With all eyes on Bitcoin as it struggles to remain above $4,000, altcoins are seeing exponential growth.

Over the past month, Cardano (+61%), Stellar Lumens (+24%), EOS (+20%), Litecoin (+31%) and other top altcoins have surged. The second and third largest crypto assets by market cap, Ethereum and Ripple, have followed closely to Bitcoin, with all three seeing relatively stagnant growth below 5 percent.

Why are alts surging?

In a recent interview for Unchained, Vitalik Buterin, founder of Ethereum, addressed the possibility of Ethereum being taken over by another, younger crypto asset. He said he thought it was “inevitable” that Ethereum would lose some of its lead to another project. But which one? Vitalik said he favors Zcash and Dfinity but would “lose hope for humanity” if it were Tron who beat out Ethereum.

The host of Unchained Laura Shin also addressed the concerns from the community that the Ethereum 2.0 road map was too long. Both points bring to light a new reality for the leading crypto asset – competition.  As Ethereum continues to work towards its next major release, new altcoins are hitting the market, and existing projects are updating more rapidly.

For example, EOS, which saw double-digit growth this week, responded to a post from founder Dan Larimer that teased a major announcement slated for June. Without giving away specifics, Larimer said, “June will be biggest news since EOSIO announcement.” His hint at a new major release for EOS signaled a buying spree.

Cardano surged following the successful release of 1.5 mainnet. The update represented the final stages of the projects “Byron “ phase of development which included an intermediary consensus protocol, improved proof-of-stake consensus protocol and improvements to the project’s primary wallet, Daedalus.

From the price reactions, it looks like investors want to see projects innovating and growing quickly to meet the demands of the industry. Vitalik though isn’t as easily convinced of new projects and lofty promises of updates. "All of these things are harder than they seem, and even after launch, things are harder than they seem," said Vitalik.

Who will win the race the tortoise of the hair? Time will tell.


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