Top Cryptocurrency Categories by Market Cap in 2024


As of 2024, the cryptocurrency market is diverse and can be divided into several major sectors, each with a significant market capitalization. Here are the main categories of cryptocurrencies by market capitalization:

A keeper of value

Primary example: Bitcoin (BTC)

Description: Cryptocurrencies are primarily used as a digital store of value, similar to digital gold. These assets are valued for their scarcity, safety and acceptance as a store of wealth.

Smart contract platforms

Primary examples: Ethereum (ETH), Binance Smart Chain (BNB), Solana (SOL), Avalanche (AVAX), Cardano (ADA)

Description: Blockchains that provide a decentralized platform for executing smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps). These platforms enable many use cases including DeFi, NFT and more.


Primary examples: Tether (USDT), USD Coin (USDC), Binance USD (BUSD), Dai (DAI)

Description: Cryptocurrencies are designed to maintain a stable value by being pegged to a fiat currency such as the US dollar. They are widely used for trading, remittances and as a safe harbour during market volatility.

Decentralized Finance (DeFi) Tokens.

Primary examples: Uniswap (UNI), Aave (AAVE), Maker (MKR), Compound (COMP)

Description: Tokens associated with DeFi protocols that offer financial services such as borrowing, lending and trading in a decentralized manner, without intermediaries.

Exchange Token

Primary examples: Binance Coin (BNB), OKB (OKB), Huobi Token (HT).

Description: Tokens issued by cryptocurrency exchanges. These tokens often provide users benefits such as discounted trading fees, management rights, and sometimes a share of the exchange’s revenue.

Privacy coins

Primary examples: Monero (XMR), Zcash (ZEC), Dash (DASH)

Description: Cryptocurrencies that focus on providing enhanced privacy and anonymity features. They use various techniques to hide transaction details and protect users’ identities.

Game and Metaverse Tokens

Primary examples: Decentraland (MANA), Axie Infinity (AXS), The Sandbox (SAND), Enjin Coin (ENJ)

Description: Tokens used within blockchain-based games and virtual worlds. These tokens often represent in-game assets, and virtual land, or can be used for transactions within the game ecosystem.

Utility tokens

Primary examples: Chainlink (LINK), Filecoin (FIL), VeChain (VET)

Description: Tokens that provide access to a product or service within the blockchain ecosystem. They often play a role in the operation of the network, for example when paying for services or as an incentive for participants.

These categories highlight the diverse applications and utility of cryptocurrencies beyond mere speculation, showing their role in finance, technology, privacy, entertainment and beyond.

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Disclaimer: Crypto products are unregulated as of this date in India. They could be highly volatile. At Unocoin, we understand that there is a need to protect consumer interests as this form of trading and investment has risks that consumers may not be aware of. To ensure that consumers who deal in crypto products are not misled, they are advised to DYOR (Do Your Own Research).