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Is Litecoin A Fork Of Bitcoin (Explained)

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Litecoin is one of the top cryptocurrencies in the market today. It’s primary function is to make transactions easier between individuals and businesses.

But, unknown to many, Litecoin directly owes its existence to Bitcoin.

Well, how’s that? Read on to find out more.

Is Litecoin A Fork Of Bitcoin?

Yes, Litecoin is a fork of Bitcoin. 

Litecoin copies plenty of its functionality from Bitcoin. However, Litecoin has unique features that make it different from Bitcoin.

For instance, Litecoin runs on a different blockchain to Bitcoin, both have different market values and use cases. 

What Do They Have In Common?

Litecoin and Bitcoin have some commonalities, but generally these similarities are fewer than their differences. Here are two main similarities between them: 

Consensus Mechanism

Both Litecoin and Bitcoin use the Proof of Work mechanism to mine their blocks. Here, miners in both blockchains use computer hardware and mining software to validate new blocks into their chains.

Halving

Earnings from mining both Litecoin and Bitcoin halve after a set period. Up till now, halving in both cryptocurrencies happens after every 4 years.

Is Litecoin Better Than Bitcoin?

Since both Litecoin and Bitcoin solve different problems, none is really better than the other.

However, either Bitcoin or Litecoin will have an edge depending on how you intend to use them.

Let’s look at the following differences between Litecoin and Bitcoin to understand which is better.

Transaction Speeds

As of this writing, the average time it takes to confirm a Litecoin transactions is just 2.5 minutes. For Bitcoin,that time remains at 10 minutes.

The primary reason for founding Litecoin was to make transactions on the Litecoin network faster than Bitcoin. Faster block times make LTC useful in the industry and practical for use in transactions. 

Market Capitalization

The market capitalization of Litecoin and Bitcoin may vary because of market volatility.

However, Bitcoin has a more significant network value than Litecoin—at least two orders of magnitude at the time of this writing.

A larger market cap affects how consumers perceive the two. 

Algorithms

Every cryptocurrency owns a unique algorithm. Litecoin uses the Scrypt algorithm when Bitcoin runs a SHA-256 algorithm. 

Scrypt offers a less complex algorithm in comparison to SHA-256. However, none of these algorithm is essentially better at securing the blockchain. On this aspect, Bitcoin and Litecoin are tied

Coin Supply

The total number of Litecoin in supply has room for up to 84 million coins, whereas Bitcoin has a lower limit of 21 million coins. Although both networks have coin supply caps, there is much value to be gained from Litecoin’s higher coin supply.

Learn more: Is Litecoin Decentralized?

Is Litecoin Tied To Bitcoin?

No, Litecoin doesn’t have a tie to Bitcoin. 

Known as a lite version of Bitcoin, LTC only copies the Bitcoin source code. So, Litecoin has many similarities to Bitcoin but is not dependent on Bitcoin.

Learn more: Is Litecoin A Stablecoin?

Can Litecoin Surpass Bitcoin?

No particular evidence suggests a future where Litecoin overthrows Bitcoin. However, Litecoin still remains one of the best alternatives to Bitcoin. 

For example, a faster transaction speeds, a less complex algorithm, and a higher coin supply limit can potentially propel Litecoin to the same value as Bitcoin. 

Why Is Litecoin So Much Cheaper Than Bitcoin?

LTC is primarily cheaper because it has lower market demand than Bitcoin. But there are other reasons for this, too.

Consumer Perspective

Most investors assume that assets with higher price tags hold higher values. So, an investor will want to be part of Bitcoin than Litecoin in this case. 

Network Security

Hashrate is a significant determinant of the size of any cryptocurrency. A token that holds a higher hash rate is more secure as more people have to participate. A more substantial hash rate also leads to a higher market value of 1 BTC over 1 LTC. 

Adoption

As the gold of cryptocurrency, people got used to BTC and adopted it for its value. On the other hand, the value of less adopted LTC is dependent on an equilibrium between supply and demand. 

Learn more: Is Litecoin Eco Friendly?

How Many Litecoins Are Left?

As I write this article, there is a total of 13,447,294 LTC coins left and 70,552,706 LTC coins in supply.

Who Created Litecoin Cryptocurrency?

Charlie Lee, also known as “Chocobo”, is the founder and creator of Litecoin (LTC). Charlie is a former holder of several qualifications.

He worked for Google as a software engineer, computer scientist, and pioneer in Bitcoin mining. Also, he played the engineering director role from 2015 to 2017 at Coinbase. 

At the time of this article, he is the managing director of the Litecoin Foundation.

Is Litecoin Built On Ethereum?

No. Litecoin isn’t built on Ethereum

Litecoin runs on the Litecoin blockchain technology. Ethereum, on the other hand, is a platform that hosts Ether, the cryptocurrency.

While Litecoin’s sole purpose was to introduce faster transactions, Ethereum came in to solve the trilemma of scalability, security, and decentralization.

Can Litecoin Be Mined?

Yes. You can mine Litecoin. 

Here are actionable steps you can take to mine Litecoin:

  • Buy sturdy hardware. Get high performance devices that excel at producing LTC blocks. The best equipment would be the ASIC computers. However, they’re expensive, and they often run out of stock in stores.
  • Download Litecoin mining software and install it on your computer. Ensure it can run the Scrypt algorithm. 
  • Alternatively, you can participate in a mining pool. You can use Poolin, LitecoinPool.org, f2pool, or BTC.com. 
  • Configure your hardware. Set your hardware to connect to the servers of your chosen mining pool.
  • Register your address. You need an LTC wallet to receive rewards for participating in LTC mining.
  •  Begin mining. After ensuring your account and hardware are in place, check whether you can track your earnings, hash rate, or payout. The listed mining pools give you an interface to monitor all this. 

Learn more: Is Litecoin Easy To Mine?

What Is The Easiest Cryptocurrency To Mine?

With the emergence of many cryptocurrencies in the industry, various consensus mechanisms help produce blocks for different cryptos. Today, there isn’t any one coin that is the easiest to mine. 

Here are some of the easiest coins to mine. 

  • Bytecoin
  • Monero
  • Vertcoin
  • Beam 
  • Dogecoin
  • Ethereum

Final Thoughts

Litecoin is a hard fork of Bitcoin. It shares some features with Bitcoin, but was created to resolve the challenges posed by the bitcoin network. Litecoin isn’t essentially better than Bitcoin, although it solves some problems in a better way than Bitcoin does.