a problem encountered by Ethereum, for example.

But its big advantage is the trust placed in it by a growing number of major players. In 2019, the Gendarmerie Nationale's Centre de Lutte contre les Criminalités Numériques (C3N) selected Tezos to place orders for cryptocurrency payments from funds allocated by Europol. A year later, La blockchain was selected by Société Générale to help develop a digital euro project. Internationally, an American management company used Tezos to "tokenize" real estate worth $300 million. One of EDF's subsidiaries has also joined the network as a transaction "validator".

Still, its deployment is less than Ethereum's, and its system seems more sensitive to the concentration of power and decisions.

Launch: 2018
Highest price: 4.23 euros in February 2021
Lowest price in 1 year: 1.24 euros in March 2020
Capitalization: nearly 2.5 billion euros in March 2021


EOS: few applications at this stage

EOS is a blockchain also designed to develop decentralized applications. It is known for having been the subject of the largest ICO (cryptocurrency fundraising) in 2018, which allowed it to raise $4 billion.

Its goals are to simplify the technology as much as possible, and to establish itself thanks to its ease of use, free transactions, and its ability to support millions of users simultaneously, among other things.

EOS has big ambitions. But for the moment, the applications remain few and concentrated on video games and gambling. Criticism is also levelled at its centralization, lack of privacy for its users and flaws discovered in its computer code.

Launch: 2018
Highest price: 17 euros in April 2018
Lowest since: 1.94 euros in April 2020
Capitalization: nearly 3 billion euros in March 2021

ADA, on Cardano: ambition but a blockchain that needs to prove itself

Cardano is a blockchain created by Charles Hoskinson, one of the co-founders of Ethereum. Still under development, it aims to create decentralized applications and smart contracts. Its cryptocurrency, named ADA, was created to serve as a means of payment, but not only.

Cardano would be developed according to a "scientific" method, each technology going through a research process that must be validated by peers. A system that is sometimes criticized for being too complex.

Often considered as a potential serious competitor of Ethereum, is more agile and fast, using a two-tier architecture. One dedicated to transactions made with the cryptocurrency ADA, the other for decentralized applications and smart contracts.

For the moment, the blockchain is not yet operational. Charles Hoskinson is very often on social networks to communicate on the potential of Cardano, which would interest at least "100 companies" and "millions of users". But critics of the project doubt the veracity of the founder's claims, since nothing concrete is yet visible. The evolution of ADA will depend on the adequacy between the declarations and the success of the project, which, if it is not really there, will severely damage the confidence of the public.

Launch: 2017
Highest price: 1.16 euros in March 2021
Lowest price in 1 year: 0.02 euros in March 2020
Capitalization: 30 billion euros in March 2021

The DOT, on PolkaDot: a project that wants to bring blockchains closer together

Launched in 2020 by Gavin Wood (also one of the co-founders of Ethereum), Polkadot is a blockchain project that wants to be scalable, and opening the possibility of connecting several blockchains, in order to promote communication and exchanges.

The associated cryptocurrency is the "DOT". In just a few months, the latter has risen to become one of the largest cryptocurrency capitalizations, to the surprise of everyone. Buoyed by the general rise of crypto-currencies, DOT has caught the attention of a major asset manager, who may add it to his investment products alongside other crypto-currencies. That's all it took to lend a little more credibility to the blockchain project that is generating interest, even if nothing is done yet.

Launch date: 2020
Highest price: 32.92 euros in March 2021
Lowest price in 1 year: 2.42 euros in August 2020
Capitalization: 23 billion euros in March 2021

Ripple (XRP): a solution used by banks

XRP is a cryptocurrency that is used on Ripplenet, an electronic payment platform based on a RTGS (real-time gross settlement system). The objective of this system, proposed by the company Ripple, is to offer an efficient alternative to the SWIFT network used by banks to send payment orders. Indeed, SWIFT implies a one-day delay between the sending and receiving of funds, while Ripple allows a transfer in a few seconds.

More than a crypto-currency, XRP acts as a "bridge" for exchange between values, and allows for fast and cheap international payments. These features are of particular interest to banks and large institutions, such as UBS, American Express or Crédit Agricole in France, which are already customers of the technology. However, the success of Ripple is not a decisive factor in the evolution of XRP, since it is able to publish other cryptocurrency that would be dedicated to its customers.

One of the main criticisms of XRP is that the cryptocurrency is highly centralized. Ripple issues the tokens and has broad power in "monetary policy". Few players validate transactions, and they are often institutional. Thus, those sending funds and those receiving them must trust each other.
Another issue raised is the legal vacuum regarding the status of XRP (and many other cryptoassets). The U.S. financial authority (the SEC) recently accused Ripple of making unauthorized sales of financial securities. The fault lies in the hybrid nature of this crypto currency.

Launch: 2012
Highest price: 3.18 euros in January 2018
Lowest price in 1 year: 0.14 euros in March 2020
Capitalization: 19 billion euros in March 2021

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