When Bitcoin was launched in 2009 no one could have predicted its staggering ascension that would attract immense attention from investors, financial institutions, and crypto enthusiasts alike. It still seems rather unreal that such a novel concept caught on so fast and developed into a worldwide phenomenon. Most people ignored Bitcoin in the beginning. A few took notice of the crypto but didn’t give it much of a chance, believing it will simply fade into obscurity like many other innovations before it have. Well, looking back at its short history we can say that Bitcoin has proved everyone wrong, rising above all expectations.
Bitcoin’s unparalleled and largely unexpected fame served as a source of inspiration for many developers who tried to recreate its success by building similar projects or expand on the concept of digital currencies that Bitcoin introduced to the general public. That’s how alternative coins, or altcoins – a category that includes all types of cryptos and tokens that are not Bitcoin – came into existence and the race to supremacy began. But is it really a race if none of the altcoins created came close to dethroning the original crypto so far? Over a decade since its inception, Bitcoin still dominates the crypto scene as the most valuable and popular digital currency on the market, despite the numerous other contenders that have entered the crypto sphere over the course of time.
Obviously, some projects were more successful than others and managed to establish themselves as powerhouses in the crypto community. Ethereum offers a good example in this respect, becoming the second-largest cryptocurrency and the most popular platform for creating smart contracts. Yet not even Ethereum’s rise to stardom was able to budge Bitcoin from the leading position.
This has many people wondering if altcoins will ever be able to alter the current order and overtake Bitcoin at one point. It’s difficult to predict the future of a coin that was always shrouded in mystery and whose main characteristics are fickleness and volatility. But what we can do is analyze both parties and see where their strengths and weaknesses lie.
Bitcoin has several aces up its sleeve
In order to understand Bitcoin’s success and its immutability, we have to identify the factors that differentiate the crypto from the altcoin lot.
It’s safe to say that everyone in the crypto community knows what Bitcoin is and has a fairly good understanding of the concept that stands behind it. As the original digital currency, Bitcoin was the crypto that set the tone, and in the 12 years since it’s been around it attracted massive amounts of followers to its ranks. So, Bitcoin got the first-mover advantage that fueled its dominance in the market. Over time, Bitcoin has become a brand in the truest sense of the word, and for many, a synonym for cryptocurrencies. That level of fame and recognizability is extremely difficult to achieve for other cryptocurrencies, especially with the tough competition at the moment.
Bitcoin has had its fair share of growing pains, controversies, and unfortunate events since it went live, but it kept on going and never shut down despite all vicissitudes. The network remained functional and accessible through all these challenges. This in itself is a remarkable achievement that very few companies in the world can boast about. No other coin has Bitcoin’s experience or track record of success. Crypto has proved time and time again it’s a reliable technology that can guarantee safety and consistency.
As it evolved, Bitcoin became increasingly stronger and more resilient. Currently, the network encompasses thousands of nodes that ensure complete decentralization. But it all comes down to figure in the end. What is the price of Bitcoin is the first question that comes to mind when researching crypto. In recent years, Bitcoin’s volatility decreased, with price swings being less severe. What’s more, Bitcoin’s technology continues to improve and the many trials it has been subjected to made the coin stronger, further cementing it as a valuable asset.
Concerns regarding Bitcoin’s domination coming from the altcoin front
One of the concerns raised by altcoin’s emergence was potential inflation. There was this idea that the increasing number of altcoins would create inflation for Bitcoin, causing it to lose its value. There’s a simple explanation for why this prediction never materialized. Altcoins and Bitcoin are different types of assets, so there’s no way other coins could ever create inflation for Bitcoin, not even if they mimic the original crypto to perfection. The total supply of Bitcoin is capped at 21 million coins and it will not go over this limit.
Another argument against the leader is that the technology underpinning Bitcoin is outdated and cannot support further capabilities. While it’s true that Bitcoin’s blockchain protocols have received a lot of criticism both for their limitations and for not being sustainable enough, Bitcoin still remains the best alternative to the traditional financial system. It has the largest and safest network and acts as a store of value, which is the trait that makes it such an appealing option to investors.
The innovative advances in blockchain technology have powered up new successful projects in the crypto environment. We’ve mentioned Ethereum as one of the most notable achievements in the field. However, these projects target different audiences than Bitcoin. While Ethereum is extremely valuable to developers and enterprises, Bitcoin works best as a long-term investment. Besides, many crypto enthusiasts don’t have profound knowledge of the blockchain and the practices behind cryptocurrencies, so they prefer to stick to a coin that already has legitimacy, and there’s no crypto better than Bitcoin in this respect.
Also, it has to be noted that part of the success that all altcoins enjoy comes from Bitcoin, as it has laid the path for future projects and continues to be the point of reference for many. So, to sum it up, Bitcoin is simply too strong and has too many things going for it at the moment to be overthrown by altcoins.