Bitcoin’s rival Solana (SOL) has just hit a new all-time high after a surprising price spike that has pushed its market value above $ 50 billion.
The cryptocurrency was trading at less than $ 3 in September 2020 and is now worth more than $ 180, having peaked at $ 194 on Tuesday.
It comes in the midst of a booming cryptocurrency market that has seen various alternative cryptocurrencies hit all-time highs in the last week, such as Cardano (ADA), HEX, and Fantom.
The so-called altcoin boom has seen the dominance of the bitcoin market shrink considerably since the beginning of the year.
In January 2021, bitcoin represented more than 70% of the cryptocurrency market. Today, its market capitalization is less than half of the market’s $ 2.25 trillion.
Solana now ranks as the seventh most valuable cryptocurrency by market capitalization, beating dogecoin this week.
It is touted as one of the leading platforms for smart contracts, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and other decentralized financial operations.
This makes it more like Ethereum – the world’s leading smart contract platform – than bitcoin, as the world’s first cryptocurrency is only used as a store of value and online currency.
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The creators of Solana describe it as “the fastest blockchain in the world” and “resistant to censorship”, in addition to having more than 400 projects built on its network.
A recently launched hackathon, which runs until next month, encourages developers to use their programmable blockchain to innovate new technologies and applications through Solana.
Some within the crypto industry see Solana as a genuine competitor to Ethereum, due to the efficiency of its network and the burgeoning market for NFT.
“Crypto will accelerate what will be the most socially impacting change of our lives,” said former Bloomberg project leader Hisham Khan, who has since launched the Aldrin platform by merging centralized and decentralized finance on the Solana network.
“Ethereum has influenced a wave of putting power back in the hands of the people, but so far it has been too expensive and exclusive, simply reflecting the wealth gap that we see in traditional finance. Solana is lowering entry barriers and encouraging mass adoption of the decentralized movement. “