Bitcoin, the original cryptocurrency, is sort of like a reserve currency in the crypto world and fulfills a similar role in crypto trading as the US dollar does in the international oil trade. To get in and out of Altcoin positions, you need to purchase Bitcoin and deposit it to an exchange, and then trade it for the altcoin of your choice.
The market went from 100 million dollars at the beginning of the year to 700 million towards the end of the year. Bitcoin’s market dominance was seriously challenged and slipped from 65% to around 36.2% where it sits today.
All of this capital movement in and out of Bitcoin and Alts by traders drove Bitcoin’s fees to unprecedented highs. At one point it was $50 dollars per Bitcoin transaction, due to the bottlenecking of transaction throughput, because of the limited capacity of settling transactions on chain.
Bitcoin can only handle about 7-8 transactions per second on chain, and the transactions that are included in each block are decided by fees. You can pay a higher fee to have your transaction processed faster, but so can everyone else, and that drives up fees.
So today I want to take a look at the cryptos with the cheapest transaction fees.
#1 The Lightning Network
So fast and cheap it sent chills down my spine!
The lightning network is a layer two solution built on top of Bitcoin. The best way to describe the lightning network is a peer to peer payment processing layer using Bitcoin, which batch settles large quantities of the micro-transactions taking place on layer 2, as a single transaction on
chain to the underlying Bitcoin blockchain. Lightning is working on Bitcoin’s main net now, but still in beta, and not ready for the masses.
Block lattice for instant transactions with zero fees.
Nano, formerly known as Raiblocks, is a newer cryptocurrency, with almost instant transactions and zero fees. Nano is a Directed Acyclic Graph and has a blocklattice structure where each user has their own blockchain and uses a delegated proof of stake consensus algorithm. It’s more similar to IOTA’s Tangle, than anything else. The best part is Nano is already live, and it works!
Fast and cheap transactions, running a souped-up version of the Bitcoin codebase.
Digibyte was an early altcoin, based off of the Bitcoin codebase, with a few key tweaks. For example, there will be 21 billion DGB coins, as opposed to BTCs 21 million, and Digibyte has 15-second blocks as opposed to BTCs 10 minute block confirmation. Digibyte is extremely fast, and cheap, and transactions take 15 seconds to confirm. It has also been around since 2014, so it has a community and userbase dedicated to the project.
The so-called “Ethereum” of the Orient, stuns with speedy free transactions.
Neo is one of the most well-known cryptocurrencies, with a $4.9 billion marketcap. Formerly known as Antshares, Neo has been one of the most anticipated crypto platforms out of Asia. Neo utilizes a unique Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (DBFT) consensus algorithm for better scalability and throughput. Neo boasts 1000 transactions per second which can scale up to 10,000. It’s fast and free, to send Neo.
The silver to Bitcoin’s gold is cheap, fast, reliable, and secure.
Litecoin is often referred to as Bitcoin’s little brother or the silver to Bitcoin’s gold. It’s also a fast, reliable, and secure way to send and receive funds. Litecoin is based on Bitcoin’s codebase like DGB. It’s also one of the most widely accepted coins, and it’s a popular alternative to BTC to get money in and out of Altcoins since it’s also on most exchanges.
Much wow! Much cheap! Fast! Amaze!
Dogecoin is the original meme coin created by Jackson Palmer and Billy Markus. Dogecoin was created as a joke in 2013, and doesn’t even have active developers maintaining the project. It still managed to become an internet sensation and have a vibrant community of supporters. Dogecoin is famous for being super cheap, and it still has more transactions than Bcash.
Amanda B. Johnson isn’t the only one who thinks Dash is cheap, private, and instant.
Dash launched in 2014 as Xcoin and underwent a couple rebrands before finally emerging as a user-friendly cryptocurrency with a focus on the payments industry. Users can make instant transactions and they can even choose an optional private transaction. Dash has been embraced by the dark web and the medical marijuana industry and has been a favorite of crypto traders as well. Japanese regulators have even discussed banning Dash on Japanese exchanges, due to its private transactions.
A Dash fork geared towards even more privacy.
Pivx was founded in 2016 by two former Dash employees. They forked the Dash codebase and made a few major tweaks, and Pivx was born. Pivx is a proof of stake coin as opposed to its parent Dash, and it’s got even more privacy features to allow users to transact confidentially. It also has the same kind fees and speeds as Dash so it’s almost instant and very cheap.
The currency for Dan Larimer’s blockchain based social media platform is blazing fast!
There is something to be said about delegated proof of stake coins, and the cheap fast transactions they offer. Steem is no exception. The currency of the mega-popular decentralized social media platform Steemit, this coin has been adopted by millions of crypto enthusiasts. Its fast seedy transactions are so popular that Steem is now used in millions of daily transactions, something many competing coins can’t say for themselves.
Russia’s premier blockchain platform is fast, cheap, and underrated
The Waves platform has been one of the most underrated projects in all of crypto. While other coins have billion dollar market caps, and no actual product, Waves offers one of the most comprehensive platforms. Waves has a functioning decentralized exchange, allows anyone to launch their own token, has non-Turing complete smart contracts which are more secure than rival platforms, and the list goes on. Yet many crypto enthusiasts completely overlook this solid project for more fleeting projects with more hype.
I know I will probably catch a lot of flack for not including more coins that boast much faster transaction speeds, lower fees, and have a lot of marketing behind them, like Tron, EOS, and Icon. However, I decided to only include coins that have an actual functioning main net.
I don’t care what it says in a white paper, or in a simulation. I want to see real life people using these coins for the fast and cheap transactions in real life situations before I will recommend them to others, and every coin on this list is being used by real people, right now.