Dubbed “The Flippening” by cryptocurrency enthusiasts, the scenario in which Ethereum surpasses Bitcoin and becomes the number one cryptocurrency has been setting the community abuzz, as it seems it’s only a matter of time before the people’s money becomes number two.
Ethereum’s Ether token was worth about $8 in early January, and has surged almost 5,000% this year to reach a $412 all-time high, according to data from CoinMarketCap. Bitcoin, on the other hand, started 2017 at around $960 per coin, and has recently been flirting with the $3,000 mark, before dropping over 10% of its value.
Earlier this year, Bitcoin’s dominance was above 80%, but over time Ethereum and other altcoins have been growing at an incredible pace – so much so there are now 7 cryptocurrencies with a market cap above $1 billion. At the time of press, bitcoin’s dominance is at 40.48%, while Ethereum has already gotten to 31.87%.
Ethereum’s incredible surge has been fueled by various factors. Among them, the increasing popularity of Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) such as that of Brave browser’s Basic Attention Token (BAT), and the success of the Ethereum Enterprise Alliance’s adoption by various Fortune 500 companies, among others.
Right now, Ethereum’s total market cap is of $35.53 billion, while Bitcoin’s is at $44.74 billion – less than $10 billion separate the two cryptocurrencies. This is still a huge gap but, as Bruce Fenton put it on Twitter:
One of the top threads on the r/btc subreddit states that “The Flippening is Nigh”, and in it users are now discussing what went wrong for bitcoin nearly be losing its number one cryptocurrency spot to Ethereum, while pointing fingers at members of the community.
According to The Flippening website, however, Bitcoin is still above Ethereum in value and in search interest in Google, as everything else has already been overtaken. Ethereum’s tradng volumes were of $2.346 billion in the last 24h, while Bitcoins’ were of $2.282 billion, Ethereum has a larger number of nodes, and a larger number of transactions being processed.
At the time of press, Ethereum takes up 79.4% of Bitcoin’s market cap. On the r/ethtrader subreddit, Ethereum users are even being encouraged in one of the top threads not to troll bitcoiners.
Although most speculate that Bitcoin’s endless scaling debate is what’s stopping the cryptocurrency from escaping the situation, others believe that The Flippening will indeed occur, although only for a short period of time until Ethereum’s bubble bursts. Speculators believe that a lot of ICOs won’t deliver on what has been promised so far and that, as such, Ethereum prices will eventually crash.
Moreover, even if Bitcoin becomes the number two cryptocurrency, it still holds all of its potential. Bitcoin is being adopted by a large number of businesses and is already a legal currency in Japan, for example.
If Ethereum manages to overtake Bitcoin and become the number one cryptocurrency for a long time, this only means the impact its smart contracts can have is increasing and that blockchain technology is successfully changing the world.
Featured image from Shutterstock.