Ethereum VS Bitcoin: Which one has better chances?

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Bitcoin’s history of dominating the cryptocurrency industry is well known. After it was launched in 2009, the coin retained a market dominance of 80% or high up to July 2017, when Ethereum’s remarkable growth became undeniable. Today, Ethereum controls 28% of the industry while Bitcoin controls 38%.

Many crypto traders believe that Bitcoin and Ethereum will remain the most dominant cryptocurrencies for a long time. However, investors differ as to which between the two have the better chances of remaining dominant in the long-term. This article compares the two coins, their platforms and their chances of leading the rest of the industry.

Differences between Bitcoin and Ethereum

Factor Bitcoin Ethereum
Date Created 2009 2015
Market Cap $128.957 billion $60.262 billion
Total Supply 21 million 81 million
Block time 15 seconds 10 minutes
Purpose currency Platform coin
Scalability Low High
Price May 26/18 $7,562.51 $604

Competitors or Complementary Coins

Assuming that there can only be one leader in the cryptocurrency world is to admit that both Bitcoins and Ethereum are competitors. But are the two coins competitors? Bitcoin has its own unique purpose that is different from that of Ethereum.

  • Bitcoin- designed as a payment protocol and a decentralized digital currency meant to be free of political influence
  • Ethereum- centered on blockchain-based computer programing of decentralized applications and smart contracts

Ideally, both Bitcoin and Ethereum were designed for specific purposes. Those who support this argument say that both Bitcoin and Ethereum have equal chances of achieving great success in their respective niches. As such, it’s not logical to say one coin has higher chances of success compared to the other.

However, as logical as the idea of the two coins complement each other is, crypto experts note that Bitcoin and Ethereum are constantly competing against each other.

How Bitcoin and Ethereum Exchange Roles

  • Both have become Currencies

Of the two,Bitcoin was developed to be a payment protocol and a currency for goods and services just like the US dollar. However, Ethereum is these days accepted as a payment currency as well.

With ShapeShift API increasingly becoming popular among merchants, Ethereum is breaking tradition to become a Bitcoin competitor. Read this article to learn if

  • Bitcoin Smart Contracts

Ethereum founded the idea of smart contracts. In fact, Ethereum’s biggest innovation apart from its dAPP platform is offering smart contracts. The smart innovation enables traders to complete settlements using a trustless solution where cryptos and cash is locked and only released after both traders complete their end of the deal.

As smart contracts become a popular phenomenon, some Bitcoin enthusiasts floated the idea of introducing them to the Bitcoin protocol. The platform is the most popular service offering smart contracts for Bitcoin traders.

Bitcoin versus Ethereum’s Chances of Success

Speed of Transactions

With both Bitcoin and Ethereum overlapping in the types of services they offer, speed will be one of the underlying factors in determining the better coin of the two. With an average transaction time of 15 minutes, Ethereum is the clear winner.

Bitcoin has a transaction speed that averages 30 minutes in May 2018. At times, like February 2018, bitcoin’s average transaction speed was 676 minutes; more than 400 times slower than Ethereum’s average.


One of the biggest weaknesses in the Bitcoin protocol lies in its inability to handle requests. While Ethereum is designed to handle fifteen transactions per second,Bitcoin can only handle seven. On average, Bitcoin handles 3 transactions per second, which leads to massive delays when there is great demand for the network.

In mid-2017, there was interest to implement solutions that could increase Bitcoin’s scalability, but the idea was rejected by the mining pools responsible for controlling changes on the Bitcoin protocol. This gives Ethereum the opportunity to attract wider adoption knowing that it is scalable. Frankly, Ethereum is far from being the most scalable network, but it’s better off when compared to Bitcoin.


Both Ethereum and Bitcoin are blockchain networks. They have distributed public ledgers that are harder to hack than any average network. However, Bitcoin is more popular and has more nodes distributed around the world.

If it came to controlling 51% of either blockchain, Bitcoin would be harder to hack. Of course, hacking Ethereum is still not an easy task, but it would probably cost double the resources needed to take control of Bitcoin when compared to Ethereum.

Market Supply

Can a crypto coin’s market supply influence its success rate? Technically, yes. Cryptocurrencies that are too available in supply tend to have less market demand compared to finite crypto coins like Ethereum and Bitcoin. Ethereum has a maximum supply of 84 million while Bitcoin’s market supply is 21 million.

Considering that Bitcoin’s supply has already reached 75% of its total possible supply, its value is likely to continue rising. Ethereum, on the other hand, has a much higher supply rate. In the future,Bitcoin’s price might become too expensive to attract regular users. This will leave Ethereum as the affordable coin that traders want to use.

Future Development

As it stands, either Bitcoin or Ethereum can assume the mantle of the cryptocurrency of the future. Bitcoin is still more dominant, but Ethereum’s proactive development team might lead to its success.

Where Bitcoin’s developers tend to be conservative in accepting changes, Ethereum has already rolled out plans to introduce proof of stake mining algorithm. This will eliminate the need for expensive miners and may help scale the network.

Ethereum is not a perfect cryptocurrency network yet, but it has the means and the platform to beat Bitcoin. The Ethereum decentralized app platform is one of its biggest assets. If it’s able to scale its network to handle more decentralized apps at a go and if the development team can help dAPP coders developers secure, zero-bugs apps, the network will become a giant network in the future.

In Conclusion

Ethereum has often been viewed as the better cryptocurrency network for the future. However, Ethereum’ lagging scalability issues, inability to handle competition and expensive smart contracts put off a lot of developers and dAPP investors.

Bitcoin, on the contrary, already enjoys massive adoption. Despite that, the network faces lots of obstacles in its effort to dominate the industry. Until these hurdles, including scalability and mining power consumption problems, are solved, the cryptocurrency network won’t remain dominant for long.