Shiba Inu calls himself “Dogecoin Killer”. But in many ways it’s a different breed.
Last month, the leading US cryptocurrency exchange, Coinbase, announced listings of a pair of cryptocurrencies based not on fighting inflationary monetary policy or creating an uncensored internet, but on … dogs.
After Dogecoin (DOGE) made dog cryptocurrencies legal, a number of other projects sprang into action, including Doge Cash, Akita Inu and Dogelon Mars. The most successful was Shiba Inu (SHIB). A few weeks after debuting at Binance, she amassed a market capitalization of $9 billion by appropriating the same meme-derived mascot. (It has since cooled to $3.5 billion.)
But while Shiba Inu’s creator has adopted the nickname “Dogecoin Killer”, SHIB and DOGE are fighting with different weapons.
What is it for?
Dogecoin is a fork of Luckycoin, which is derived from Litecoin derived from Bitcoin.
Its main use is for online tips because its low price and abundance make it feel like that penny in your pocket you’ll never use anyway. Its infinite supply limit means 10,000 new DOGE will be created every minute. You can always get more, right?
But then, with the help of superfans Elon Musk and Mark Cuban, Dogecoin took off, surpassing its former $0.01 ceiling on Jan. 27 and never looking back. It hit $0.68 this year, and even at its current price of $0.29, it has the seventh-largest market capitalization of any cryptocurrency, according to the Nomics.
In contrast, SHIB says it is “an experiment in decentralized spontaneous community building”, which sounds a bit like Dogecoin. His tokenomics, however, is very different. It has a supply limit, albeit a very high one, of 1 quadrillion. This was effectively cut in half as the project donated 50% to Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin … who then gave a sizable portion to the charity before burning (read: remove from circulation) most of it.
What’s the difference between them?
Dogecoin is a currency and Shiba Inu is a token.
While these terms are often used interchangeably, currencies exist in their own blockchain, while tokens run on top of another blockchain’s infrastructure. This is relevant because Shiba Inu is subject to Ethereum development decisions and because demand for the token can impede network transactions and increase network transaction prices for Ethereum-based tokens across the board.
According to his WOOF Paper, Shiba Inu founder Ryoshi chose to build on top of Ethereum “to ensure that his design was free to change and evolve without any impact from external regulations.” Furthermore, Ethereum was “already secure and well established”, allowing for decentralized projects.
The real goal, however, is to transition to a decentralized exchange, ShibaSwap, which will allow you to exchange SHIB with other Ethereum-based tokens directly – and even “faster and cheaper” after the Ethereum 2.0 update.
Regardless of the difference, at least they both have a sense of humor.