NEO, also known as the “Chinese Ethereum” has seen a massive rise in the past few days. Although the crypto market isn’t doing as well lately with many currencies suffering, NEO has seen a double-digit percentage increase in the past 24 hours by rising 20%.
This recent surge makes NEO the 8th largest cryptocurrency in the world with a market cap of $11.7 billion (as of this writing). The total market cap of the cryptocurrency market has fallen to $711 billion which was at its peak close to $800 billion just a few weeks ago.
At the start of the year when altcoins such as Ripple started to decline, Bitcoin had started recovering from the massive plunge it took at the end of 2017. It had crossed the $17,000 mark again but its down again this week.
Many altcoins surged towards the end of 2017 however, many of them have also seen a massive correction in price. One of the major altcoins to have seen such a major decline was Ripple. However, Ripple has still maintained a lot of its value. Tron, on the other hand, has suffered immensely after allegations of plagiarized whitepapers. However its owner remain optimistic about the future and has announced another partnership with a Chinese company he calls “Chinese Netflix’; he plans to announce more partnership and remains cool about the situation.
Noe the cryptocurrency of the week, however, is NEO. In a span of a few days, it has rapidly surged to become part of the top 10 cryptocurrencies in the world. Only a week ago, NEO was at $101. Fast forward 7 days and now it’s currently priced at $181 which is currently its all-time high.
What is NEO?
Formerly known as Antshares, NEO is the first open source, decentralized cryptocurrency in China. Like many cryptocurrencies, it also uses the blockchain network. Apart from the NEO cryptocurrency itself, it also has another token called GAS. NEO aims to work as a network for the “smart economy“. What is a smart economy? It’s better to use NEO’s take on the smart economy to understand their objectives:
“Goal: To be the vanguard in the effort of building a smart economy.
SMART ECONOMY= Digital Assets + Digital Identity + Smart Contracts”
Many people call it the “Chinese Ethereum” because it’s quite similar to Ethereum. Both currencies want to work for the internet, namely for Decentralized Applications, smart contracts, and ICOs. Ethereum already has the headstart with many companies having their ICOs in Ethereum. What sets NEO and Ethereum apart in their approach is that Ethereum is working to satisfy current demand whereas NEO, with its concept of the smart economy, is looking to develop a platform keeping in mind the future demand.
The people behind NEO
The core team consists of the founder Da Hongfei, the co-founder (and core developer) Zhang Zhengwen, the Secretary general- Tao Rongqi and other developers and contributors.
What’s so special about NEO?
When the whole market saw a major correction in value, NEO was the one that surged the most, why is that? Perhaps NEO’s price was also being corrected as it might have deserved a higher price compared to what it was before. There are a few possible explanations regarding NEO’s increase, with most of them being things that set NEO apart from the rest.
Many firms have their Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) in Ethereum. However, firms are now turning to NEO as it is much faster than Ethereum with no transaction fee (unlike Ethereum). The GAS tokens (separate from the NEO tokens) of NEO will be used for the ICOs. Holders of NEO also earn dividends from the use of GAS tokens so it’s a win-win for the investors as well as the firms.
One of the biggest drawbacks of Ethereum comes with its programming language. Many developers aren’t familiar with Solidity (Ethereum’s primary language) so they need to first familiarize themselves with the language before they get to work. However, NEO is written in far more well-known languages such as C# and Java, which are the fundamental languages almost every programmer has to learn before getting their qualifications. Overall those languages are easier to work with compared to Ethereum’s programming language.
NEO, although with a limited supply has a better technology than that of Ethereum and it’s only a matter of time before it becomes the main cryptocurrency for ICOs and smart contracts. It also has the support of giants like Microsoft which clearly show that there is something special about this cryptocurrency that even Microsoft is also interested. Moreover, its price movements speak for themselves with many people realizing the true value of NEO. Although the price shock could also be due to speculative reasons, there’s no denying the potential NEO has for the future.
With NEO now being the 8th largest cryptocurrency in the world, it will surely attract more attention than it has done before which will only help the currency further as more people learn about it. It clearly has the technological advantage over Ethereum thus earning the nickname of “Ethereum Killer”.
With NEO’s blockchain having the ability to link up with private and business oriented blockchains, and the ability to have multple decentralized applications under its platform, it has the potential to become a smart economy.