The year 2021 was definitely a remarkable year for the crypto industry. Although the meteoric rise of BTC (bitcoin), the most dominant cryptocurrency in the market happened in late 2020,  the following year marked the year when the cryptocurrency recorded its newest all-time high. On Nov. 9, BTC (bitcoin) breached the $68K mark and made its newest all-time high with its price at $68,514. ETH (ethereum), the second most dominant cryptocurrency and the strongest amongst altcoins recorded its newest all-time high after BTC (bitcoin). On Nov. 10, the top altcoin surged to almost $5K with its price at $4,865. 

Despite the consecutive market crashes that are plaguing the market today, investors believe that cryptocurrencies are for long-term investment. DeFi and NFTs have also paved the way for other lucrative investments in the market. If you are a newbie and plans to invest, here’s a list of top 10 altcoins you might want to add to your portfolio. 

Ethereum (ETH)

Ethereum

The second most dominant cryptocurrency today and the king of altcoins. It is also the favorite blockchain for developers and investors when it comes to building apps. From PoW (proof-of-work), the network has now shifted to PoS (proof-of-stake) as its consensus mechanism with its upgrade to 2.0 making it more energy-efficient. This is another strong point for the network since mining has become a major concern among cryptocurrencies today particularly with BTC (bitcoin) given its huge energy consumption and environmental effect due to its carbon footprint according to environmental experts.  

Although the network is currently facing issues on scalability, interoperability, and high gas fees, the 2.0 upgrade which is expected completed in the summer of 2022, will definitely put an end to Ethereum users’ dilemma. It is also expected to unseat Bitcoin as the most dominant cryptocurrency once the upgrade is completed.

From its ICO (initial coin offering) of $0.31 in August 2014, ETH (ethereum) is now at $2,754.18 3,349 and has now a total market cap of $332,047,975,442 in recent data by Crypto.co. In just 7 years, its price has exponentially increased by more than 10,000 times its initial price. 

Cardano (ADA)

Cardano

Listed as among the “ETH killers”, Cardano was founded by Ethereum co-founder Charles Hoskinson in 2015. It was designed to provide solutions to issues plaguing the Ethereum network but it includes regulatory compliance. Unlike Ethereum which has initially resorted to PoW, Cardano has utilized PoS as its consensus mechanism from the start. 

ADA (Cardano) started trading at $0.02 but in data by Crypto.co, it is now at $1.07 and tremendously increased by more than 60 times. The network is one of the strongest contenders to outperform Ethereum given its transaction speed of 65,000 TPS, a far cry from Ethereum’s 15-25 TPS only.

ADA (Cardano) has now a total cap of $34,618,582,704 is now ranked as the 7th largest cryptocurrency in the crypto market.

Solana (SOL)

Solana

The Solana network was a huge surprise before 2021 ended. Founded by Solana Labs in 2017, the platform is designed to host decentralized and scalable applications. From its initial seed sale of $0.04 in April 2018, SOL (Solana), the native token of the network has tremendously increased by more than 6,000 its initial seed price. On Nov. 6, 2021, SOL (Solana) recorded its newest all-time high at $259.96. 

Matt Hougan, chief investment officer at Bitwise Asset Management stated in a report by CNBC that Solana is definitely the best among Ethereum’s leading competitors. 

“Solana is the leading Ethereum competitor. “I wouldn’t put all my chips on it, but I’m a big fan.”

Ethereum and Solana are very similar given that both networks have smart contract capabilities that are highly relevant when running DeFi (decentralized) apps, and NFTs (non-fungible tokens) which are currently making waves in the crypto market today.

Hougan further stated:

“If you’re investing in Solana, you’re betting that its technical sophistication will help it leapfrog Ethereum.”

Solana is definitely worth adding to one’s crypto portfolio. In recent data by Crypto.co, SOL (Solana) is now at $108.65 with is now ranked at #6 with a total market cap of 34,725,310,283.

Binance Coin (BNB)

Binance Coin

BNB (Binance Coin), the native token of Binance is currently at #4 spot today with its price of $381.71 and a market cap of $64,503,601,156. 

The altcoin ICO (initial coin offering) price was only $0.10 and definitely a huge jump from its current price today. On May 10, 2021, BNB (Binance Coin) recorded its newest all-time high at almost $700 with its price at $690.93. 

The success of Binance Smart Chain, Binance crypto exchange, and other platforms in the Binance ecosystem created an increase in the demand for BNB (Binance Coin). The adoption of the digital asset as payment has also added to the reason for its price surge. In a price prediction by Yahoo, the Binance Coin price will likely increase to $614 by Q1 of 2022 from its current price. 

Terra (LUNA)

Terra

Another underrated coin that made a surprise before the previous year ended. The network is an open-source blockchain platform for algorithmic stablecoins, that are pegged against traditional fiat. Launched in 2018 by Terraform Labs and founders Do Kwon and Daniel Shin. 

From its ICO (initial coin offering) price of $0.80 in 2019, LUNA (Terra) is now at $51.53 with a market cap of $20,791,602,052. It is now ranked at #10 among leading cryptocurrencies. On Dec. 27, LUNA (Terra) recorded its newest all-time with its price at $103.36. Its Coinbase listing initially paved the way for the surge in its price but its partnership with Anyswap Network protocol has caused its price to spike even more.

Polkadot (DOT)

Polkadot

Another “ETH killer” and founded by yet another Ethereum co-founder Gavin Wood in 2016. It utilizes nominated proof-of-stake (NPoS) as its consensus mechanism where stakers can nominate validators of their choice and at the same helps to keep the network secure as it penalizes those who nominate bad actors and eliminates the possibility of conspiracy within the network. With most networks, transaction fees are used to incentivize validators in helping to keep them secure. But with Polkadot, it is used to restrict spammers from flooding the network or causing congestions with useless or extraordinarily heavy transactions. 

DOT (Polkadot), the blockchain’s native token is now at $20.16 and sits on the #9 spot among leading cryptocurrencies like BTC (bitcoin) and ETH (ethereum). It has a total market cap of $21,897,065,920and recorded its all-time high on Nov. 4, 2021, with its price at $55. In a report by Yahoo, FX Street experts predicted its price to rise up to $82 in mid-2022.

Oasis Network (ROSE)

Oasis Network

Oasis is the first-ever privacy-enabled network designed to be uniquely scalable and versatile with a transaction speed of 1,000 TPS. It was founded by Dawn Song of Oasis Labs in 2018. 

Only 3 years after its founding, the Oasis network has made various partnerships with leading blockchain projects in the industry today. The most recent was with Meta AI (formerly Facebook). The announcement was made on Nov. 19 through the network’s official Twitter account.

ROSE (Oasis), the native token of the platform started trading at $0.06802 in November 2020. In recent data by Crypto.co, the altcoin is now in the #88 spot among cryptocurrencies, and its market cap has now reached $1,156,690,475. Its price spiked following an announcement on the launching of its $200M ecosystem fund by Binance Labs. 

Avalanche (AVAX)

Avalanche

Another top Ethereum contender, Avalanche has become one of the fastest networks today. The launching “Avalanche Rush” on August 2021, a $180M incentive for top DeFi projects attributed to the network’s ecosystem growth. This has also caused the price of its native token AVAX (Avalanche) to spike. 

Avalanche Blizzard, a $200 million fund that is aimed at fostering development, growth, and innovation both within and outside the public blockchain ecosystem was launched in November 2021. This resulted in AVAX (Avalanche) recording its all-time high at $101.91. Again, on Nov. 21, after the announcement of its partnership with accounting firm Deloitte, AVAX (Avalance) skyrocketed to $147.42 to record its newest all-time high to date.

With the continued growth in its ecosystem and partnership with leading blockchain projects, the price of AVAX (Avalanche) is expected to soar even more. According to a team of analysts at investment bank JP Morgan and a report by crypto investment firm Electric Capital, Avalanche was named as one of the strong contenders among Ethereum competitors along with Polkadot, Solana, and Terra.

In recent data by Crypto.co, AVAX (Avalanche) has now a market cap of $18,016,728,455 and occupies the #12 spot among top digital assets in the crypto space today.

Polygon (MATIC)

Polygon

Formerly known as Matic Network, it is a blockchain scalability platform and framework for connecting and building blockchain networks compatible with Ethereum. It was founded by Kanani, Sandeep Nailwal, Anurag Arjun, and Mihalio Bjelic, a Serbian engineer in late 2017. 

MATIC (Polygon) is now at $1.63, a far cry from its initial price of $0.00263. It is expected to reach $4.52 by the end of 2022. Currently, it now ranked as the #14 leading cryptocurrencies today with a market cap of $11,256,968,744. 

Shiba Inu (SHIB)

Shiba Inu

2021 was the year for meme-tokens, particularly dog-meme tokens. DOGE (dogecoin), the father of all dog-meme tokens rise to popularity after Elon Musk, one of the most influential personalities in the crypto space today made the altcoin his favorite crypto. Dogecoin’s popularity also tricked down to other canine-inspired projects including Shiba Inu. 

Created by an anonymous individual or group called “Ryoshi” in August 2020, SHIB (Shiba Inu) was initially price was $0.000000000056 and went all the way up to $0.00003791 on May 10, 2021. In October 2021, SHIB (Shiba Inu) surged to over 133 percent reaching an all-time high of $0.000088.

Currently, SHIB (Shiba Inu) is now at $0.000021 with a market cap of $11,889,983,675. It is currently ranked as the #14 leading cryptocurrency three knots below its progenitor, DOGE (dogecoin). 

With the further expansion of the crypto market, more promising cryptocurrencies will soon emerge. But 2022 is yet another exciting year for the industry as Web 3.0 starting to dominate the market pushing blockchain projects to become more competitive and present use cases that will expand in the real world. As an investor, this will give you more options but doing your research before investing in any crypto project is definitely a must. It is always best to “DYOR” (do your own research) and should not and never rely on promotions driven by FUD or FOMO.