Ethereum is currently the second largest crypto token in the market. Unlike Bitcoin, Ethereum brings utility beyond simple transactions through its smart contract functionality. However, even this innovative chain suffers from the limited number of transactions you can perform each second. This slows down the network and increases gas fees to astronomically high levels. This led to the birth of “Ethereum killers”, Cardano and Solana. But which one of them is the better buy in 2022?
What is Solana Crypto?
The Solana blockchain was launched in March 2020. The underlying technology is based on a 2017 whitepaper written by Anatoly Yakovenko.
Transactions on a blockchain usually do not take time into account. This can cause several issues during validation, where older transactions are added to blocks after new ones. Solana uses a unique consensus algorithm called Proof of History to solve this problem.
PoH synchronises time across the blockchain as another validation metric. It also makes transactions significantly faster than older blockchains. This boosts the efficiency and scalability of the blockchain. Solana also employs proof of stake for network security.
The native token of the blockchain is SOL. The Solana network allows you to stake your tokens. This secures the blockchain by adding more validators and rewarding them for their staked tokens.
Read more: How Does Solana Work?
What is Cardano Crypto?
Cardano was launched in 2017 by Charles Hoskinson, the co-founder of Ethereum. It is a third-generation blockchain that seeks to address the shortcomings of the first and second-generation blockchains that came before it. Cardano’s development and upgrades are based entirely on academic research.
The Cardano blockchain improves upon Bitcoin by adding support for “complex deal settlement” and decentralised applications (dApps). It also improves on the scalability concerns that plague Ethereum. Like other third-generation blockchains, it uses proof of stake rather than proof of work to secure the blockchain.
Read more: Proof of Work vs Proof of Stake
The development of Cardano is divided into five themes.
- Byron – Foundation
- Shelley – Decentralisation
- Goguen – Smart Contracts
- Basho – Scalability
- Voltaire – Governance
Work on each stage takes place simultaneously. However, updates are delivered sequentially to the blockchain.
Features of Cardano and Solana
|Launch Date||16th March 2020||27th September 2017|
|Supported uses||dApps, smart contracts and NFTs supported||dApps, smart contracts and NFTs supported|
|Consensus mechanism||Proof of History||Proof of Stake|
|Market Capitalisation||$10.8 Billion||$15.7 Billion|
Solana VS Cardano: Pros and Cons
While Solana and Cardano are similar in function, both have their own strengths and weaknesses.
|Pros of Solana||Pros of Cardano|
|Fast Transactions – Solana is one of the fastest blockchains on the market. Its proof-of-history mechanism allows it to reach over 50,000 transactions per second. On the other hand, Ethereum and Bitcoin are only able to reach 15 and 6 respectively.||Academic Research – Upgrades and development of the Cardano network are based on extensive academic research. Therefore, any changes brought to the network are among the best options in the industry.|
|Low Fees – Solana has incredibly low gas fees at just $0.00025 per transaction. When under load, older crypto tokens can hit gas fees higher than the value of the transaction.||100% Decentralisation – In 2021, the Cardano network reached a new milestone of decentralisation. This means that the community is responsible for all block production on the network. It is therefore diversified across several individuals and is unlikely to suffer a 51% attack.|
|Ease of Development – Solana uses Rust, a popular programming language with a wide range of uses. This makes it easy for new developers to adapt to the Solana ecosystem and create applications.||Hydra Scaling – Hydra is a layer-2 solution on the Cardano blockchain that will support off-chain transactions to dramatically increase transaction throughput. While it is still being worked on, it may soon push Cardano past 1 million transactions per second.|
|Cons of Solana||Cons of Cardano|
|Network Outages – Since its launch, Solana has experienced 7 network outages. While some are the result of DDoS attacks, others are due to congestion on the network.||Slow Development – While Cardano has been in development for several years now, it is still in its early stages. Development of the network is slow and frequent delays have pushed releases to the future.|
|Low Decentralisation – The Solana network has just over 1,000 validators. While anyone has the potential to become a validator on the network, this is harder in practice. The computing power necessary to run a Solana node is much higher than the average computer and can cost thousands of dollars each year to maintain.||No Longer Revolutionary – When Cardano was released, features such as multi-chain compatibility were still far in the future. However, today there are many other projects offering the same solutions. It is an increasingly crowded space and it may be difficult for Cardano to differentiate itself.|
Choosing Between Cardano and Solana
Cardano and Solana are both fantastic alternatives to older blockchains like Ethereum and Bitcoin. However, based on the information above, Solana seems to be in the lead. Given its significantly lower fees and higher transaction speed, it is currently ahead of the Cardano network.
Additionally, Solana is the second most popular blockchain for Non Fungible Tokens after Ethereum. It may be possible for Cardano to catch up to Solana in the future with more upgrades to the network. However, as of now, Solana seems to be the better option.