Polkadot Flips Litecoin To Become Fourth-Largest Cryptocurrency Author: Jimmy Aki Last Updated: 14 January 2021 Top smart contract protocol Polkadot appears to be on a red-hot streak as it recently broke into the higher echelons of cryptocurrencies. It appears DOT, the smart contract protocol’s native token, is now the fourth-largest cryptocurrency in the industry based on market cap. A Month-Long Rally Continues Per data from CoinMarketCap, DOT’s market capitalization now sits at $10.68 billion. With Litecoin’s market cap still pegged at $9.72 billion, DOT appears to have built a considerable lead and is currently sitting pretty at #4. The asset still has a $3 billion gap to close if it hopes to flip XRP and break into the top three. DOT’s rise is coming on the heels of a solid week for it. Over the past 24 hours, the asset’s price has jumped by 28 percent. However, while it is easy to believe that the asset is only holding strong this week, you’d be wrong. DOT reached a new all-time high last month, breaking the$11 mark for the first time. Since then, the asset has continued to coast off its momentum – as well as that of Bitcoin. Yesterday, Michael van de Poppe, a trader on the Amsterdam Stock exchange, explained that DOT could still drop to key support areas around $7.5. if that happens, the asst could rally to a new all-time high and possibly consolidate above the $20 mark. #Polkadot is one of the strongest bouncers today as it hit one of the levels I've marked previously. Probably some more consolidation, however, I think it's just a matter of time before we see $DOT above $20. pic.twitter.com/qQwXlJtwzl — Michaël van de Poppe (@CryptoMichNL) January 13, 2021 Lofty Goals for 2021 The protocol could also have a much bigger 2021 as it looks to solve scalability issues plaguing several decentralized finance (DeFi) projects. Last month, Christian Wood, the protocol’s creator, published a roundup of its performances in 2020 and highlighted some of its plans. In the roundup, Wood pointed out DOT’s dominance in the staking scene. Data from Staking Rewards shows that 60 percent of the asset’s circulating supply is locked in staking wallets. Wood also explained that the Polkadot blockchain has been doing considerable work in ensuring blockchain interoperability and connectivity. Last year, the protocol launched Substrate, a blockchain building framework that allows seamless integration between blockchains. The year also saw the emergence of projects like Acala – Polkadot’s foray into the DeFi space – and Moonbeam, an Ethereum-compatible toolkit that enables smart contract development. As for plans going into 2021, Wood confirmed that developers are working on bringing more cross-chain interoperability into the crypto market. He pointed out the launch of Substrate 3.0, an upgrade to the blockchain framework that will finally get full Ethereum compatibility. Polkadot plans to launch the upgrade before the end of 2021;’s first half. Success with these projects could help Polkadot usher in a new age for DeFi.