Our world runs on the basic necessity called ‘money’. Whether we use cash currency, plastic money like credit cards or bank transfers, we all utilize money in one form or other for our daily needs.
Similarly, in recent years there is another form of money that is gaining popularity in the market. Known as the ‘Virtual Currency’, the concept was first introduced in 2010 by a pseudonym ‘Satoshi Nakamoto’ in the form of ‘Bitcoin’, a cryptocurrency.
Although Bitcoin is the first and the most popular crypto in the market, there are many other alternatives that are getting attention in the market. These alternatives of Bitcoin are also known as ‘altcoins’ and one of them is Litecoin.
Digital Silver of Cryptosphere
Introduced in 2011, Litecoin is a spin-off of Bitcoin. It is one of the early altcoins introduced in the cryptosphere. Just like other cryptocurrencies, it is also a decentralized form of currency that uses an open-source cryptography for peer to peer transfer of coins. LTC is also based on the blockchain technology. Litecoin is represented by LTC or Ł.
The creator of Litecoin is an Engineer Charlie Lee who was working with Google when he first introduced the idea of an alternative that is more scalable and a lighter version of Bitcoin. While Bitcoin is considered as Gold for many, suitable for long-term investment, Litecoin was considered as ‘Silver’ due to its affordability and use for everyday purposes. LTC was uploaded on the open-source client of Github on 7th October 2011 and the Litecoin Network went live 13th October the same year.
The Difference: Litecoin VS Bitcoin
Charlie Lee created Litecoin as a fork of Bitcoin but made it different on two factors.
First, he made sure that unlike Bitcoin which utilizes specialized mining hardware, Litecoin was more feasible for average consumers who can use consumer-grade hardware for mining it.
Second, he aimed to create a network that was faster and cheaper than Bitcoin. This was to make sure consumers can use it for smaller and day-to-day purposes.
However, both Bitcoin and Litecoin will be limited cryptos i.e. there is a limited quantity of 21 Million and 84 million respectively that both can be mined to.
The Mining Process: Litecoin:
Mining is the process of creating new cryptos and approving transactions on a blockchain network. The Litecoin mining process involves the creation of new Litecoins and verification of any litecoin transactions and uploading it on the blockchain.
Although based on Bitcoin, Litecoin utilizes the Scrypt Proof-of-Work mining algorithm as compared to Bitcoin’s SHA-256 algorithm. It is due to this Scrypt algorithm, that litecoin can be mined using consumer mining hardware than requiring a specialized one.
Scrypt algorithm was introduced as “s-crypt” algorithm and was pronounced as “Scrypt”. It is based on Bitcoin’s SHA-256 algorithm but the major difference lies in how the calculations take place. While Bitcoin’s algorithm runs calculations parallel to each other, Scrypt is more serialized in nature. This means that rather than conducting two or more transactions at the same time, the algorithm will serialize and process them one by one. This is why Scrypt is also known as “memory hard problem’. Here, the processing power is not an issue but the memory is. Doing five transactions simultaneously requires five times the memory and that is limited in the Scrypt algorithm.
Mining Speed of LTC
The average mining speed of a Litecoin is 2.5 mins as compared to Bitcoin’s speed of 10 mins. The feature is more suitable for day to day purchases where Bitcoin transactions may take up to 10 mins to process, Litecoin can be processed in only 2.5 mins.
Another major feature of this mining speed is the variation in mining rewards. With the time taken by miners being too small, there is an opportunity for more miners to mine and earn rewards.
To sum up, Litecoin is an altcoin that is faster and becoming more popular with miners and investors alike. Launched in 2011 as an alternative to Bitcoin, it utilizes the same algorithm with the added advantage of speed and scalability. Litecoin can be a great addition to your crypto portfolio and you can buy, sell or invest in the same on PCEX.