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CoinCodex - The Top 12 Cryptocurrencies to Purchase in December 2023


With the cryptocurrency markets still in an uncertain position, many crypto investors are wondering if it’s time to sell in order to avoid further losses or if the market is going to recover soon. 

Even though the crypto markets have so far always recovered from their bearish periods, every bear market has its “casualties” that never make a strong recovery. Therefore, it’s important to choose quality crypto projects that have a good chance of surviving the bear market and thriving in the future.

We’ve analyzed 200 of the top cryptocurrencies based on their liquidity and availability, technology, sector leadership, tokenomics and more key factors. You can read more about our criteria a bit further down in the article.

By doing so, we’ve narrowed the list down to 12 cryptocurrencies that present the most compelling opportunities at the moment. The top three coins on our list are updated weekly to reflect the most up-to-date developments in the crypto and blockchain sector. Here's our roundup of the best cryptocurrency to invest in 2023:

  1. Bitcoin – Decentralized peer-to-peer cryptocurrency
  2. Ethereum – The leading blockchain for smart contracts
  3. Chainlink – The top decentralized oracle network
  4. Solana – High-performance blockchain platform for smart contracts
  5. XRP – Highly efficient digital currency
  6. BNB  – A popular cryptocurrency utilized in the Binance ecosystem
  7. GMX  – A decentralized crypto d erivatives exchange
  8. Uniswap – The biggest DEX on Ethereum
  9. Mina Protocol  – An extremely lightweight blockchain
  10. Cosmos  – A network of interoperable blockchains
  11. Litecoin  – A cheaper and faster alternative to Bitcoin
  12. Toncoin  – A project based on Telegram's blockchain plans

Best Cryptos to Buy Right Now

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Let’s start off by highlighting three cryptocurrency projects that have seen important developments recently or have big events coming up in the near future. We update these highlighted coins on a weekly basis to reflect the latest developments in the world of crypto and blockchain.

Before we dive into our list of the best cryptos to buy, we should note that choosing which crypto to buy is only the first step in your crypto investment journey. It's also important to choose the right platform to buy crypto, and you also have to decide how you will be storing your cryptocurrency.

In our opinion, the best way to invest in crypto is to transfer your coins to a hardware wallet after you buy it on an exchange. A great starting point is to buy cryptocurrency on KuCoin and store it in a Ledger hardware wallet.

1. Bitcoin

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Bitcoin is a decentralized peer-to-peer cryptocurrency that was initially described in 2008 and launched in early 2009. Bitcoin was invented by a person using the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, whose real identity is still unknown.

Bitcoin introduced the concept of a blockchain and provides a fully decentralized digital currency that’s extremely secure. It implements Proof-of-Work to make it very difficult to alter the history of transactions or double spend coins. The network is secured by miners, who are rewarded with BTC coins for adding blocks to the Bitcoin blockchain.

BTC can be sent anywhere in the world on a 24/7 basis, and transactions cannot be blocked by any intermediaries. By holding their own private keys, users can self-custody their Bitcoin without requiring institutions such as banks.

Even though countless cryptocurrencies and blockchain platforms have been released after Bitcoin, BTC is still easily the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.

Why Bitcoin?

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Bitcoin has crossed the $40,000 price level for the first time in 2023 as the markets continues to be optimistic about the chances of a spot Bitcoin ETF being approved for trading in the United States market.

Recently, the SEC asked for feedback from the public regarding a spot Bitcoin ETF proposed by asset management firm Franklin Templeton. According to Bloomberg's ETF analyst James Seyffart, this could have been a sign that the SEC was "likely a move to line every applicant up for potential approval by the Jan 10, 2024". Meanwhile, another Bloomberg ETF analyst, Eric Balchunas, reiterated that he continues to believe there is a 90% chance the SEC will approve a spot Bitcoin ETF by January 10, 2024. 

People asking me if we changed odds. No, we still holding line at 90% odds of approval by Jan 10 (aka this cycle), the same odds we've had for months (before it was cool/safe). What we watching for now: more amended/final filings to roll in and clarity on in-kind vs cash creates https://t.co/uiWgfxOfzz

— Eric Balchunas (@EricBalchunas) November 29, 2023

Another reason why the market might be so bullish on Bitcoin is that there are expectations the U.S. Federal Reserve is likely finished with raising interest rates. However, this doesn't necessarily mean that rate cuts are expected anytime soon. 

Notably, this is the first time that BTC trades above $40,000 since the collapse of Terra in the spring of 2022. Bitcoin's bullish momentum has also catalyzed the altcoin markets, as we've seen the likes of ORDI, LUNC and IOTA make substantial gains in the last 7 days.

2. Ethereum

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Ethereum is a blockchain that supports smart contracts, enabling more complex use cases such as decentralized lending protocols and non-fungible tokens. The Ethereum project was founded by Vitalik Buterin, who published the Ethereum whitepaper in late 2013. The Ethereum blockchain launched in July 2015.

One of the first use-cases enabled by Ethereum that gained a lot of traction was the ability to issue custom tokens that could be transacted over the Ethereum blockchain. This feature was utilized by many projects to conduct fundraising through Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and other types of token sales.

Today, Ethereum has an extremely vibrant ecosystem of decentralized applications – including decentralized financial services, NFT marketplaces, publishing platforms, decentralized cryptocurrency exchanges, and more – which makes it a good investment in 2023, in our opinion.

ETH is the native asset of the Ethereum blockchain, providing an incentive for users to secure the network. The Ethereum network originally implemented a Proof-of-Work consensus mechanism, but switched over to Proof-of-Stake in September of 2022.

Why Ethereum?

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Ethereum is now trading at its highest levels since May 2022, with the ETH price rising above the $2,200 level for the first time this year. While the Bitcoin ETF narrative continues to dominate the crypto markets, some asset managers also have ambitions to get a spot Ethereum ETF approved for trading in the U.S. markets — asset management giant BlackRock filed their application for a spot Ethereum ETF in mid-November. 

The Bybit cryptocurrency exchange recently published a report showing that institutional traders on the platform have been concentrated in stablecoins, Bitcoin and Ethereum in the period between December 2022 and September 2023. While their allocation to Bitcoin (35%) was significantly higher than their allocation to Ethereum (15%), it does show that Ethereum is increasingly being perceived as a "safer" crypto asset and a legitimate investment even among institutional players.

Ethereum's performance in the last month (+22%) has been mostly in line with Bitcoin, although it has been outperformed by 43 out of the top 100 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. However, ETH is still down about 53.7% from its all-time high (compared to Bitcoin's -39.1%), which could suggest there's some additional upside left in Ethereum.

Ethereum is still undoubtedly the smart contracts platform with the strongest ecosystem, and we'll likely see plenty of demand for ETH if we are indeed headed for a crypto bull market.

3. Chainlink

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Chainlink is a decentralized oracle network that allows blockchains to access reliable data outside of the blockchain. The project aims to address the “oracle problem” faced by blockchains—by reliably connecting blockchains to the “outside world”, Chainlink unlocks a wide range of use cases that wouldn’t be possible with on-chain data alone. 

Chainlink is already the most widely used oracle service in the decentralized finance sector, and is also gaining traction in the NFT and crypto gaming sectors. For example, a decentralized finance protocol could leverage the Chainlink network to feed data about crypto prices on centralized exchanges (which function off-chain) to its smart contracts. NFT projects can utilize Chainlink for provable randomness, which establishes trust in the fairness of NFT minting and distribution.

Why Chainlink?

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LINK is one of the most interesting tokens to follow at the moment, having gained 39% against the US dollar in the last month and almost doubling the performance of Bitcoin in the same time period. A report from DeFi Edge noted that Chainlink has been among the most purchased tokens among "smart money" wallets tracked by the publication. 

Another recent positive development for Chainlink is that the v0.2 version of Chainlink's staking program is now live on the Ethereum mainnet. v0.2 represents a full re-architecture into a modular, extensible platform optimized for upgrades, including features such as a new unbonding mechanism providing better flexibility for withdrawals, ehnanced security and a dynamic rewards mechanism. 

Chainlink's tech is constantly being integrated by projects who require oracle services and/or interoperability between different blockchain platforms. The most recent integration announced by Chainlink is with Swell, a liquid staking protocol that's using Chainlink's CCIP (cross-chain interoperability protocol) to transfer tokens between different blockchains. 

— Chainlink (@chainlink) December 2, 2023

4. Solana

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Solana is a smart contracts platform with a unique architecture that allows it to process thousands of transactions per second while keeping costs extremely low. Solana achieves this by utilizing a unique Proof-of-History algorithm and a Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism. SOL is among the cheapest cryptos to transfer on the market, as users pay less than $0.001 per transaction on average.

Solana was founded in 2018 by Anatoly Yakovenko. The platform’s mainnet launched in March 2020, and saw a huge boost in adoption in 2021. While SOL has lost a lot of its value in the 2022 bear market, Solana still has one of the most impressive ecosystems in the cryptocurrency sector.

Why Solana?

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Solana has been a very strong performer this month, gaining a whopping 116% against the dollar in the last 30 days. This has been the second-best performance in the last month among the cryptocurrency top 25.

Asset management firm VanEck has recently published a report outlining the long-term potential of Solana. The firm highlighted Solana’s data throughput as the best in the blockchain sector, which would allow it to be the natural choice for a blockchain-based "killer app" that could serve 100 million users worldwide. Of course, it remains to be seen if the blockchain ecosystem will ever see a killer app that attracts a truly massive audience.

In the most optimistic scenario presented by the report, the price of SOL could rise to a whopping $3,211 by 2030. Meanwhile, the token is projected to trade at $10 in the bearish scenario, and at $335 in the base scenario. 

solana trading volume

Image source: CCData

Solana’s impressive price performance is reflected in its share of overall trading volume in the spot markets as well. According to CCData, Solana accounted for over 5.5% of all trading volume on centralized exchanges in November (as of the 13th). On November 11th, Solana set a new ATH trading volume market dominance, reaching 8.85% of all trading volume on CEXes. The cryptocurrency thus surpassed its previous ATH of 8.66% set in September 2021.

In addition to impressive price performance and trading volume figures, Solana’s DeFi ecosystem has been firing on all cylinders as well. DeFiLlama reports that the total value locked (TVL) increased from $215 million at the beginning of the year to $1.02 billion at the time of writing.

5. XRP

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XRP is a cryptocurrency that was launched in June of 2012. It was developed by David Schwartz, Jed McCaleb and Arthur Britto, who started a company called OpenCoin together with Chris Larsen. 80% of the XRP supply was gifted to the company by the developers of XRP. OpenCoin has since been renamed to Ripple, and the company has put the majority of its XRP holdings into escrow.

XRP provides very fast and low-cost transfers, making it suitable for use-cases like remittances. It uses neither Proof-of-Work nor Proof-of-Stake, but instead implements the XRP Ledger Consensus Protocol. Every participant in the XRP network can choose a set of validators that they trust to behave honestly.

Ripple has implemented the XRP cryptocurrency into its products, most notably On-Demand Liquidity (ODL). ODL works in partnership with cryptocurrency exchanges uses XRP to provide efficient cross-border money transfers.

Why XRP?

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XRP has been on a tear recently, gaining 26% in the last week, hitting its highest price level since July and overtaking BNB in market capitalization. Although this could mean that XRP is overextended and due for a price correction, it’s important to keep in mind that the current rally comes on the heels of several positive developments related to Ripple and XRP.

In October, the SEC dropped claims against top Ripple executives Brad Garlinghouse and Chris Larsen, even though the regulator’s legal battle against the Ripple company itself continues. 

In other news, Ripple has partnered with the National Bank of Georgia to provide the technology powering a pilot for a central bank digital currency. The Digital Lari pilot project will be based on the Ripple CBDC Platform.

Today, we announce a partnership with the National Bank of Georgia (NBG) on the Digital Lari (GEL) pilot project. The pilot will leverage Ripple’s award-winning #CBDC Platform to evaluate practical use cases & benefits for the public sector & businesses.?? https://t.co/rtE3zxlAkm

— Ripple (@Ripple) November 2, 2023

XRP has also recently been recognized by the Dubai Financial Services Authority and approved for use in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). 

6. BNB

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BNB is a token that was launched by the Binance cryptocurrency exchange in 2017. BNB serves two primary functions. Holders of the token get access to special benefits when using Binance – this includes lower trading fees, access the exchange’s Launchpad and Launchpool programs, cashback on Binance Visa card purchases, and more.

The token is also used as the native asset of the BNB Chain blockchain. BNB Chain is a variant of Ethereum that offers significantly lower transaction fees to users, and it allows developers to easily deploy EVM-compatible decentralized applications. Previously known as Binance Coin, BNB has now gone through an extensive rebranding.

Why BNB?

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The 25th quarterly BNB coin burn has been enacted, with 2.13 million BNB coins being permanently removed from circulation, which translates to 1.38% of the BNB supply. At the time of writing, the value of the burned coins is around $454 million.

Deflationary #BNB https://t.co/pPvFHRh44M

— CZ ? Binance (@cz_binance) October 16, 2023

This token burn was conducted through the BNB Auto-Burn mechanism, which determines the amount of tokens to burn based on the price of BNB and the number of blocks produced on the BNB chain blockchain in the designated time period.

The goal of the BNB burn program is to eventually reduce the circulating supply of BNB to 100 million coins. The coin launched with a supply of 200 million coins, which has since been reduced to 151 million through quarterly burns.

Recently, we’ve also seen a spike in demand for BNB thanks to Binance adding a new project to its Binance Launchpool platform. Until October 30, BNB holders can stake their coins to earn NTRN tokens from the Neutron project.

7. GMX

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GMX is a decentralized cryptocurrency exchange specialized in derivatives, more specifically perpetual futures contracts. The GMX exchange is currently available on the Arbitrum and Avalanche blockchain platforms.

The GMX ecosystem features two tokens: GMX and GLP. GMX is a utility and governance token which accrues 30% of the fees collected on the GMX exchange. Meanwhile, GLP is the platform’s liquidity provider token, which accrues 70% of the fees collected on the exchange.

GLP represents an index that currently consists of 8 different crypto assets which are supported on the GMX exchange for swaps and leverage trading. Users can mint GLP by supplying any of the supported assets to the pool, or redeem GLP for assets held by the pool.

The platform supports trading with up to 50x leverage, which is competitive compared to most centralized crypto derivatives platforms.

Why GMX?

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GMX was the most successful of all projects that applied to receive a portion of a short-term incentives program announced by Arbitrum. The incentives program allocated 50 million ARB tokens, which is worth about $41 million at the time of writing. The GMX project received 12 million ARB, which is over $10 million. The second largest grant was received by Gains Network.

GMX’s proposal for the @Arbitrum STIP grant program has reached quorum, and been accepted by the DAO with more than 186 million votes in favour.

The passing of the proposal will enable GMX, alongside other leading protocols, to boost the growth of Arbitrum and its #DeFihttps://t.co/NAYEGsynSe

— GMX ? (@GMX_IO) October 13, 2023

The allocated tokens are expected to be used to provide rewards to users who provide liquidity or engage with the protocol in other ways. The GMX project also says one of its main goals is to convert centralized exchange users to become decentralized exchange users.

8. Uniswap

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Uniswap is a decentralized cryptocurrency exchange that introduced and popularized the AMM (automated market maker) model. This unique design removes the need for order books, providing an elegant way for swapping between different tokens directly on the blockchain without relying on intermediaries.

The Uniswap protocol is decentralized, and anyone can create liquidity pools for any token. This means that the newest crypto assets are often traded on Uniswap before they make their way on centralized cryptocurrency exchanges.

The model introduced by Uniswap has been adopted by many decentralized exchanges on different blockchain platforms. However, Uniswap remains the most active decentralized exchange in terms of trading volume.

Uniswap is governed by holders of the UNI token, who can submit and vote for proposals. UNI was distributed to past users of the Uniswap protocol via an airdrop in 2020, and the token is now available for purchase on a variety of both decentralized and centralized trading platforms.

Why Uniswap?

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The Uniswap protocol recently a record daily trading volume at $11.84 billion. This was almost twice as much volume as the protocol’s previous daily volume record. 

? @Uniswap at almost $12b in daily volume, hitting 11 digits for the first time ever!!!

? I don't often tweet volume milestones anymore but that's over 5% of Nasdaq https://t.co/ZUszhiUNPu

— hayden.eth ? (@haydenzadams) March 12, 2023

Uniswap hit its record as users rushed in to trade USDC, the major stablecoin that came under pressure over the weekend after the failure of Silicon Valley Bank. The reason why this failure was relevant to USDC is that Circle, a key issuer of the USDC stablecoin, disclosed that $3.3 billion out of the roughly total $40 billion in funds backing USDC are held at Silicon Valley Bank.

This volume surge shows that the Uniswap protocol is a key piece of infrastructure for the crypto markets, and can successfully handle very large volumes even during periods of chaos in the market.

In addition, the Uniswap project has recently also announced a non-custodial mobile wallet that supports the Ethereum mainnet as well as the Arbitrum and Optimism layer 2 scalability platforms. 

9. Mina Protocol

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Mina Protocol is a project that’s building an extremely lightweight blockchain. With the help of zero-knowledge technology, the size of the Mina blockchain is kept at just 22 kilobytes at all times.

The Mina Protocol’s version of decentralized applications is called zkApps. The smart contracts these applications are built with support zero-knowledge proofs, which can allow users to prove ownership of their data without disclosing the data itself to the party they’re interacting with. zkApps can also source data from any website privately, providing easy access to real-world data instead of relying on complicated oracle systems.

Why Mina Protocol?

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Zero-knowledge technology is likely to become a very important trend in the crypto and blockchain space moving forward, and Mina Protocol could be positioned very well to take advantage of this.

In addition, the lightweight design of the Mina Blockchain makes it easier to participate in the network, which is especially relevant for mobile devices. If we’re going to see widespread adoption of blockchain technology, it’s most likely that a large number of people will be using blockchain through mobile devices. This could make Mina a candidate to become one of the next cryptocurrencies to explode.

10. Cosmos

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Cosmos is a network that’s designed to allow different blockchain platforms to interoperate with each other. The Cosmos network is coordinated by the Cosmos Hub, a Proof-of-Stake blockchain. The Cosmos Hub is also designed to facilitate connections with blockchains outside of the Cosmos ecosystem, for example Bitcoin and Ethereum. The different blockchains that make up Cosmos communicate through a protocol called IBC (Inter-Blockchain Communication). 

The Cosmos Hub and other blockchains in the Cosmos network are built using the Cosmos SDK framework. Blockchains launched on Cosmos benefit from a robust Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism, fast transaction times (about 7 seconds) and low transaction costs (about $0.01 per transaction).

The native asset of Cosmos is called ATOM. Users can stake their ATOM tokens to contribute to the network’s security as well as earn staking rewards and a portion of the transaction fees collected by the network.

Why Cosmos?

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The Cosmos community has approved a proposal to cap the inflation rate of the ATOM token at 10%. The current inflation rate is at about 14%, while the cap is set at 20%. Once enacted, the proposal will reduce the amount of new ATOM tokens entering circulation. However, it will also reduce the APR of staking ATOM tokens from about 19% to roughly 13.4%.

According to the proposal, research indicated that the Cosmos Hub blockchain is currently overpaying for its security. The proposal also argues that reducing the inflation of ATOM could have a positive influence on decentralized finance protocols and money markets in the Cosmos ecosystem. 

The vote was quite contentious, as the "Yes" option received 41.1% of the vote. The "No" option received 31.9% of the vote, the "Veto" option received 6.6%, while the remaining 20.4% of the votes were for the "Abstain" option. Interestingly enough, this proposal saw the highest voter turnout in the history of the Cosmos ecosystem.

11. Litecoin

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Litecoin is a cryptocurrency that was initially launched in October 2011, making it one of the oldest “altcoins” on the market. Litecoin is heavily based on Bitcoin, as it started off as essentially a modified version of Bitcoin’s codebase.

Litecoin has a maximum coin supply of 84 million, which is 4 times larger than that of Bitcoin. Its targeted block time is 2.5 minutes, which is 4 times faster than Bitcoin’s targeted block time. Just like Bitcoin, Litecoin also uses Proof-of-Work to reach consensus about the state of its Ledger. While Bitcoin uses the SHA-256 hash function, Litecoin uses the scrypt hash function.

Sometimes, Litecoin has been used as a proving ground for technologies that were later implemented into Bitcoin. For example, SegWit was first implemented into Litecoin before it went live on the Bitcoin network. However, Litecoin also has some unique technological aspects to it, most notably its support for MimbleWimble privacy technology.

Litecoin fans often describe Litecoin as the “silver to Bitcoin’s gold”. LTC transactions are cheaper and faster than BTC transactions, making Litecoin a more suitable option for everyday payments.

Why Litecoin?

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The next Litecoin halving is expected to take place on August 2 at 1:30 PM UTC. Litecoin has been a strong performer in the past couple of months as traders have been accumulating their LTC positions ahead of the upcoming halving. LTC is up +38% since the start of the year and is currently the 11th largest digital currency by market capitalization.

Racing to the HALVING!! Less than 2000 blocks to go! #Litecoin $LTC #sundayvibes #Litecoinhalving pic.twitter.com/5HP9iIuSf3

— Litecoin (@litecoin) July 30, 2023

According to blockchain analytics firm LunarCrush, Litecoin has had “the strongest combined social and trading activity across the crypto market” as of late. “Social engagement continues to spike higher, indicating increased community activity and participation within social posts,” LunarCrush wrote about the trending coin.

In addition to the excitement surrounding the halving, the institutional investor narrative has been very strong in crypto as of late – firms like Blackrock, Fidelity, and several others filed Bitcoin ETF applications over the past couple of weeks, signaling that institutions consider crypto as a part of their long term strategies. In the midst of this mounting investor interest, LTC has been listed on the EDX Markets exchange as one of the four cryptocurrencies on the platform. EDX Markets is a cryptocurrency trading platform backed by financial industry heavyweights, including Fidelity and Citadel Securities.

Another reason why Litecoin has been doing well as of late could be that LTC doesn’t appear to be in danger of being labeled an unregistered security by U.S. regulators. In its recent lawsuits against Binance and Coinbase, the SEC has alleged that several cryptocurrencies offered by the exchanges are unregistered securities, but didn’t mention Litecoin as one of them.

12. Toncoin

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Toncoin is a blockchain project that’s continuing the development of a blockchain platform that was initially designed by the team behind the Telegram messenger. While Telegram was forced to abandon the project due to legal trouble with securities regulators in the United States, community members saw potential in Telegram’s blockchain vision and resumed development under the name Toncoin.

The development of Toncoin is led by an organization called the TON Foundation, which has no formal association with Telegram. However, the Telegram team is integrating various solutions powered by the Toncoin blockchain into their messenger. For example, the Telegram app now allows users to access the TON Space wallet. 

From a technical perspective, Toncoin is a scalable blockchain with smart contracts functionality and a Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism. However, the initial distribution of TON was performed through a Proof-of-Work model to ensure a fair launch. 

Why Toncoin?

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Telegram recently announced its "Giveaways" feature, which allows channel owners to distribute Telegram Premium subscriptions and other prizes to users. These giveaways can be funded with Toncoin using the Fragment platform. 

Telegram Channels can now host the first fair and transparent giveaways in the history of social media. Participants can win prizes like Telegram Premium (or Teslas ?)https://t.co/aOMNhWMgZm

— Telegram Messenger (@telegram) November 7, 2023

To celebrate the new feature, Telegram founder Pavel Durov is giving away 10,000 Telegram Premium subscriptions that he funded through the Fragment platform. According to Durov, he bought $200,000 worth of Toncoin on a cryptocurrency exchange to fund this giveaway.

The feature is yet another showcase of Toncoin’s potential to tap into a massive userbase (Telegram has an estimated 800 million users) through its integrations with the Telegram messenger. Toncoin has been picking up a lot of steam recently, as the Q3 2023 TON Ecosystem report shows the number of Toncoin accounts has grown by more than 250% in the last year.

Another recent positive development for Toncoin is the TON Foundation’s partnership with Tencent Cloud and Chainbase, which is designed to provide cloud infrastructure for Toncoin developers.

  Native asset Launched in Description Market cap*
Bitcoin BTC 2009 Decentralized peer-to-peer cryptocurrency $816 billion
Ethereum ETH 2015 The leading platform for smart contracts and DApps $2269 billion
Chainlink LINK 2019 Top decentralized oracle network $8.7 billion
Solana SOL 2020 High-performance blockchain for smart contracts $25.7 billion
XRP XRP 2012 Highly efficient digital currency $33.4 billion
BNB BNB 2017 BNB Chain's native asset and token used in Binance ecosystem $34.7 billion
GMX GMX 2021 Decentralized crypto derivatives trading platform $485 million
Uniswap UNI 2020 The biggest decentralized exchange protocol $3.6 billion
Mina Protocol MINA 2021 Extremely lightweight blockchain with ZK technology $738 million
Cosmos ATOM 2019 A network of interconnected blockchains $3.6 billion
Litecoin LTC 2011 A cheaper and faster alternative to Bitcoin $5.4 billion
Toncoin TON 2021 A project based on Telegram's blockchain plans $8 billion

*Data as of December 4, 2023, at 14:00 UTC.

Best crypto to buy for beginners

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If you're a new entrant in the cryptocurrency space, it's probably best to stick to cryptocurrencies that have been around for a longer period of time and have a well-developed ecosystem of resources for users. This will make it easier for you to set up your wallet and find answers if you encounter any problems along the way.

If you're a beginner, consider sticking to cryptocurrencies that satisfy the following criteria:

  • The coin has a significant market capitalization ($1 billion and up)
  • The coin is listed on many cryptocurrency exchanges and can easily be exchanged against fiat currencies
  • The coin has solid liquidity (at least $100 million in 24-hour trading volume)
  • The coin is already a working product and is not based on future promises

If you stick to coins that meet these criteria, you'll automatically be filtering out a lot of low-quality projects and reducing your chances of falling victim to scams. You will also easily be able to sell your coins and convert them to fiat currency if you ever decide to do so.

Here's a few examples of cryptocurrencies that are worth considering for beginner investors in crypto. These coins have a lot of liquidity, well-developed ecosystems and a lot of educational resources and tools that will help beginners get up to speed.

  • Bitcoin
  • Ethereum
  • Litecoin
  • Polygon
  • Solana

Please note that cryptocurrencies are risky investments and typically display a lot of price volatility. This is true even for established cryptocurrencies with multi-billion dollar market capitalizations. Never invest more than you are willing to lose.

Best crypto to buy for long-term investors

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Many crypto investors prefer to passively hold their cryptocurrencies over the long term instead of actively trading them. Frankly, this is a good decision if you don't want to put a lot of time and effort into following everything that's happening in the crypto and blockchain space.

If you're trying to invest in crypto for the long term, we recommend that you only stick to the most established cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. While they are still risky, their fundamentals are much more robust than projects that heavily depend on just a few developers and community leaders.

In order to invest in crypto successfully over the long term, we recommend that you store your coins safely using a hardware crypto wallet. Although there's plenty of high-quality hardware wallets out there, Ledger's devices stand out as the best choice overall in our opinion.

Get a Ledger Hardware Wallet

How we chose the best cryptocurrencies to buy

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With thousands of different cryptocurrencies on the market, it can be challenging to narrow down the list to only about a dozen coins. When creating this list, we aimed to showcase a variety of cryptocurrency projects, ranging from well-established projects to more speculative projects that could potentially have a lot of upside. Here's the factors we considered when deciding which cryptocurrencies to feature.

Availability

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It's important for a cryptocurrency to be easily available across a variety of cryptocurrency exchanges, including both centralized and decentralized options. We also considered whether the cryptocurrency can be traded directly against fiat currencies, which makes the process of buying and selling much more straightforward.

Market capitalization

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The coins featured on our list of the best cryptocurrencies to buy in 2023 are all among the 100 largest crypto assets by market capitalization. By itself, a large market capitalization doesn't mean that the project is of high quality. However, it is a good indication that there's a lot of community interest in the project, and coins with a larger market cap are more resilient to market manipulation attempts as moving the market requires large amounts of capital.  

Sector leadership

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The cryptocurrency market can be divided into several sectors. For example, we have Proof-of-Work cryptocurrencies and Proof-of-Stake cryptocurrencies, which represent two of the main approaches towards achieving decentralized consensus. We can further identify other sectors such as decentralized finance, non-fungible tokens, layer 2 projects, meme coins and others.

We attempted to highlight projects that are leaders in their respective sectors in order to showcase the variety that can be found in the crypto and blockchain space.

Working products

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It's important that the cryptocurrency we're featuring has a working product already and isn't simply based on future promises. When it comes to cryptocurrencies, we generally avoid highlighting coins that don't have a working mainnet yet. When it comes to tokens, we try to focus on tokens that are used as utility tokens in a working product or as governance tokens in an actively used decentralized protocol.

Occasionally, we will highlight coins that are about to launch their mainnet or key product soon. However, we try to limit this only to top tier projects that are highly anticipated by the crypto community.

Team and development

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Most high-quality crypto and blockchain projects are transparent about their team and their credentials. We prefer to highlight projects developed and managed by highly qualified individuals. In addition, we put a lot of value on activity. If a project is being developed actively, we're much more likely to feature it over a project that is only improved occasionally. 

Of course, a project's team or founders being anonymous is not a dealbreaker in every single case. After all, we still don't know who created Bitcoin.

The bottom line: What crypto to buy now?

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What is the best crypto to buy now is mostly dependent on your own individual risk profile and investment goals. If you are interested in cryptocurrencies that have long-term potential, then staples like BTC and ETH are probably the right choice for you. 

If your risk appetite is greater, you can try to pursue investments in cryptos under 1 cent or participate in the latest crypto presales if you are feeling especially frisky. 

In any case, please keep in mind that the cryptocurrency market is highly volatile and that investing in cryptocurrency is subject to considerable risk. Always do your research and consider your financial situation before making any investment, and never invest more than you are willing to lose.

Sources


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