Most cryptocurrencies are highly volatile. You shouldn’t enter this market unless you can handle a great deal of turbulence and uncertainty. Among the 100 largest cryptocurrencies (by market cap) one year ago, only 74 names remain on that list today. Go back one more year and you’ll find the number of survivors dropping to 58. In other words, many promising cryptocurrencies don’t have what it takes to stick around for a couple of years — let alone the long haul, where lasting fortunes are made.
However, some of the long-term crypto survivors do have the power to create life-changing wealth. And that group goes beyond the usual suspects of Bitcoin (BTC -1.26%) and Ethereum (ETH -1.56%). Some smaller names with less headline-building fanfare are just as interesting as the oldest and largest crypto leaders.
I’m particularly impressed by the long-term value I see in Polkadot (DOT -4.18%), Basic Attention Token (BAT -5.93%), and XR P (Ripple) (XRP -2.44%). These cryptos have already built robust business models and real-world use cases, and you should give them a closer look anytime their token prices are running low.
Decentralizing the internet: Polkadot and Web3
Polkadot is a next-generation blockchain technology that’s poised to change the game in the long run.
It’s all about Web3, which is the decentralized version of the internet. Polkadot allows for different blockchain networks to talk to each other and work together, instead of being siloed and separated like they are now. This opens up a whole new world of possibilities for collaboration and innovation in the blockchain space.
And the governance structure of Polkadot is pretty cool too. It’s decentralized, which means that the community gets a say in how the network develops. This is important because it allows for a more inclusive and democratic process in the evolution of technology. There are also processes to help developers fund and create new so-called parachains to Polkadot, adding new functionality and features over time.
So, in a nutshell, Polkadot is a valuable and useful cryptocurrency because it has the potential to revolutionize the way that different blockchain networks interact with one another and enable the Web3 ecosystem to thrive. That’s a vision for the long haul, and I don’t mind picking up some Polkadot tokens on the cheap every now and then — like right now, for example. The digital lifeblood of the Web3 vision is currently trading 88% below the all-time highs of October 2021.
Ripple: Revolutionizing international transfers
XRP, also known as Ripple, is a digital asset that’s got a lot of potential for the long run. This cryptocurrency is all about making international money transfers faster and cheaper. With XRP tokens on the RippleNet blockchain network, you can send money to your friends and family in different countries, but instead of waiting for days it only takes a few seconds. Transaction fees are also minimal, at fractions of a cent. The SWIFT international banking system typically charges around 4% for border-crossing payments.
Now, Ripple is different from other cryptocurrencies. It’s centralized, under the control of a company called Ripple Labs, and not decentralized like Bitcoin or Ethereum. That’s a deal-breaker for some crypto investors. However, I’m not hanging around the crypto market to make grand statements about the perfect project structure and control system — if Ripple’s management system works, I’m still buying it.
Ripple’s technology is powerful and already has some big players on board. Banks and other big financial institutions are using Ripple’s technology to make money transfers faster and cheaper. The more financial institutions adopt Ripple, the more valuable the XRP token will become.
The cryptocurrency’s most troublesome challenge right now is the long-running lawsuit brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in December of 2020. However, even a downright draconian outcome in that legal battle will be an upgrade from the current state of muddled confusion around the legal and regulatory status of cryptocurrencies in general.
In the meantime, Ripple is doing plenty of business in non-US markets. This innovative and useful cryptocurrency is here to stay.
So, in a nutshell, XRP (Ripple) may be a good long-term investment because it’s a promising technology that aims to revolutionize cross-border payments and has a strong team and partnerships that could drive its adoption and value in the future. And token prices are currently down 89% from the peak value in January 2018.
Basic Attention Token: Taking a BAT to the advertising market
Let’s swing back to the Web3 discussion again. If Polkadot is a wide-ranging bet on the entire future of decentralized content distribution, Basic Attention Token is a more focused play on next-generation advertising tools.
If you know BAT at all, it’s probably because of its native integration into the Brave internet browser. This browser blocks unwanted trackers and ads to provide a faster and more private browsing experience. At the same time, Brave users can choose to let the browser show a different set of ads where ad revenues are shared between the marketing network and the web user. You get paid for your attention to ads, and the payment is made in BAT tokens.
This creates a win-win situation where users get a better browsing experience, and content creators get paid directly by their audience. Again, this is right in line with Web3 and its decentralized ideas.
And that’s not all. The BAT-powered advertising network is also reaching out beyond the Brave browser, giving publishers access to a different ad network with more engaged web users.
So BAT looks like an innovative cryptocurrency with staying power because it’s not just a token but a revolutionary technology that aims to change the way we think about online advertising. Giving users more control over their browsing experience and cutting out middlemen creates a more efficient and fair ecosystem.
And yes, BAT tokens are also trading far below their all-time record prices. The current price is an 86% discount from the apex value in November 2021.
Anders Bylund has positions in Basic Attention Token, Bitcoin, Ethereum, Polkadot, and XRP. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Basic Attention Token, Bitcoin, and Ethereum. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.