Ever since it was first released to the public in January 2009, Bitcoin has been the leading player in the cryptocurrency market. It was the first decentralized cryptocurrency, meaning its advantage comes from it being the first product to make it to the market.
Since then, it has remained the most popular, most talked about, highest valued, and most capitalized cryptocurrency on the market. Despite this, there being several intended and accidental forks that have created multiple versions of Bitcoin, supposedly with benefits around the speed of processing transactions. However, the original Bitcoin’s dominance remains unchallenged.
In 2017 and early 2018, Litecoin looked to be a contender for knocking Bitcoin off its perch, but it has since seen its value and market capitalization drop dramatically as investors look to other tokens.
Another challenger was Ethereum, a cryptocurrency that also provides a platform for the decentralized execution of applications. It even operates as the backbone for other cryptocurrencies, including rising stars like MakerDAO.
It reached a peak price of $1,386 for a single ETH in January 2018 but dropped as low as $83 by December 2018. It hasn’t recovered from this, having settled around the $150-200 mark for the last year.
That hasn’t put cryptocurrency enthusiasts though, many are still looking to get started with Ethereum crypto, either in addition to Bitcoin or as an alternative to the market leader.
During this meteoric rise, many cryptocurrency commentators were predicting an event they’d named “The Flippening”. This was going to be the point where Etherum overtook Bitcoin as the highest valued and most capitalized cryptocurrency in the world.
Articles on CoinDesk and even Forbes were published, discussing when this might happen and what it would mean for the cryptocurrency market. One company went as far as creating a website called Flippening Watch to track the price of altcoins against Bitcoin. It’s since fallen into a state of disrepair, with some functionality broken and its blog not being updated since 2017.
This is a very visible example of the overblown hype around “The Flippening” that ultimately failed to materialize.
Market Capitalization is Irrelevant
In traditional investing, market capitalization is important. It shows the total value of a company if all of its issued shares were to be sold at the current price. However, for a cryptocurrency, this is a mostly meaningless metric. After all, there’s no similar measurement for other currencies or even gold.
Therefore, it’s difficult to even establish a metric for how one cryptocurrency could overtake another. However, if we do look at market capitalization, there doesn’t seem much chance of a “Flippening” happening any time soon.
More to Ethereum
Additionally, there’s more to Ethereum than just a cryptocurrency. It’s a large computer network that can be used for decentralized apps and even allows developers to create their own cryptocurrencies on top of its blockchain.
It, therefore, already has more value to the cryptocurrency and blockchain world, regardless of its sale price.
Will it ever compete with Bitcoin for fame and token price? Probably not in the near future. Does that matter? Probably not.