With more than 20,500 different cryptocurrencies on the market, it can be a thrilling adventure to find the new crypto gem that can make you incredible profits. New technologies and consensus mechanisms are emerging. They provide scalable and sustainable solutions for the mass usage of crypto on a global level.
However, some of the earliest cryptocurrencies that hit the market are still relevant today. They are continuing the development of their proven protocols. Litecoin is the first alternative crypto that fills the bill and remains on many investors’ radars.
But what is Litecoin exactly and can it hold a candle to the newest cryptocurrency protocols that are trying to push the industry forward? In this article, we go over the basics of LTC and its protocol and explore some of the most recent developments of its blockchain. We also take a closer look at Litecoin’s price action and some expert predictions. That should allow you to make a decision about whether LTC is worth investing in today.
What Is Litecoin?
Charlie Lee created Litecoin back in 2011 to solve some of the shortcomings of Bitcoin. Even in its early days, the Bitcoin network was showing some imperfections regarding scalability. Users were quickly realizing that high costs and low transaction speeds would not allow it to be accepted as a form of daily payment.
Litecoin was forked from Bitcoin’s code to provide faster transactions. That could accommodate a larger number of users and allow merchants to accept it as a form of payment. Instead of using Bitcoin’s SHA-256 mining algorithm, Litecoin uses Scrypt, a lighter and less complex proof-of-work process.
As a result, Litecoin has 4x the maximum supply of Bitcoin (84 million instead of 21) and can process blocks 4x faster (2.5 minutes instead of 10), according to Quora. Since it is one of the pioneers of the industry, Litecoin has gained a strong community of followers and investors.
Worth noting is that, as a side-product of Litecoin mining, users can also mine Dogecoin, which also uses the Scrypt algorithm.
The Litecoin foundation has been working hard at implementing some new features to the first altcoin. In 2019, they announced that they were implementing Mimblewimble. It is a privacy protocol that brings Litecoin closer to anonymity-focused coins like Monero and Dash.
The protocol itself was successfully implemented in January 2022. It now allows users to opt-in for privacy features when executing transactions. LTC users can now obfuscate their transaction data and make it undiscernible to the external observer.
However, this update was not universally acclaimed. Governments and regulators have been cracking down on privacy coins. They state that their usage facilitates money laundering and criminal activities. Due to this, many exchanges have delisted Litecoin from their offering, as they need to comply with AML and KYC regulations.
LTC Price Trend
Price-wise, Litecoin remains relevant in the market. It currently holds a market cap of around $5 billion (source) and stays firm in the top 20-ish of the cryptocurrency market.
In the recent bullish cycle of 2021, the price of Litecoin surged from $50 to $380, an increase of 660%. While other cryptocurrencies might have outperformed it at one point, the coin managed to make more than decent returns for long-term holders.
However, once exchanges started to delist it and users exchanged LTC to BTC in panic, its price tumbled sharply. By mid-July 2021, LTC was only worth around $120. And the subsequent bear market didn’t do it any favors, increasing selling pressure. As a result, Litecoin is currently trading at around $60.
That being said, experts in the field still have some hope for Litecoin. Digitalcoinprice.com hopes to see it above the $122.66 mark by 2025. Priceprediction.net is even more enthusiastic, providing a $271.61 price target for 2025.
Should You Bet on Litecoin?
It seems that Litecoin has reached a bottom at its current price. This provides a good market entry for anyone interested in owning one of the original cryptocurrencies. Moreover, the privacy and scalability features of the Mimblewimble protocol provide Litecoin with sufficient advantages to make it future-proof. Privacy-focused coins like Litecoin might see another revival as regulators strengthen their grip on users’ anonymity in the crypto sphere.
Last Updated: October 5, 2022