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Litecoin (LTC) went live on 13 October 2011 as a fork on the Bitcoin network. It’s very similar to Bitcoin, except that it is designed to be quicker and cheaper to transfer. These similarities naturally place it as a close relative of Bitcoin, and its prices have historically risen and fallen with those of Bitcoin.
You can buy Litecoin on all of the following platforms, in various ways.
Litecoin needs to be held in a cryptocurrency wallet just like any other altcoin. There’s a wide range of options, but not quite as many as you’ll find with Bitcoin.
All of the following hardware wallets support Litecoin.
Litecoin has a range of small but significant technical differences. You might think of it as the quarter to Bitcoin’s dollar.
The supply limit is the maximum number of coins that will be created. This finite limit is necessary for an altcoin to have value. The LTC supply limit is 84 million compared to Bitcoin’s 21 million, so it’s up to 4 times more common. In July 2021, there were over 66.7 million Litecoin tokens in circulation and less than 17.5 million left to mine.
Litecoin blocks are generated four times faster than Bitcoin blocks. The completion of each block confirms the transactions recorded in that block. Generally, this means Litecoin transfers can be done about four times faster than Bitcoin transfers.
Some proponents of LTC believe it will continue to increase in value. They point out that it’s like a “quarter sized” version of Bitcoin that’s arguably more functional, but that its price is much less than a quarter of Bitcoin’s price. The assumption among some buyers is that even if Litecoin prices peak at a quarter of Bitcoin’s, it can still be very worthwhile.
Towards mid 2021, more than three quarters of all the Litecoin that will ever exist were already in circulation, and it can be assumed that mining will get increasingly difficult as it approaches the supply limit. This makes it more likely that the popularity of Litecoin will result in increased demand, and if demand exceeds supply in the future, that could naturally drive the prices up.
It’s also worth noting that Litecoin has tended to be ahead of its time. It was the first top 5 cryptocurrency by market cap altcoin to adopt the features of Segregated Witness (SegWit), which has since become standard among Bitcoin and others.
This ongoing development might bode well for its future popularity, as it could prevent other altcoins from overtaking it later. However, like all cryptocurrencies, nothing about Litecoin can be taken for granted.
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