Tether (USDT) is a cryptocurrency with a value meant to mirror the value of the U.S. dollar. The idea was to create a stable cryptocurrency that can be used like digital dollars. Coins that serve this purpose of being a stable dollar substitute are called “stable coins.” Tether is the most popular stable coin and even acts as a dollar replacement on many popular exchanges! According to their site, Tether converts cash into digital currency, to anchor or “tether” the value of the coin to the price of national currencies like the US dollar, the Euro, and the Yen. Like other cryptos it uses blockchain. Unlike other cryptos, it is [according to the official Tether site] “100% backed by USD” (USD is held in reserve). The primary use of Tether is that it offers some stability to the otherwise volatile crypto space and offers liquidity to exchanges who can’t deal in dollars and with banks (for example to the sometimes controversial but leading exchange Bitfinex). The digital coins are issued by a company called Tether Limited that is governed by the laws of the British Virgin Islands, according to the legal part of its website. It is incorporated in Hong Kong. It has emerged that Jan Ludovicus van der Velde is the CEO of cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex, which has been accused of being involved in the price manipulation of bitcoin, as well as tether. Many people trading on exchanges, including Bitfinex, will use tether to buy other cryptocurrencies like bitcoin. Tether Limited argues that using this method to buy virtual currencies allows users to move fiat in and out of an exchange more quickly and cheaply. Also, exchanges typically have rocky relationships with banks, and using Tether is a way to circumvent that. USDT is fairly simple to use. Once on exchanges like Poloniex or Bittrex, it can be used to purchase Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It can be easily transferred from an exchange to any Omni Layer enabled wallet. Tether has no transaction fees, although external wallets and exchanges may charge one. In order to convert USDT to USD and vise versa through the Tether.to Platform, users must pay a small fee. Buying and selling Tether for Bitcoin can be done through a variety of exchanges like the ones mentioned previously or through the Tether.to platform, which also allows the conversion between USD to and from your bank account.
Vertcoin is a decentralized currency owned by its users, a P2P cryptocurrency in the same vein as Bitcoin and Litecoin. Like its two predecessors, Vertcoin exists solely as a currency, and it uses proof of work to reach distributed consensus. Unlike its two predecessors, however, Vertcoin is dedicated to keeping its mining functions decentralized, so contrary to most PoW coins, it’s ASIC resistant. Branding their project as “The people’s coin,” Vertcoin’s team believes that ASIC resistance invites a fairer, more democratized currency for both users and miners. Along these lines, Vertcoin sports its very own 1-click miner, a program meant to make mining more accessible to the general public. The motivation of Vertcoin was the fact that Scrypt-based ASIC mining chip that is used to mine Scrypt derivative coins such as Litecoin and Dogecoin is entering the mass market. That coupled with strong mining pool causes the strength of a cryptocoin to drop as it becomes easier for a specific party to pull a 51% attack and even monopolize the network. Scrypt-Adaptive-Nfactor was created to address that issue. Vertcoin is zero premined and as of the current design, only 84 million coins would ever be created. Vertcoin is said to be the next generation of coins due to its unique hashing algorithm. There may be more altcoins created based on this hashing algorithm in order to defend their network against ASIC miners. Like most all pre-2015 coins, Vertcoin took a deathblow after Mt. Gox was hacked, throwing the entire market into a crypto winter. As such, it was relatively inactive until the revival last spring/summer. Since then, it has had steady climb up the market cap ladder. A 2014 International Business Times article mentions Vertcoin as a potential Bitcoin successor. The article notes that it ''hopes to offer an alternative. By taking the foundations of Bitcoin and making some adjustments, Vertcoin punishes miners who use powerful machines and work together in 'pools' to monopolise the mining market.'' On July 1, 2014, Vertcoin released a wallet supporting Stealth Address transactions. On December 13, 2014 (block 208301), Vertcoin forked from Scrypt-Adaptive-N proof-of-work function to Lyra2RE as a proactive defense against emerging Scrypt-Adaptive-N capable ASICs. On August 10, 2015 (block 347000), Vertcoin forked from Lyra2RE to Lyra2REv2 because a botnet was controlling more than 50% of the hashing power of Vertcoin network. On May 7, 2017, Segregated Witness (SegWit) feature was activated in the main network. SegWit update includes the Lightning Network technology that was also demonstrated in action during the same day.'