When Bitcoin first launched in 2009, it was the first and only cryptocurrency in existence. The arrival of Bitcoin completely transformed how we all think about money, transactions, investment and global currency. 

Since 2009, Bitcoin has experienced its share of highs and lows as the market for crypto is particularly volatile. However, there are now thousands of other cryptos in existence which use the same blockchain technology as Bitcoin and others which have their own technological foundations that are unique.  

Some of the coins, like Ethereum, have become incredibly successful and rival Bitcoin in terms of popularity and stability. So, this all begs the question, is Bitcoin still the king of coins? 

Investment instrument or currency? 

When Bitcoin was first launched, it was intended to be used as a currency. For a few years, people only used Bitcoin as a currency to exchange for goods and services – although very few merchants would actually take Bitcoin. In the last 13 years, the primary use of Bitcoin has shifted from a currency to an investment instrument. 

Cryptos are now much more commonly used to make money via selling, trading and buying – and this includes Bitcoin. One way to think of this shift is to liken Bitcoin to gold. In the past, gold was likely used to make transactions, but now it is much easier and more profitable to use it as a trading instrument. 

Crypto fans enjoy trading with crypto because it is a diverse and largely unregulated market. This means that there are always new trades to make, and it is possible to make (and lose!) a significant amount of money through this volatile, unregulated trade. 

There have been some criticisms of the transition to using crypto primarily as an investment instrument because this move diminishes the social and geopolitical power which crypto has. However, until more platforms and industries begin adopting crypto, it is unlikely that they will be used as currency. 

Bitcoin’s use in other industries 

One industry which has started to incorporate crypto for payments is the online casino and sports betting industry. There are now a number of top Bitcoin casinos which accept payments made using the top coins, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple and Litecoin. The online casino industry is one of the most innovative and welcoming to the crypto community. 

Gamblers tend to like paying with crypto for a few reasons. One of the top reasons is security, as paying with crypto is generally more secure than paying with a bank card or bank transfer. There is also much more privacy associated with crypto payments because the user’s information is anonymized. This level of privacy is ideal in the online gambling industry because some people are using VPNs to access online casinos which are otherwise illegal in their region or country. 

Finally, some gamblers like using crypto to gamble because it provides a certain kind of doubled gambling effect. Buying and selling crypto right now is already a gamble because the market is incredibly volatile. Using a volatile currency to gamble means that you are gambling with both the currency itself and the currency you are using to gamble. 

Competing coins 

Bitcoin is still the king of coins because of the popularity, size and relative stability of the crypto. No other crypto has the same recognition and is as widely used as Bitcoin, and Bitcoin is certainly one of the more stable of the cryptos, although it does have its share of ups and downs. 

Other than Bitcoin, the biggest cryptos include Ethereum, Tether, USD Coin, Binance Coin and Bitcoin Cash, alongside a number of others. The market is so volatile that the list of the top 10 cryptos can change from one week to the next. You may see big names such as Filecoin, Cosmos, Avalanche and Solana there one week and gone the next. 

The story of Terra’s Luna Coin is one example of just how volatile the new coins can be, even if they claim to be “stablecoins”. This is why anyone who is trading in crypto should only invest what they can afford to lose and try to maintain a diversified portfolio for trading. 

For the foreseeable future, it looks as if Bitcoin will continue to be the top crypto in the world, but as this market is continually innovating and growing, this could change at any time. 

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