Litecoin (LTC) has captured the attention of everyone as it value surged in 2017 increasing by over 7000% in 2017 alone compared to bitcoin’s 1700%. More merchants are beginning to adopt Litecoin for exchanges from foodstuffs to Mercedes Benz cars. It is seeing more adoption particularly because of its speed in transaction confirmation. It is currently holding the 6th place in coin market cap coming behind bitcoin, Ethereum and bitcoin cash, ripple and Cardano with a market capitalization of approx. 12.9 billion USD.
Litecoin is a cryptocurrency that is very similar to bitcoin. It can be seen an improved bitcoin. If you understand what bitcoin is and how it functions, then a few highlights on the differences between these two crypto-coins will give you a perfect knowledge of what Litecoin is. If you don’t know what bitcoin is, I suggest you read about then come back here to continue.
Litecoin can be said to be the younger brother of bitcoin. If we assume Bitcoin to be gold then Litecoin is silver. it is not really a new cryptocurrency though as it was created by Charles Lee in 2011 about two years after Bitcoin.
Unlike bitcoin’s creator Satoshi Nakamoto whose identity is not known, Charles Lee is an engineer that has worked for Microsoft, Google and Coinbase. Lee is a bitcoin enthusiast he not only followed the progress of bitcoin but used it from its inception to learn more about the idea behind it. He found a way to improve the technology behind bitcoin such as the speed, number of coins, security, mining process and transaction cost, this led him to create Litecoin.
What are Litecoins?
Litecoin is a cryptocurrency that is similar to other cryptocurrencies in some key few area; it is built on the blockchain principle, it is decentralized i.e. it is not owned or controlled by any government, organization or individual not even the creator. with this cryptocurrency, individuals or businesses can transfer funds directly between one another at super speed without passing through the banks of payment processors.
How are Litecoins Created?
Litecoins are generated/created through a process called mining. The total number of Litecoin that can ever be mined is 84 million LTC. Unlike bitcoins mining which is power intensive (SHA-256 algorithm) and that are mined with ASICs (1 ASIC is 10x faster than 500 supercomputers working together), Litecoin mining is memory intensive (S-crypt algorithm) and are mined with GPU or a personal computer with a large RAM size.
Litecoin Vs Bitcoin
|Coin Limit||84 million||21 million
|Transaction Time||2.5 minutes||10 minutes
|Creator||Charles Lee||Satoshi Nakamoto (Unknown)
|Creation Date||October 7th, 2011||January 3rd, 2009
|Market Cap||$12 billion ||$226 billion
|Mining||Memory intensive||Processor Intensive
One of the key advantages of Litecoin over bitcoin is its speed. It is four times faster. It takes 2.5 mins to confirm each LTC transaction while that of bitcoins is not less than 10 mins. With this, Litecoin network able to handle more transactions than the bitcoin network. also making it technically/practically impossible to forge a Litecoin. You save money when sending Litecoin as it is much cheaper to send as compared to bitcoins. only 21 million BTC can ever be mined while that of Litecoin is 84 million LTC.
It is worthy to note that cryptocurrency transactions are instant It is their transaction confirmation that takes time.
Litecoin Wallet: Where can I store my Litecoins?
Litecoins are stored in Litecoin wallets. The wallet can be a cold wallet (hardware wallet) or hot wallet (online wallet). You can purchase hardware wallets from companies like Trezor and Ledger. They are the safest kind of wallet because they are offline and not hackable. Hot wallets are online wallets provided by some exchange. Some reputable Litecoin wallet providers include
- Coinbase: Coinbase provides wallet for Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin.
- Coinomi: this is a mobile app downloadable from PlayStore. Coinomi provides wallet for over 270 cryptocurrencies including Litecoin.
- Exodus: Exodus provides wallet for 19 cryptocurrencies including Litecoin
- Jaxx: Jaxx supports wallet for over 12 cryptocurrencies including Litecoin
- You can also hold your Litecoin in trading platforms like Bittrex.com although it is not adviceable unless you are trading.
How to Buy Litecoin Instantly and reliably.
There are two methods of buying Litecoin;
- you can buy LTC directly with your fiat money like the USD or Naira or
- you can buy BTC with your fiat money and convert it to LTC.
Some exchange that allows a user to buy Litecoin directly with fiat include;
Coinbase is the leading cryptocurrency exchange in the world. A user can buy Litecoin on this platform with their Debit/Credit Card. Anyone from around the world can create a Coinbase account and use the Litecoin wallet. However, buying Litecoin directly with fiat money is only available to users from the 33 Coinbase supported countries most of which are North American and European countries. This means that user from Nigeria, for example, cannot buy Litecoin on Coinbase.
Buy Litecoin on Coinbase
Bitpanda is an Austrian based company that provides User from Europe a platform to buy cryptocurrencies such as Litecoin, Bitcoin, Ripple, Bitcoincash, Ethereum and Dashcoin.
Buy Litecoin on BitPanda
This is a top Nigerian Cryptocurrency exchange. It has its office in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. Users can buy Litecoin and 6 other cryptocurrencies on this platform.
Buy Litecoin on Ngexchanger
Instantgoldng has been around for 10 years now. They started with the exchange of digital currency like Netteller and Perfect Money but has since then expanded to exchange Litecoin and 3 other cryptocurrencies. They have their office in Lagos and Port Harcourt Nigeria.
Buy Litecoin on Instantgoldng
Buy Litecoin with Bitcoins
Other methods of buying Litecoin is to buy bitcoin from your favourite bitcoin exchange such as Luno and Remitano and exchange it for Litecoin platforms such as Coinomi and Changelly.
Where can I spend my Litecoin?
The number of merchants around the world that accepts Litecoin for the exchange of goods and services is on the increase. You can practically live a day to day life spending only Litecoins. Click here to see the list of merchants that accept Litecoins
What does the future hold for Litecoin?
Seeing the advantages of Litecoin over bitcoin, people have asked if Litecoin would eventually become more powerful than bitcoin. Anything is possible but I don’t see it happening at least not anytime soon. Bitcoin is the first cryptocurrency, it would be really difficult for any other cryptocurrency to outrank it. It would become even more difficult if the Lightning Network (LN) is implemented in the bitcoin technology. Secondly, Charles Lee although does not control the Litecoin network never intended Litecoin to compete with bitcoin but rather to complement it.
The Litecoin community is on a campaign to implement SegWit in its network. Segwit when implementation will make LN implementable in the Litecoin Blockchain. With LN implemented in the Bitcoin blockchain and the Litecoin Blockchain, a customer can buy a product from a store that accepts the only bitcoin and pay with Litecoin. His Litecoin will instantly be converted to Bitcoin and received by the store.
Litecoin, on the other hand, has a strong contender; Ripple XPR.
To get more info, you can check out the following sites
- Litecoin.org – official page
- litecointalk.org – official forum