Learn: The Battle of Giants: Bitcoin vs Ethereum

With Bitcoin entering the smart contracts arena, can it surpass Ethereum's versatility?
Bitcoin vs Ethereum, the battle just got intense; with Bitcoin getting into the smart contracts realm, can it beat Ethereum? The recent advancements in the Bitcoin Network, namely BRC-20 tokens, Ordinals, and proposed Bitcoin Virtual Machine (BVM), directly challenge the Ethereum ecosystem.

Bitcoin vs Ethereum – The Ecosystem War

Bitcoin’s lightning network is already revolutionizing BTC transactions making them cheaper and faster than Ethereum. But these developments are not enough to surpass Ethereum’s versatility and many applications. Still, the war is intense.
After the Taproot upgrade, the pivotal BRC-20 token standard was introduced. They are enabling the creation of fungible tokens on the Bitcoin blockchain. With this upgrade, they plan to surpass and replace Etehreum’s most popular ERC-20 token standard.
However, BRC-20 faces issues regarding more support for smart contracts and Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). Both of which are integral parts of Ethereum Blockchain. Moreover, the recent Taproot upgrade offered considerably improved Bitcoin’s privacy and smart contracts capabilities.
But despite the underlying limitations of BRC-20, the upgrade opens the gates for Bitcoin’s potential to handle smart contracts.
Bitcoin and Ethereum are giants of the crypto industry, offering unique features and capabilities to investors and users. Although Ethereum is the second largest concerning market cap, it provides a comprehensive ecosystem for the industry, facilitating multiple smart contracts and protocols and increasing their validity.
Ethereum also works toward the development of decentralized applications (dApps) along with the creation of NFTS. Still, the blockchain faces criticism compared to Bitcoin’s intended structure and purpose.
Bitcoin has the first mover advantage in the industry as it is the first cryptocurrency. The reason for this long reign is not because it provides a plethora of advanced features but because it’s simple and delivers on the promise of being a superior form of money—a limited supply of 21 million sets BTC apart from the rest.
Despite their differences on the battlefield, Bitcoin and Ethereum share some common grounds, like decentralization, open-source software, cryptographic encryption and native currencies. Both operate individual blockchains, which facilitate the creation of wallets required for transactions.
Bitcoin was created to be a worthier alternative to money, while Ethereum had more complex capabilities, like tokens and smart contracts. Vitalik Buterin has warned regarding overloading Ethereum consensus, as it has already been stretched thin. With the Taproot upgrade and BRC-20 tokens, Bitcoin is venturing into similar territory.
The two key features of the Bitcoin Network are Ordinals and Bitcoin Virtual Machine (BVM). Ordinals enhance the fungibility of tokens, and BVM promises a paradigm shift in the network’s functionality. It promises to provide an environment similar to Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM).
Source: Dune; Ordinals Inscription
This advancement increased Bitcoin’s smart contracts capabilities, expanding its use cases. However, the full extent of its potential is yet to be explored. Also, this ability does not match Ethereum’s versatility. ERC-20 standard and advanced capacity to handle smart contracts and support NFTs are much higher than Bitcoin’s.
Only time could tell who will win this war, Bitcoin or Ethereum. Even though Bitcoin is making waves with its latest offerings, it still needs to meet the scale of its competitor.
The future of these two giants depends on how well they can address their weaknesses and leverage their strengths. However, one bright side of this war is that the industry would witness new developments. Similar to developments in science and technology that happened during the past great wars.
This article first appeared in The CoinRepublic