Ethereum: What is it and how is it different to bitcoin?

LONDON — Ether, the world's second-largest cryptocurrency, has been stealing the limelight from bitcoin lately. The digital coin hit a record high above $4,000 on Monday and is now up over 450% since the beginning of 2021.That doesn't come close to the returns on meme-inspired crypto dogecoin, which is up over 11,000% year-to-date. But many crypto investors dismiss dogecoin as little more than a joke and have compared its rise to the Reddit-fueled trading frenzy that pumped up the prices of GameStop and other stocks.So what exactly is ether? And how is it different to bitcoin?Ether is the native currency of Ethereum, an open-source blockchain platform. Ethereum was founded in 2013 by Russian-Canadian programmer Vitalik Buterin and several other crypto entrepreneurs. Many of the people who started Ethereum were previously involved in bitcoin.For Buterin, bitcoin was too limited in functionality. In an interview with Business Insider, he compares it to…

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