Now that Halloween’s behind us, it is officially time to start preparing for the holiday season! Seeing as most cryptocurrencies peak in value around the start of the new year, now is probably the best time to cozy up with a cup of joe and spend a couple of hours researching. To get started, read this list of three altcoins that could very well be among the top contenders to mark 2019.
Which Altcoins Will be Hot in 2019: Cardano (ADA)
Cardano is a distributed computing / smart contract platform that recently celebrated its first year anniversary — and it seems to have a bright future ahead of itself with many anniversaries to come. It is the product of Input Output Hong Kong (IOHK) – a blockchain engineering and development company led by Charles Hoskinson, who’s known to the wider audience as the co-founder and ex-CEO of Ethereum.
As a third generation cryptocurrency, Cardano aims to improve upon the scaling issues of its first and second generation predecessors (Bitcoin and Ethereum respectively).
Here’s why it made our list of top coins to zero in on in 2019:
- Cardano has been in the works since 2015. The team behind it developed the platform extensively for more than two years before finally releasing it on September 29, 2017. This shows patient and thorough development, seeing as the development team could’ve easily gone with the flashy whitepaper and unrealistic promises like thousands of its peers did, deliver on none of it, and eventually crash. The project hasn’t missed a beat in meeting the targets laid out in their roadmap.
Why Cardano: The philosophy behind the project > https://t.co/rdmQxnrWnr
— Cardano Foundation (@CardanoStiftung) September 29, 2017
- Cardano secured a spot among the top 10 cryptocurrencies on CoinMarketCap in under a year and is currently ranked #8. That’s pretty impressive for such a novel project!
- Cardano went with the testnet approach as opposed to mainnet. This means that they will implement an alternative blockchain on which users can test new features and enjoy the same properties and functionalities as they would in the Cardano production environment. The upside of this approach is that the team can learn from the users’ experience and build a stronger product without putting the community through the hassle of constant changes, updates and bug fixes that could result with them losing their ADA just by interacting with the platform.
- The Cardano team is developing support for multisignature transactions, and they will soon be available for HD wallets.
- Cardano uses a variation of the Proof-of-Stake protocol that is somewhat similar to Delegated Proof-of-Stake (dPoS) called Ouroboros. The algorithm was developed with the help of the University of Connecticut, University of Edinburgh and the Tokyo Institute of Technology. It is a piece of tech that’s been extensively peer-reviewed and is said to have “security properties […] comparable to those achieved by the bitcoin blockchain protocol.”
- As of October 29th, Trezor is undergoing final preparations to support Cardano on its Trezor Model T hardware wallet. Trezor have brought us the first hardware wallet to survive the test of time and become a community favorite, which means that once the Cardano integration is complete, this currency will be even closer to the wider audience. Cardano will soon be supported on another industry standard hardware wallet as well – the Ledger Nano S. Cardano users will be able to hold their coins offline and reap the benefits of this convenient and secure hardware wallet.
- A Cardano debit card is in the works, and you will be able to fill it with the ADA that you are holding in your crypto wallet. Once you’ve transferred your funds, they will then be automatically converted into the (local) currency of you choice and become available for spending, just like you would normally transact with a debit card.
All in all, Cardano seems to be a well-thought-out project with an experienced team that is careful and precise in bringing it to life. It is a serious rival to Ethereum — the two offer similar functionalities but Cardano takes the cake when it comes to scaling and efficiency.
This following year is packed with exciting events for Cardano which should really add to its value, which is why we recommend you keep an eye on it in the following months. Like most altcoins, Cardano is currently experiencing a decline in price. You can purchase this cryptocurrency for around $0.07.
Stellar is a blockchain-based, open-source, distributed payment infrastructure that facilitates multi-currency and asset transactions using its Lumens (XLM) crypto-asset as a bridge.
It is a hard fork of Ripple that was initially released on July 31st, 2014. In fact, it was Stellar and not Ripple that made our list because, even though both projects share similar technology, they have two key differences: a) Stellar is a decentralized currency while Ripple is centralized, and b) Stellar is geared towards individuals while Ripple is better suited for institutions.
So, without further ado, here’s why Stellar might be a notable market player in 2019:
- The Stellar protocol has multiple use cases. It is best suited and mainly intended for quick and efficient cross-border transactions, but it can also be used to host decentralized apps (dApps) and power decentralized exchanges (DEXs). Stellar has also become a viable alternative to Ethereum for ICO launching and token issuance.
- Stellar has managed to survive its fair share of bearish market slopes. Currently ranked #6 on CoinMarketCap, Stellar has a dedicated community that insulates the promising project from failure (nearly 100,000 readers on Reddit) and a good product-market fit.
- According to the 2018 roadmap, a Stellar – Lightning Network integration is scheduled for December 1 and just days ago Interstellar made an announcement that they’ve released Starlight – a software implementation that enables bi-directional payment channels on the Stellar network. Payment channels are off-chain networks that allow for two connected parties to perform multiple transactions without broadcasting them to the blockchain, thus providing a faster, cheaper, and more private alternative to traditional on-chain transacting; the only information that makes it on to the blockchain is the final balance of all connected parties once the payment channel is closed.
- While there haven’t been any noisy partnership announcements this year, Stellar did close 37 partners in 2017. Most notably, in October last year, Stellar partnered with tech giant IBM; less than a year later, in September of this year, IBM announced Blockchain World Wire (BWW) – a new “financial rail” that uses the Stellar protocol and blockchain technology to allow financial institutions to “clear and settle cross-border payments in seconds.” Seeing as IBM has taken a serious interest in Stellar — they must be doing something right!
- Due to various scams and compliance conflicts with existing regulations, the ICO market is experiencing great volatility. Enter security token offerings (STOs). They are similar to ICOs in that there is a crypto token offering made by a business to potential investors, except that ICOs are the sale of coins whilst STOs are the sale of securities. However, the most notable difference between the two is that STOs are registered with the SEC (U.S. Security and Exchange Commision), meaning that they are more compliant to regulations than ICOs are. Furthermore, ICOs have gotten a bad name over time; they’ve become synonymous with scams and the word itself has become dirty and tainted. These are some of the reasons why STOs are expected to grow in prominence — and Stellar is ready to make the most of it. In fact, Stellar-based security token offerings have been the weapon of choice of many companies ranging from start-ups to large corporations, specifically for the aforementioned reasons: compliance and reputation. Seeing as all transactions on the Stellar network are paid in Lumens (XLM), as STO adoption goes up — so will the value of Stellar, much like it was with ICOs and Ethereum in 2017.
These are all factors that should positively affect the adoption of Stellar in 2019.
The propitious currency is friends with some of the “big guys”, both in the private and the government sector. With such support from both ends on the spectrum, at least one thing is for certain: you won’t be the only one interested in Stellar’s success. XLM is currently trading at about $0.24.
Currently #30 on CoinMarketCap’s Top 100 Cryptocurrencies, the Basic Attention Token is the underdog of our list. It is an open-source, decentralized platform that is looking to improve digital advertising by introducing a new token of exchange that can be traded between users, advertisers and publishers.
Basically, it is a system based on rewards that are measured in the native currency; in the Basic Attention Token ecosystem, users (i.e. ad viewers) access the Internet via the Brave web browser and are compensated with BAT (an Ethereum-based token) for their literal attention.
They can then use these tokens to tip websites and content creators (somewhat similarly to Patreon) in order to improve their browsing experience. Advertisers achieve better targeting and, consequently, a higher ROI while the publishers’ decrease in inefficiency results with an increase in revenue. Sounds interesting?
Here’s why the Basic Attention Token deserves your attention in 2019:
Who owns your attention? Who owns your web browsing experience? Who gets paid? If not you, then you’re “product”.
Time to get paid.@Brave
— BrendanEich (@BrendanEich) April 8, 2016
- Even though BAT is not limited to the Brave web browser, Brave is still an integral part of the project; it blocks ads completely, but then allows users and publishers to opt into the ads of their own accord. It also serves as a diagnostic tool that assesses whether or not ad viewers are engaging and paying attention. Brave currently has over 4 million monthly active users and is expected to pass the 5 million mark by the end of this year.
- BAT seems to be committed to creating partnerships that will bring premium content closer to its users. This includes the partnership with the Dow Jones Media Group which is aimed to “experiment with blockchain-based technology in media and advertising” and with TownSquare Media – the owner of a large portfolio of music and entertainment-focused digital brands.
- The BAT platform is integrated with popular social media platforms such as YouTube and Twitch. This enables audiences to reward their favorite creators using Brave Payments. There are currently over 17,200 YouTube channels (HowToBasic, VICE and Funny Or Die to name a few) and numerous websites (CoinMarketCap, BitTorrent, Vimeo, The Guardian, Washington Post…) that are verified Brave publishers.
- According to the New York Times, ad downloads currently cost users a monthly average of $23 in mobile data. They also cause a decrease in battery life of 21%. Brave’s goal is to help the end user save on these expenses, all the while offering him to opt-in to the content that he wishes to see.
To sum up, BAT is the product of an exceptional team and a pioneer of this kind of blockchain-based advertising for their users. As a result of the ad blocking features, the Brave browser is much faster which will surely contribute to its adoption and, with that, the rise of BAT’s value. BAT is currently trading at $0.3.
Which Altcoins Will be Hot in 2019: Final thoughts
Today we are announcing that we’re exploring the addition of the following assets to Coinbase: Cardano (ADA), Basic Attention Token (BAT), Stellar Lumens (XLM), Zcash (ZEC) and 0x (ZRX). https://t.co/qoECyR0V1f
— Coinbase (@coinbase) July 13, 2018
On November 2, Coinbase announced that BAT is launching on Coinbase Pro (but not on Coinbase.com and Coinbase’s iOS/Android applications at the time of writing this article.)
Following the announcement, the price of the Basic Attention Token underwent a whopping 20% surge. Similar, though smaller increases in price can be noticed in both Cardano’s and Stellar’s price charts during the same time frame, probably due to the fact that Coinbase grouped these currencies together in the initial statement.
When it comes to long-term trends on nascent markets such as the cryptocurrency one, fundamental analysis trumps technical analysis and this is exactly why we chose to present you with the fundamentals of these 3 crypto projects rather than produce technical charts that have nearly zero chance of predicting the future price.
Our candidate altcoins have managed to keep afloat during tumultuous periods of market instability, damage to the industry’s reputation, massive investor losses and much more. Imagine, then, what their performance could be like when the market equalizes and altcoins as a whole have had time to recover from this bear run.
DISCLAIMER: This article is not intended to be financial advice. Any and all cryptocurrency investments should be done according to your own judgment and research.