IV Future
2017-04-26 By IV Future

Bitcoin vs Ethereum

The recent surge in prices of blockchain currency Ethereum (ETH) has many in the alternative investment community chattering.

Bitcoin has more than doubled in price this year alone, but it has been outperformed by its closest rival Ether, which is up over 2,300 percent.

On January 1, bitcoin was trading at the day's high of $1,003.25. On Wednesday, it broke through the $2,300 barrier for the first time to hit a fresh record high of $2,377.32, according to CoinDesk, marking a year-to-date rise of 137 percent. To find out what's driving bitcoin's rally, read more here.

Meanwhile, bullishness around bitcoin has stoked appetite for other cryptocurrencies. One in particular known as ether is getting traction. Ether has risen from $8.24 on January 1, to a high of $203.30, according to data from Coinmarketcap.com. This represents a 2,367 percent rise year-to-date.

Why is Ethereum different to Bitcoin? One of the major difference is the time it takes to process “blocks.” Bitcoin’s average block time is about 10 minutes, while Ethereum’s is only around 12 seconds. This faster time is owing to Ethereum’s “GHOST” protocol, and its ability to handle more data. This is a huge advantage because faster block times mean confirmations for things like transactions are quicker. Slow transaction speeds are one of the major impediments to Bitcoin receiving more adoption among payment providers and vendors.

Another major difference between Bitcoin vs Ethereum is the depth of their monetary supply. A little more than three quarters of all bitcoins have been mined presently, and the supply is exceedingly low (16.24 million mined; 21 million maximum supply). On the other hand, Ethereum does not carry a hard supply limit. Over 89,752,192 coins currently exist in supply, and this will only grow at a brisk, but steady pace in the future.

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