The Bitcoin (BTC) price looks strong and consistently manages to stay around the $44,000 level, waiting for a major breakthrough upwards. However, this time the bullish outlook of the largest cryptocurrency was not enough to give the altcoin market a boost. Despite the fact that the mainstream interest in cryptocurrencies is at an all time high, as attested by the number of crypto ads that aired during the Super Bowl, the altcoin market is struggling. But are all the altcoin news from the past week really so bearish? Let’s take a look!

Shiba Inu Jumps on the Metaverse Bandwagon, But It Doesn’t Help the Falling SHIB Price

Ever since it reached an all-time high of $0.00008845 in October last year, the SHIB price has been on a steady decline. Now, the second most popular meme cryptocurrency in the world is trying to salvage what’s left of its market cap by using the metaverse buzzword.

Recently, Shiba Inu has announced a project called “Shiba Inu Metaverse Lands”. Like numerous other metaverse games, the purpose of Shiba Inu Metaverse Lands will be letting investors purchase plots of virtual land.

Interestingly, it looks like the main cryptocurrency of Shiba Inu Metaverse Lands will not be Shiba Inu. Instead of using SHIB, the meme metaverse will utilize another Shiba-related token called Doge Killer (LEASH).

For now, there are no details whatsoever regarding Shiba Inu Metaverse Lands. Despite that, the price of LEASH managed to pump slightly following the announcement. However, it didn’t do anything to help the collapsing SHIB price - over the past 7 days, Shiba Inu depreciated by almost 10%, which means that it has fallen down over 65% since reaching ATH.

Shiba Inu price chart 

Monero Hash Rate Will Soon Be Dominated by One Mining Pool - Is the Most Private Crypto In the World Still Decentralized?

Meme tokens are not the only altcoins having troubles - serious cryptocurrencies are also having their own issues. Monero (XMR) seems to be having some major problems, which might even soon result in a potential threat to the whole Monero network.

Unlike cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC), which are fully public and can be easily traced, transactions made with Monero are completely private and anonymous. Unfortunately, the most private digital currency in the world might soon stop being decentralized.

Monero’s problems are the result of the rapidly expanding MineXMR mining pool. In August 2021, MineXMR contributed to 34% of XMR’s hash rate. But then, the mining pool started to quickly grow.

On Tuesday, February 15th, MineXMR surpassed 44% of Monero’s hash rate. If the mining pool continues to expand so fast, it will soon own more than a half of XMR’s hash rate, which could be very dangerous to the Monero network at large.

In Proof of Work cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or Monero, if a single entity owns a majority of the hash rate, it can decide which transactions are verified. In practice, it means that anyone who owns 51% of the hash rate can control the entire network, and use that power to commit fraud - for example, by double spending cryptocurrency.

Fortunately for Monero enthusiasts, MineXMR does not seem to be a malicious actor - it’s a respectable company headquartered in the UK. However, many blockchain experts consider it concerning that a single mining pool can dominate the hash rate of a major Proof of Work cryptocurrency.

Monero price chart 

Forget Binance Smart Chain - It’s BNB Chain Now

Binance, the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world, has announced that it’s rebranding its proprietary blockchain. From now on, Binance Smart Chain (BSC) will be known as BNB Chain.

The purpose of the rebranding is bringing more attention to BNB, the main utility token of the former Binance Smart Chain. Binance also intends to put more focus on the fact that “BNB” is an acronym standing for “Build and Build”.

While it looks like a simple rebrand at first, the details might seem quite confusing. It’s because the name BNB Chain will actually refer to two different chains: BNB Beacon Chain (formerly known as Binance Chain) and BNB Smart Chain (formerly Binance Smart Chain).

Whether it has anything to do with the rebrand or not, BNB has been performing very well over the past week. Binance’s digital currency has increased in price by 1%, and is now the 4th largest cryptocurrency on the market, with the total market cap of over $70 billion.

BNB price chart