Litecoin is a virtual cryptocurrency that was created with the principal purpose of providing an alternative to fiat money and ultimately become a direct competitor of Bitcoin by attempting to address Bitcoin’s shortcomings. Litecoin is a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency and open-source software project released under the MIT/X11 license. Litecoin was an early bitcoin spinoff or altcoin, starting in October 2011. In technical details, Litecoin is nearly identical to Bitcoin. Litecoin was launched in October 2011 and is one of the oldest cryptocurrencies in existence. Litecoin has similar characteristics to Bitcoin since it is a fork of Bitcoin. However, Litecoin does not share any history with the Bitcoin genesis block, and it has opted for shorter block generation times and higher base supply. LTC are finite in number with 84 million supply limit. As of January 2021, 66.245 million LTC have already been mined. The price of 1 LTC in Dollar is $119.33.
Litecoin was released via an open-source client on GitHub on October 7, 2011 by Charlie Lee, a Google employee who later became Engineering Director at Coinbase. The Litecoin network went live on October 13, 2011. It was a source code fork of the Bitcoin Core client, differing primarily by having a decreased block generation time (2.5 minutes), increased maximum number of coins, different hashing algorithm (scrypt, instead of SHA-256), and a slightly modified GUI. During the month of November 2013, the aggregate value of Litecoin experienced massive growth which included a 100% leap within 24 hours.[better source needed]. In May 2017, Litecoin became the first of the top 5 (by market cap) cryptocurrencies to adopt Segregated Witness. Later in May of the same year, the first Lightning Network transaction was completed through Litecoin, transferring 0.00000001 LTC from Zürich to San Francisco in under one second.
A new block is generated on the Litecoin blockchain every 2.5 minutes (which is 4x as fast as Bitcoin) and as such leads to faster confirmation times when compared with Bitcoin. However, it uses a script for its proof-of-work algorithm, requiring significantly greater processing power. It was designed to provide fast, secure and low-cost payments. It is suitable for micro-transactions and point-of-sale payments.
Litecoin is one of the few cryptocurrencies with a wide variety of fiat trading pairs, and can be exchanged for U.S. dollars (USD), Korean won (KRW), euros (EUR) and more when you buy Litecoin. Some of the most prominent names include Huobi Global, Binance, Coinbase Pro, OKEx and Kraken.