Before there was Shiba Inu coin, there was Dogecoin. And long before Dogecoin, there was Bitcoin, which kicked off the cryptocurrency craze over a decade ago.
Experts say it’s impossible to know which cryptos will explode in the way those coins have, since it’s mostly a matter of generating excitement online. But there are two factors that can give a cryptocurrency the "it" factor: Capturing public imagination with a gimmick like a cute dog (like Dogecoin) and offering a potential technological advance, crypto traders will rush to adopt (like Ethereum).
While it's never easy, trying to spot new technology, they say, at least gives you something concrete to go on.
So, which crypto will skyrocket next? No one knows for sure. But we asked crypto experts from the founder of a Bitcoin ATM company to a technology professor researching digital currencies to name some of the most exciting contenders.
Here are the cryptos they say may have the potential to take off.
If you’re familiar with the space, you’ve likely heard of Solana, since it’s in the top 10 of the largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. But experts say there is room to grow.
Solana is powerful because of its approach to DeFi, and its unique proof of stake mechanics, says Eric Schiffer, chief executive of the private equity firm, the Patriarch Organization. The technology behind this is a bit complicated, but basically decentralized finance (or DeFi) is a form of finance that aims to eliminate third parties like banks and brokerage firms from financial transactions. Some advocates even claim DeFi is the future of finance.
Proof of stake refers to a mechanism by which people can mine new coins, and it’s a more environmentally-friendly way of doing so than the system Bitcoin uses.
Avalanche, along with Solana, is another example of a crypto that has a clear purpose, as opposed to meme coins like Dogecoin, which have no purpose at all, says Hanna Halaburda, an associate professor at NYU Stern School of Business.
Avalanche is one of the many projects seeking to “unseat Ethereum," as one of the most widely used blockchain platforms, according to the cryptocurrency exchange Gemini. A Blockchain, part of the technology underlying cryptocurrencies, stores information — like the history of cryptocurrency transactions — in a way that ensures no one individual or group has control of that information. Ethereum is the most-used blockchain network.
A $220 million fund was just launched to fund the development of Avalanche, which boasts of much faster transactions than Ethereum (4,500 transactions per second versus Ethereum's roughly 13 per second).
Want to quit your day job and play video games to make money? Well, technically, you can. In the game Axie Infinity, players buy monsters and have them fight one another to win tokens, which can then be turned back into real money. During the pandemic, many Filipinos turned playing into their full-time jobs.
“If you’re looking for the next token that can go up 15,000%, you’re probably looking at the gaming sector and virtual world sector,” says Shidan Gouran, founder of Gulf Pearl, a merchant bank and advisory in the blockchain sector.
Meme coins rely on internet hype and therefore it's near impossible to predict which ones will take off. But the meme coin Samoyedcoin has piqued the interest of Daniel Polotsky, founder of CoinFlip, a Bitcoin ATM company.
Like Dogecoin, it bears the face of a cute dog and is intended to be a lighthearted and fun ambassador for Solana, Polotsky says. Because Samoyed exists on the Solana blockchain, it benefits from transaction times of less than one second, making it much faster than both Dogecoin and Shiba Inu, he adds. (Dogecoin runs on its own blockchain and Shiba Inu token runs on the Ethereum blockchain.)
Fetch.ai is a decentralized machine learning platform for applications like asset trading, according to CoinBase. For example, one of Fetch.ai's applications helps users of the crypto exchange Uniswap automate their trading.
FET is an Ethereum-based token that powers Fetch.ai. It’s gained more than 1,500% in the last year.
Fetch.AI is using its technology to back real-world applications, says Ahmed Shabana, managing partner for Parkpine Capital.