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Launched with a mission to transform the international payments industry, Ripple offers a real-time settlement network for fast and affordable cross-border transactions. XRP, Ripple’s native currency, is used to facilitate transactions on Ripple’s global network.
However, Ripple isn’t the only cryptocurrency project looking to make waves in the world of international payments, so let’s take a look at three leading Ripple alternatives.
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If you’ve spent any time at all analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of Ripple, you’ll no doubt have come across comparisons between Ripple and Stellar – and with good reason. Programmer Jed McCaleb played a key role in Ripple’s development, and after he left the company following a difference of opinion, he moved on to co-found Stellar.
Similar to Ripple, Stellar also offers a distributed payments network designed to provide fast and cheap cross-border payments. By connecting banks, payment systems and people, and through the use of its lumens currency, Stellar allows international payments that can be processed within two to five seconds, with fees of 1/600,000th of a cent per transaction. There are other features to the Stellar network as well, including an ICO platform and a decentralized exchange.
Though they’re often listed as competitors, Ripple and Stellar have so far concentrated their efforts in different areas – Ripple on joining forces with major banks and financial institutions and Stellar on providing low-cost financial services to people in the developing world. However, it remains to be seen which project has adopted the more successful approach.
With a mission to “unbank the banked”, OmiseGO offers a peer-to-peer platform where users can quickly and securely exchange fiat and cryptocurrencies. Built on Ethereum, OmiseGO is developing a currency-agnostic decentralized exchange network capable of interacting with blockchains (eg bitcoin or Litecoin) through clearinghouses in state channels or smart contracts, as well as with digital fiat platforms through the use of collateralized fiat tokens.
OmiseGO also offers an e-wallet software development kit which is free to use and allows digital wallet providers to connect to the public OMG network so that their users can transact any digital assets.
The end goal is to overcome coordination difficulties amongst payment processors, gateways and financial institutions, providing a value transfer service that operates across currencies, asset types and national borders. Although OmiseGO is focused on the southeast Asian market, its network is designed to allow anyone to conduct real-time, peer-to-peer financial transactions, including everything from payments and remittances to B2B commerce and supply-chain finance.
If you’re searching for a cryptocurrency with similarities to Ripple, it’s well worth a closer look.
Our third alternative to Ripple is something a little different. Unlike Ripple and its focus on banks and major financial institutions, Nano (NANO) is designed purely as a peer-to-peer digital currency.
Originally known as RaiBlocks, Nano offers instant, zero-fee transactions and is designed to be infinitely scalable. Launched in 2017, this innovative crypto combines blockchain with directed acyclic graph technology (DAG) in a unique “block-lattice” infrastructure. DAG systems see individual transactions directly linked to one another, offering improved scalability compared to blockchain-based systems.
In short, Nano is a payment currency and nothing more. It aims to become a viable alternative to fiat currency for everyday transactions, offering fast and cheap peer-to-peer payments all over the world.
This means it’s being developed with quite a different focus to XRP and can’t boast anything like the level of financial support or the impressive range of corporate partnerships that Ripple can. However, Nano’s features make it a viable choice for individuals and merchants, so it’s a coin worth watching closely in the months and years ahead.
This is just a small selection of exchanges like Ripple. To find more coins and tokens with similar features and functions to XRP, check out our comprehensive guide to altcoins.
Disclosure: At the time of this writing, the author holds ADA, ICX, IOTA and XLM.
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