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What is Litecoin?
Litecoin ( LTC ) is a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency and open source software project released under the MIT/X11 license. Creation and transfer of coins are based on an open source cryptographic protocol and is not managed by any central authority.
Differences from Bitcoin
While inspired by, and in most regards technically nearly identical to Bitcoin ( BTC ), Litecoin has some technical differences compared to Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies, such as the adoption of Segregated Witness, and the Lightning Network. These effectively allow a greater number of transactions to be processed by the network in a given time, reducing potential bottlenecks, as seen with Bitcoin. For more details:
The Litecoin Network aims to process a block every 2.5 minutes, rather than Bitcoin's 10 minutes, which its developers claim allows for faster transaction confirmation.
Litecoin uses scrypt in its proof-of-work algorithm, a sequential memory-hard function requiring asymptotically more memory than an algorithm which is not memory-hard.
Due to Litecoin's use of the scrypt algorithm, FPGA and ASIC devices made for mining Litecoin are more complicated to create and more expensive to produce than they are for Bitcoin, which uses SHA-256.