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What is the difference between a token and a Bitcoin?

By December 21, 2020March 29th, 20223 minute read

Many of us have probably been using the terms ‘token’ and ‘coin’ interchangeably without realizing that there are minor but meaningful differences between them. It’s something we’re all fairly guilty of. But to get some clarity regarding the differences between Bitcoin and a token, we first need to understand the difference between a token and a conventional cryptocurrency as a whole. 

While both of these terms are used to define a unit of blockchain value, they still refer to different categories of digital currencies. Let’s explore.


Digital coins are unique digital currencies that are based on their own standalone blockchains. In other words, a digital coin is an asset that is native to its own blockchain. Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) are examples of such coins because they operate on the Bitcoin and Ethereum blockchains, respectively. These coins exist as data on the database (which is the blockchain), and any transactions are checked and verified by computers across the world.

Coins are used much like traditional money. They serve as a store of value, a medium of exchange, and a unit of account. However, certain digital coins like Ether, NEO, and DASH have additional features such as fuelling transactions, staking, and being allowed to vote on important decisions, respectively.

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Tokens are unlike coins in that they are created on top of existing blockchains. For example, the Ethereum platform remains one of the most common platforms for creating crypto tokens, and tokens built on Ethereum are known as ERC-20 tokens. ZRX, BAT, and GNT are some popular tokens existing on the Ethereum platform. Other such platforms include Stellar, NEO, Omni, and EOS.

An important distinction to be made here is that while coins mostly serve as a method of payment, tokens often exist to be used with dApps. They are mostly designed for specific applications and are used to activate features on the same. For example, using tokens to access games in a gaming dApp.


The Difference Between a Token and a Bitcoin

Now that we understand the difference between a digital coin and a token, it becomes far easier to understand how bitcoins are different from tokens. Much like coins, Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency (rather, the first cryptocurrency) that was built on the Bitcoin blockchain. Let’s explore the points of differences between the two.

  • Bitcoin is an asset native to its blockchain, while tokens are built on existing blockchains.
  • Bitcoin has monetary uses – it can be used as a store of value and a medium of exchange. It can also be used as a unit of account, which means that the things you buy can be priced in BTC too. 

For example, the conversion from 1 BTC to INR is approximately 1453049 INR as of December 2020, and thus, the Bitcoin price in INR can be used to price various goods and services. Therefore, apart from monetary uses, Bitcoin does not have much use. It cannot be staked or used to gain access to a dApp. 

Tokens, on the other hand, are created for different purposes altogether. These purposes can range from operating dApps, representing fractional ownership in a physical asset like real estate, voting rights when participating in governance, or even value-added services specific to brands (the WazirX token – WRX is a great example).

  • Since tokens are created on existing blockchains, they are far easier to create as compared to Bitcoin. However, creating a token does require paying a fee via the native coins to the blockchain where the token is being created.


We’re seeing an interesting shift across the cryptocurrency sector has been the move towards Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus models. 

Bitcoin relies on the Proof-of-Work (PoW) algorithm to validate transactions, involving ‘miners’ using high-end computing equipment to generate new bitcoins and secure the network. This has been termed by many in the community as an inefficient, resource-intensive method of running a blockchain network. Proof-of-Stake (Pos) does away with this approach and instead requires cryptocurrency holders to lock in their coins in the network to validate the transactions. 

Most new cryptocurrencies being made are being offered as a token that is generated via the blockchain in this manner. Ethereum is by far the biggest brand on the PoS front. This makes Bitcoin particularly stand out when compared with tokens.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What Are The Chances Of Bitcoin Crashing?

Two Yale University economists (Yukun Liu and Aleh Tsyvinski) produced research titled "Risks and Returns of Cryptocurrency" in 2018. They looked at the possibility of Bitcoin crashing to zero in a single day. The authors discovered that the chances of an undefined tragedy crashing Bitcoin to zero ranged from 0 percent to 1.3 percent and was around 0.4 percent at the time of publishing, using Bitcoin's history returns to determine its risk-neutral disaster probability. Others claim that because Bitcoin has no intrinsic value, it will inevitably crash to zero. On the other hand, Bitcoin advocates argue that the currency is backed by customer confidence and mathematics.

How Can I Get Bitcoin?

To begin, go to the WazirX website and register. After that, you will receive a verification email. The link received by verification mail will only be available for a few seconds, so make sure you click it as quickly as possible. This will successfully verify your email address. The following step is to set up security, so choose the best solution for you. After you've set up the security, you'll be given the option of continuing with or without completing the KYC process. Following that, you'll be sent to the Funds & Transfers section, where you can begin depositing Bitcoins into your wallet. You may also use INR to fund your WazirX Bitcoin wallet and then use it to purchase Bitcoin.

How Bitcoin Mining Works?

Bitcoin mining is a crucial element of the blockchain ledger's upkeep and development and the act of bringing new Bitcoins into circulation. It's done with the help of cutting-edge computers that solve exceedingly challenging computational arithmetic problems. Auditor miners are rewarded for their work. They're in charge of ensuring that Bitcoin transactions go through smoothly and legitimately. This standard was established by Satoshi Nakamoto, the founder of Bitcoin, to keep Bitcoin users ethical. By confirming transactions, miners assist in avoiding the "double-spending issue."

How Does Bitcoin Work?

The blockchain, a distributed digital ledger, is what Bitcoin is based on. As the name suggests, blockchain is a linked database made up of blocks that store information about each transaction, such as the date and time, total amount, buyer and seller, and a unique identifier for each exchange. Entries are linked in chronological order to form a digital blockchain. Entries are linked in chronological order to form a digital blockchain. Blockchain is decentralized, which means any central authority does not control it.

What Is Bitcoin Used For?

Bitcoin was created as a means of sending money over the internet. The digital currency was designed to be a non-centralized alternative payment system that could be used in the same way as traditional currencies. Bitcoin is being used by an increasing number of businesses and individuals. This includes establishments such as restaurants, apartments, and law firms.

How To Create Bitcoin Account?

Firstly, Go to the WazirX website and sign up. Then, a verification mail will be sent to you. The link sent via verification mail would be available only for a few seconds so make sure you click on the link sent to you as soon as possible, and it will verify your email address successfully. The next step is to set up security, so select the most suitable option for you. After you have set up the security, you will get a choice to either proceed further with or without completing the KYC procedure. After that, you will be directed to the Funds and Transfer page, where you could start depositing Bitcoins to your wallet. You can also deposit INR and then use it to buy Bitcoin for your WazirX Bitcoin wallet.

Is Bitcoin Mining Free?

Bitcoin mining isn't free, but it can be tried on a budget. Bitcoin mining is an essential part of the blockchain ledger's upkeep and development and the act of issuing new Bitcoins. It is accomplished by the use of cutting-edge computers that tackle complicated computational arithmetic problems. The effort of auditor miners is rewarded. They're in charge of ensuring that Bitcoin transactions go off without a fuss and that they're legal.

How To Invest In Bitcoin?

Bitcoin may be invested in two ways: through mining or exchanges. Bitcoin mining is carried out by high-powered computers that solve challenging computational arithmetic problems that are too difficult to complete by hand and complex enough to tax even the most powerful computers. WazirX, a Bitcoin exchange, is another alternative.

Can Bitcoin Be Converted To Real Money?

Crypto exchanges, Bitcoin ATMs, Bitcoin Debit Cards, and Peer Peer Transactions are all options for converting Bitcoin to cash. This can be accomplished by using Bitcoin exchanges such as WazirX. A Bitcoin ATM is a real place where you may purchase and sell Bitcoins with cash, unlike standard ATMs that allow you to withdraw money from your bank account. Many websites provide the option of purchasing Bitcoin in return for a prepaid debit card that works similarly to a standard debit card. Through a peer-to-peer marketplace, you may sell Bitcoin for cash faster and more privately.

What Type Of Currency Is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is a type of digital currency or cryptocurrency. In January 2009, Bitcoin was established. It's based on Satoshi Nakamoto's ideas, which he laid out in a whitepaper. The name of the individual or people who invented the technology remains unknown.

Disclaimer: Cryptocurrency is not a legal tender and is currently unregulated. Kindly ensure that you undertake sufficient risk assessment when trading cryptocurrencies as they are often subject to high price volatility. The information provided in this section doesn't represent any investment advice or WazirX's official position. WazirX reserves the right in its sole discretion to amend or change this blog post at any time and for any reasons without prior notice.
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