It would appear to me that this current downturn may soon be over. So let's consider which are the good coins to invest in and which projects look viable. The growth which we have experienced in the past couple of years plus the potential which the technology is offering cannot be ignored. Just take a look at the cryptocurrency marketcap now when compared to the second quarter of 2016…up over $274 billion.
This growth has just been amazing and shows that the market remains resilient despite the recent downturn. So, how should you ascertain which of the myriad of currencies to invest in? Certainly bitcoin will always offer potential growth in the medium to long term and I myself do have some in my portfolio. But if you are looking for better gains, then altcoins and the technology behind them are worth considering.
A few projects go beyond the function of simply being able to transfer value and they offer sustainable solutions by way of decentralized processes. The advent and growth of blockchain technology is going to change the way we do business forever. The genie is certainly out of the bottle.
When looking at a potential coin investment, the first question to ask is does this project fulfill a need? Then, is there a good chance of mass adoption Does the project have an infrastructure by way of a capable team behind it? Being able to sustain growth and adapt to the fast changing technology are critical.
Some projects will burn out and be of little intrinsic value or use after a short period. Therefore the potential investor must look at where he feels the project will be in say, a year. Will there still be a demand for this kind of service or is it just a flash in the pan? Who are the competitors in this particular arena? Will one project soon supplant the other? How long has this coin been in existence for and are the team behind it regularly releasing updates? Well, if the coin has been actively around in excess of 2 years, then the survival chances of the project are looking pretty good.
Those projects which are based upon a platform are the more significant ones and should be given consideration when it comes to investing. A coin which has only a feature or two will not have the longevity of those coins which are platform-based. Ethereum is a good example of a platform-based project with people being able to build applications on it and use it for smart contracts.
The Particl Project (which is another coin in my portfolio) also offers an all-inclusive platform with many features. There is a decentralized ecommerce setup with confidential transactions, encrypted communications and the possibility to build dapps which can be integrated into the Particl Desktop. Atomic Swaps allow for many different cryptocurrencies to be used on the platform, inclusivity being paramount here. Built on the latest Bitcoin Core Codebase, this privacy coin benefits from the former's stability and security. The main feature of the coin itself is its anonymity and when combined with the rest of the platform, it makes for an excellent setup.
Another aspect to consider when investing, is what type of return can you get with your chosen coin? Will you run with either a Proof of Work (PoW) coin or Proof of Stake (PoS) coin? Bitcoin gets a lot of negative publicity about the amount of electricity (at times exaggerated) needed to mine new coins. Admittedly, it is an energy draining process which requires a lot of computing power.
Whilst there are other PoW coins out there which can be mined with a lot less power consumption than mining bitcoin, I myself prefer the PoS concept.
Moreover, Particl Cold Staking, which is basically offline staking, let's you delegate your coins to staking nodes which stake on behalf of another wallet without being able to spend the coins. Currently I can enjoy a 4pct annual return and once the Marketplace goes mainnet, I will additionally have a share of the listing fees. This does not require any special computing power or special chips, just a server or even a Raspberry Pi will do. This makes the Part token an attractive investment, not only because of the staking rewards but also, due to the breadth and scope of the platform itself, an ongoing appreciation in value of the token cannot be ruled out.
Certainly there are other privacy coins out there such as Monero, Dash and Zcash, but these are feature-based coins only without any type of integrated infrastructure. They are good for the transfer of value but they will eventually be out-performed by coins which have more to offer by way of their platforms.
Another coin with a lot of potential is Ark. With an infrastructure which is a perfect example of a real-use case, the platform offers blockchain solutions for everyone. These blockchains can readily be created by anyone in just a few minutes.
With mass adoption in mind, the team have incorporated many different coding languages and blockchains to give the best experience to users. Arkuses "SmartBridges" which allow blockchains, which are basically incompatible, to work together. So with this system, Ark can therefore trigger events on other chains. Users who want to deploy a blockchain for their own project will find the SmartBridge already built in.
Ark uses the Delegated Proof of Stake (dPos) consensus algorithm. Similar to the PoS used by the Particl Project, big computing power and concerns about electricity consumption are not part of the mix. As the name suggests, the network is secured by delegates of which there are presently 51, all of whom are elected by the token holders themselves. The delegates are rewarded for confirming blocks and they in turn share these rewards with those who have voted for them. The project will go far by bringing blockchain technology to a point where it can be easily accessible to all.
There are some good opportunities out there and in the not too distant future, I believe that mass adoption of cryptocurrencies will soon be upon us. But let's not forget the naysayers, the doubters and the non-believers. When it comes to trash talking innovation, this was even taking place around 1879 when the American Register published an editorial informing readers
"it is doubtful if electricity will ever be [widely] used" because it was to expensive to generate."
So in general terms, when considering to put your hard earned cash into a project, do your homework. Invest with your head and not with your heart. Don't simply ride on a coin which is flavor of the month as you will most likely end up with a bad taste in your mouth.