Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency. The coin was launched in 2009 by the pseudonymous Satoshi Nakamoto and is the world's first decentralized digital currency. Bitcoin trades using the ticker symbol BTC and runs on a network of open-source software using blockchain technology. Unlike conventional fiat currencies such as Canadian Dollars, Bitcoin is not issued or controlled by a central bank, government or country. Unlike many other digital currencies, Bitcoin has a hard limit on how many can ever be created. Once all 21 million bitcoins have been created, the global supply will no longer be able to grow.
Ethereum, known as ether, is a scarce digital cryptocurrency similar to Bitcoin. Ethererum allows peer-to-peer payments, with no centralized control by a bank, government or country. The Ethereum blockchain network is also capable of a lot more uses than just running a digital currency. Software developers can use the Ethereum network to run decentralized applications and issue new digital assets, known as Ethereum tokens. The Ethereum network's decentralized nature means that, in theory, the applications or code running on it cannot be shut down or censored.
Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is a version of the original Bitcoin network configured to increase transaction capacity, to allow quicker transactions at a lower cost. Early holders of Bitcoin automatically received equal sums of Bitcoin Cash when the blockchain was forked to create BCH.
Litecoin is an early Bitcoin spinoff or 'altcoin' created in 2011 as a fork of the Bitcoin Core client. It uses a faster payment confirmation schedule and cryptographic algorithm than Bitcoin, aiming to process blocks every 2.5 minutes instead of Bitcoin's 10 minutes. Litecoin was created for cheaper transactions, and designed to be efficient for everyday use.
XRP is a token used for representing the transfer of value across the Ripple Network, which was created in 2013 by Ripple Labs Inc, a US-based technology company. Built for enterprise use, XRP aims to be a fast, cost-efficient cryptocurrency for cross-border payments. Unlike Bitcoin, XRP does not refer to a blockchain network with a native cryptocurrency asset and is issued and managed by Ripple Labs Inc.
Unlike other digital currencies available on Coinsquare, when depositing XRP to your account, you must include the destination address and the unique Tag/Memo to ensure your funds arrive on the app.
Dogecoin was created in 2013 to establish a fun, instant, and accessible system of digital currency payments. The coin's name and logo were inspired by an internet meme about the Japanese dog breed: Shiba Inu, propelling the digital asset to gain popularity among an online community of fans, including Paypal co-founder and Tesla CEO, Elon Musk.
One of the first automated market makers to go live on the Ethereum network, Uniswap is a decentralized exchange that uses liquidity pools to make markets without the need for order books or central facilitators. Its asset token is UNI. The Uniswap protocol was created by Hayden Adams in 2018, but the underlying technology that inspired its implementation was first described by Ethereum co-founder, Vitalik Buterin.
Chainlink is a decentralized oracle network that provides real-world data to smart contracts on the blockchain. What this means is that it operates on an open-source technology that is collectively developed by a large community of developers, researchers, and users who share the goal of building Chainlink into a public good for the benefit of the entire blockchain ecosystem. Chainlink uses its digital asset token LINK to pay for services on the network.
Wrapped Bitcoin (wBTC)
Wrapped Bitcoin (wBTC) is an Ethereum token representing Bitcoin on the Ethereum network. It functions as a bridge between Bitcoin’s network and Ethereum’s system of smart contracts, in order to permit users to use real Bitcoin in Decentralized Finance (DeFi) applications and products. The minting and accounting processes for wBTC are done by a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) with the mandate of ensuring that each unit of wBTC minted on the Ethereum network is backed by a Bitcoin in reserve.
Stellar Lumens (XLM)
Stellar Lumens is a decentralized platform for the transfer of money across borders and financial instruments. This makes it one of the leading blockchains used in cross-border remittances and other high-transaction volume sectors of the economy. Originally launched in 2014, XLM is one of the longest-tenured cryptocurrency assets.
Aave (AAVE), previously called ETHLend (LEND), is a Decentralized Finance (DeFi) lending system that gives users options to lend, borrow and earn interest on digital currencies by depositing them into specially-created liquidity pools. Borrowers can use their digital currency as collateral to take out loans, and lenders earn a variable interest rate. Aave is also a governance token, providing users a say in the development of the protocol.
Maker (MKR) is the native token for the Maker Protocol and MakerDAO lending platform. This is a Decentralized Finance (DeFi) project which maintains the DAI stablecoin and lending markets which permit users to lend and borrow DAI. MKR is involved in governance of the Maker protocol, enabling holders to vote on changes to the platform including setting the DAI interest rate and voting on supported types of collateral.
YFI is the governance token for the yearn.finance decentralized finance (DeFi) platform. This platform is a yield optimizer that automatically moves funds around the DeFi ecosystem in an effort to generate a high return.
SushiSwap (SUSHI) is a decentralized exchange. Similar in function to platforms like Uniswap, SushiSwap runs an Automated market-maker (AMM) that uses liquidity pools provided by users in order to facilitate the buying and selling of cryptocurrency assets. Users are rewarded with protocol fees and SUSHI tokens for providing their assets to the liquidity pools. SUSHI is also a governance token that allows users to vote and propose changes to the protocol.
Compound (COMP) is a lending and borrowing platform. Users have the option to lend their digital currencies into specific pools in order to earn interest on their deposits. Users also have the option to borrow digital currencies automatically without financial intermediaries. The COMP token is used as a reward for borrowers and lenders, as well as in governance of the protocol.
DAI is the 4th largest stablecoin by market cap that seeks to maintain a constant value of $1 USD and uses other cryptocurrency assets as its collateral. DAI is run on the Maker (MKR) protocol, which is a decentralized application (DApp) whose function is to collect collateral and make loans of DAI in an automated way.
Dash is an altcoin forked from the Bitcoin protocol. Dash uses a unique consensus mechanism, where special validators called “Masternodes” can instantly verify a transaction. Dash is designed to be self-governing and self-funding, making it a sustainable digital asset for sending and receiving payments. Dash was founded by software developers Evan Duffield and Kyle Hagan. However, Dash wasn’t the top name choice when it was first launched. The project was originally called XCoin, changing its name to Darkcoin two weeks later before rebranding again to Dash in March 2015. Dash aims to be the most user-friendly and scalable payments-focused cryptocurrency in the world. Dash is marketed to both individual users and businesses, including merchants, financial services, traders and those who need to send international remittances.
USD Coin (USDC)
USD Coin is a stablecoin pegged to the value of the US Dollar. It uses reserves of US Dollars and US Treasury bonds as collateral for each unit of USDC issued. USD Coin is the 2nd largest stablecoin by market cap.
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