In this comparison of Bitcoin Cash vs Litecoin, we will dive deep into the various elements that make a crypto project a worthwhile investment. We will examine items such as; technology, team, utility, traction, and threats.
With that said, let’s jump right into it…
More than a decade ago Satoshi Nakamoto envisioned a new type of digital asset that would revolutionize the exchange of value. He called it Bitcoin, a digital currency that is not controlled or influenced by any single entity. Blockchain technology made Satoshi’s visions a reality. It was a decentralized, secure and transparent network of trust that powered the bitcoin network. However, as the network grew exponentially scalability became a major concern.
Finding a scalability solution is a challenging endeavor under a decentralized environment. This evolved to what we call now the Blockchain Trilemma, a challenge for decentralization, security, and scalability. It is the difficulty of implementing an effective solution to one of these features without negatively affecting the other. Even more challenging is to achieve consensus on one solution to address the problem.
Some Bitcoin community members had the foresight to take action early on. This has lead to the creation of alternative cryptocurrencies collectively known as Altcoins. In 2011, a computer scientist from Google and Coinbase by the name of Charlie Lee created Litecoin. An Altcoin based on bitcoin’s code with several modifications. These changes enabled it to achieve cheaper transaction fees and faster transaction times while offering the same level of security bitcoin has to offer.
Six years later in 2017, a contentious hard fork created Bitcoin Cash (BCH). It was a result of a disagreement within the bitcoin community to address the scalability issues of Bitcoin. The supporters of the said fork relegated to the name of Bitcoin cash, unable to gain majority support from the community. Essentially, Bitcoin Cash is Bitcoin with bigger block sizes and other protocol improvements. These changes enable it to achieve higher transaction bandwidth and lower transaction fees.
Bitcoin Cash vs Litecoin: Which is better?
To achieve mass adoption of cryptocurrencies, crypto developers should be able to tie the utility of their digital currencies to the day-to-day activities of the common people. This is what Bitcoin (BTC) is trying to achieve, to enable people to use crypto the same way they use cash. However, the success of Bitcoin proved to be its Achilles heel as its network is unable to cope up with its usage. The late 2017 and early 2018 BTC bull run is a glaring example of this weakness. Due to network traffic, the time to process transactions and transaction fees increased exponentially, leaving a lot of dissatisfied Bitcoin users.
At the same time, this was a breakthrough moment for alternative coins that scales better than Bitcoin. The increasing occurrence of these network congestions intensified the need to find an alternative to BTC. Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin have emerged as top alternatives as crypto electronic cash. Let us take a closer look at these BTC alternatives and determine for ourselves which one is better.
In considering the debate between Bitcoin Cash vs Litecoin, to determine which one is a better alternative to Bitcoin we will compare the different aspects of each project. Specifically its team, technology & upgrades, telemetry & utility, traction & tactics , and threats & triggers. Following each of these comparisons will be an assessment to choose which one wins the section. Afterwhich we will tally the results of each section and determine which between the to is indeed better.
We believe that the success of any project depends greatly on the team behind it. Thus, we always start our comparison of blockchain projects with its team. In this section, we will compare the people behind each project as well as the main organization that is backing them. In addition, we will check if they have a clear and sound plan to achieve their goals.
Team Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
First, we look into the Bitcoin Cash’s team. The incumbent Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is actually Bitcoin Cash ABC (BCH ABC) which forked from the original version of BCH. We believe that the split was good for the BCH community. It presented an opportunity to distance itself from Craig Wright who raised to notoriety for claiming he is Satoshi Nakamoto without solid proof. More importantly, the upgrade enabled BCH to process non-cash transactions such as smart contracts and oracle prediction services.
We believe that split has not diminished the developmental capacity of the BCH team. In fact, this opened a whole new world of possibilities for BCH. Having the backing of Roger Ver and Jihan Wu almost guarantees further success. Most of the developers and contributors of BCH came from Bitcoin. This should be a good indicator of the capacity of the BCH team to deliver. Looking at the road map of BCH it is evident that they have a clear and defined path to execute their plan.
Team Litecoin (LTC)
On the other hand, the Litecoin Team has much less drama on their side. Since its 8 years of existence, it never had to deal with a contentious fork. Nor did it see much in-fighting within its community. This led us to believe that Litecoin Team is a closely-knit community. Furthermore, we have observed that most Litecoin development initiatives take their queue from Charlie Lee. This is on top of the notion that Litecoin seems to function as a test chain for the future implementation of Bitcoin technology. It gained this reputation due to its faster adoption of technologies aimed to improve Bitcoin.
Unfortunately, we were not able to find a clear and defined roadmap for Litecoin. The nearest substitute for this is a blog-post from Andrew Yang, shared on the website of the Litecoin Foundation last year. It stated four things to look forward to in 2019 for Litecoin. This was followed by a tweetstorm from Charlie Lee detailing the current effort to increase the fungibility of Litecoin by including the feature of confidential transactions.
Team Winner: Bitcoin Cash
We chose Bitcoin Cash because we feel it is the more active and resilient team between the two. Disagreements and occasional dramas are proofs of passionate participation. It also shows the intense engagement of the Team and the community. This is not to say the Litecoin team lacks commitment and dedication. We are just saying Bitcoin Cash beats them in terms of intensity.
Both teams are highly competent professionals with a history of successful endeavors. The success of Bitcoin for Bitcoin Cash developers and Litecoin’s popularity are clear testaments of this. They are also backed by very influential people that helped shaped the cryptocurrency landscape. Roger Ver for Bitcoin cash and Charlie Lee for Litecoin. Moreover, they have the backing of foundations that have developmental oversight of each of the projects.
So in considering the teams behind Bitcoin Cash vs Litecoin, this round goes to Bitcoin Cash.
II. Technology & upgrades
The next important aspect of any project is its technology. The underlying technology of both projects is very similar to Bitcoin (BTC). However, their developers introduced changes into the codebase of BTC to make them more scalable and functional. The existence and relevance of these two BTC alternatives are after all stems from Bitcoin’s inability to scale.
Bitcoin Cash Technology
The technology of Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is essentially the same as Bitcoin. If fact, some people in the crypto space believe it is a better version of BTC envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto. Bitcoin Cash opted to increase its maximum block size to 8 MB and later increased it to 32 MB. It is 32x larger than Bitcoin’s and Litecoin’s which have 1 MB each. On the other hand, Bitcoin developers chose to support SegWit2x as a scalability solution and seem to peg their hopes in 2nd layer scaling solutions like the Lightning Network.
As a result Bitcoin Cash can handle more transactions than Bitcoin given the same amount of time. If all transaction parameters are the same, BCH should be able to do 32x more transactions. Due to a smaller pool of pending transactions, BCH users need not pay as much to get their transactions confirmed. Apart from this, BCH will now be able to do smart contracts and oracle services since its last fork.
Litecoin Cash Technology
One can argue that Litecoin (LTC) is also a fork of Bitcoin (BTC) as it shares the same codebase. However, this cryptocurrency was not a result of a disagreement among developers. Litecoin seeks to be a lighter and faster version of Bitcoin. There are three essential differences between BTC and LTC. First, the maximum supply of LTC is 84M versus 21M of BTC. Second, LTC uses Scrypt as its hashing algorithm while BTC uses SHA-256. lastly, LTC’s block time is 2.5 minutes while BTC has 10 minutes. BTC’s and BCH’s specs are exactly the same except for its Block Size.
Litecoin has always played the role of a test chain for BTC. In fact, LTC activated segwit ahead of BTC. In addition, It also uses the Lightning Network (LN) as a second layer scalability solution. Moreover, Developments in LN allow atomic swaps between BTC and LTC network. LTC developers also planned to increase fungibility by incorporating Confidential Transaction technology. Finally, not to be outdone by Bitcoin Cash, Rootstock will include Litecoin support to add Ethereum-like smart contract functionality into Litecoin.
Technology Winner: Tie
Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin have different scaling solutions. Despite these different approaches both demonstrated the capacity to scale more compared to Bitcoin. As far as choosing which one is better in terms of current and planned technology remains debatable. In terms of future developments, each can match the offer of the other. We believe the scaling solutions of both projects are viable.
The technologies implemented by both Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin enable faster transaction times at a fraction of the cost using Bitcoin. Enabling them to function more of a currency compared to Bitcoin which is fast becoming more of a store of value. Both are more suitable for day-to-day transactions and thus the tie result.
III. Bitcoin Cash vs Litecoin: Telemetry & Utility
Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin derive their value on how effective they serve as a medium of exchange. Simply put, they need to be an effective way of payment for daily transactions. Their relevance relies on the fact that Bitcoin is unable to function as such. This is due to transaction latency and cost which goes beyond the tolerance threshold of your average consumer. Who would want to wait 10 minutes to consummate a transaction? No one would like to pay for a $3-10 USD transaction fee for a $1 USD transaction right?
Bitcoin Cash Telemetry & Utility
As far as a payment medium Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is a better option than Bitcoin (BTC). Transactions are processed faster with far fewer fees. This is the immediate result of being able to process more data per block. Moreover, BCH offers the same level of security of BTC as it shares the same consensus mechanism and hashing algorithm. They even the same block time of 600 seconds or 10 minutes. You can liken BCH to be an identical twin of BTC with a slightly different predisposition.
Litecoin Telemetry & Utility
If Bitcoin Cash is the identical twin of Bitcoin then you can liken Litecoin (LTC) to be their close cousin. They all share the same DNA but Litecoin does not resemble BTC as much. First, it increased its total supply to lessen the burden of users having to deal with decimal numbers. Second, it changed its hashing algorithm to Scrypt to be more resistant to specialized mining equipment. This serves as a deterrent to the centralization of mining activities. Finally, it has a faster block time of 150 seconds or 2.5 minutes compared to BCH and LTC.
Telemetry & Utility Winner: Bitcoin Cash
The winner of this round is Bitcoin Cash as it performed better as digital cash than Litecoin. Looking at the table below we can see that Bitcoin cash was able to process more transactions at a significantly lower cost. From August to October, Bitcoin cash was averaging 0.432 TPS, while LTC was processing half as much 0.204 TPS. Despite processing twice as many transactions as LTC, BCH’s average transaction cost is around $0.0029 USD during the same period. On the other hand, LTC was averaging $0.0237 USD which is around 8x more expensive than BCH. Lastly, the average value BCH moves are larger than LTC, $8,529 USD and $7,673 USD.
The only weakness of BCH in this round is the fact that it has a significantly bigger blockchain size than LTC. This can be interpreted as a higher computational load for BCH. Nonetheless, we see an increasing difficulty for BCH compared to LTC’s declining mining difficulty. This means more miners are interested in mining BCH rather than LTC. This brings us to the last point why we chose Bitcoin Cash— currently, it is a more secure network. Faster, cheaper and more secure, that sold us to Bitcoin Cash this round.
IV. Bitcoin Cash vs Litecoin: Traction & Tactics
Cryptocurrency projects may have all the talent and technology in the world but it will all go to waste if nobody uses them. That is why it is important to check Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin adoption. Mass adoption is perhaps the most important goal of any cryptocurrency project for its success. This holds true to Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Litecoin (LTC) as well. For this reason, there is a need to look into the traction of these two projects. Moreover, we need to identify what tactics they are using further increase their traction.
Bitcoin Cash Traction& Tactics
Being the identical twin of BTC has its perks. BCH is so similar to Bitcoin that it can be viewed as the more scalable BTC version. In fact, many crypto-related sites and services that support BTC almost always support BCH. In addition, significantly fewer transaction fees and faster transaction time makes is more appealing for consumers to use. The only major challenge for further adoption of BCH is perhaps the unwillingness of crypto community members who aligned themselves with the incumbent chain.
Litecoin Traction & Tactics
Contrary to BCH, Litecoin has generally been in good graces with the wider bitcoin community. It has taken a more pragmatic approach of being an alternative chain or a test chain for the bitcoin network. This helped create an amicable environment of co-existence between BTC and LTC. However, this lack of competitive drive may have negatively affected the ability of LTC to innovate and build its own brand.
Traction and Tactics Winner: Bitcoin Cash
Bitcoin Cash takes this round due to the following reasons. First, it is closely associated with the Bitcoin brand. The name alone makes a whole lot of difference as Bitcoin is the most recognizable brand in the world. This holds true even beyond the crypto space. Additionally, it has been actively marketing itself as superior digital cash to the incumbent BTC. This is backed with actual performance. As a result, an increasing number of people are using BCH as digital cash than BTC. Moreso than LTC.
In direct comparison with LTC, we can see that BCH is gaining more traction. We can see that BCH consistently processes more transactions than LTC, faster and cheaper. This is top of BCH’s total transaction count increasing at a faster rate than LTC. Which only means that more people are using BCH compared to LTC. We also observed that since the block rewards having of LTC, lesser miners are willing to mine LTC. If the trend continues it would severely affect the security of LTC’s network. This is contrary to BCH’s which has been steadily increasing.
V. Threats & Triggers
The last aspects that we will look into are threats and triggers of these two crypto projects. These are major events, updates, and upgrades, business partnerships or changing regulatory environments that may affect the price movement or development of a particular project. They serve as a catalyst to a major bull run or a barrier that the project needs to overcome. Threats and triggers are important factors due to the fickle nature of crypto markets where a single event can change the trajectory of crypto projects.
Bitcoin Cash Threats & Triggers
The previous sections show Bitcoin cash has a lot of good things happening for them. Measured against LTC, BCH has performed better. Moreover, the increasing mining difficult shows the continued confidence of miners to BCH. Albeit, the growing euphoria over the halving event of BTC and BHC next year might be at play here. For the short term, BCH holders may experience a “Binance effect” as Binance Chain released a BCH-pegged Binance token to support it on its platform.
In other news, Roger Ver acquired Japanese firm O3, this will introduce some interesting dynamics in the development of more BCH-based apps via the Bitcoin.com website. Finally, we believe the tokenization protocol of BCH will play a vital role in the growth of the BCH ecosystem. The continued improvement of the Simple Ledger Protocol (SLP), as well as the BCH protocol itself, will result in the creation of more valuable and useful BCH-based tokens.
Litecoin Threats & Triggers
The weeks leading up to the LTC halving event were one of the most exciting times for LTC in recent memory. However, after the halving event, the enthusiasm of crypto investors to LTC seems to have died down. As proof, miners have been showing a decreasing interest in mining LTC for the past three months. Moreover, prices of Litecoin continued As if that is not bad enough, the Litecoin Foundation has been experiencing financial problems and had to be supported by Charlie Lee to stay afloat.
The incoming Litecoin Summit might produce some interesting development in Litecoin space. This is an annual event where industry leaders, Litecoin developers, and supporters gathered together to discuss the future of Litecoin. It might be the event it needs to turn its fortunes around. Aside from this, it seems that the plan shared by Litecoin Foundation late last year is moving forward. Confidential Transactions is being integrated into Litecoin protocol with Litecoin MimbleWimble Extension Block Proposal.
Threats & Triggers Winner: Bitcoin Cash
It was not hard to see that that there are a lot more positive things going for Bitcoin Cash compared to Litecoin. Most important of all is the fact that our observations were corroborated by Bitcoin Cash’s measurable performance. Moreso with its current development plan progress. It is truly exciting times for Bitcoin Cash right now. However, we cannot dismiss LTC all together. There are several protocol improvements on the horizon. Only time will tell if these efforts will bear fruit, also remember, a significant event, development or change can turn any crypto projects around.
Bitcoin Cash vs Litecoin was an interesting comparison, however, it looks like Bitcoin Cash really beats Litecoin in every category. Rest assured that we have evaluated them objectively. If there is any consolation, we believe that the Litecoin community can improve and bounce back from this current slump, in fact, they have great plans ahead. They are a very resilient community that has passed the test of time. It is after all the 6th largest crypto in the world by market capitalization.
However, Bitcoin Cash is currently performing better than LTC in every aspect. The momentum is currently with Bitcoin Cash right now and the market is reacting favorably. Furthermore, positive developments in terms of partnerships, business investments, and protocol upgrades seem to point that this momentum will carry over until next year, reaching boiling point at Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash halving event.
We hope you enjoyed this comparison of Bitcoin Cash vs Litecoin and found it useful!
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Jesus Cedeño is a certified doctor turned cryptocurrency expert, writer, and investor who lives in New York City. Jesús specializes in cryptocurrency product reviews, tutorials & technical analysis. Follow him on LinkedIn to stay up to date on his latest work on blockchain, decentralization and crypto investments.