ETH is the three-letter code for ether, the cryptocurrency of the Ethereum blockchain. Ethereum was launched in 2015 with a vision to becoming a “world computer”, a blockchain that would be a base layer for a host of decentralized internet services.
If bitcoin is blockchain’s first killer app, a decentralized, permissionless type of money, then Ethereum is attempting to be a platform that will allow anyone to build decentralized apps for all sorts of use cases, such as decentralized finance, cloud storage, social media and more.
Ethereum is currently the second-largest public blockchain project by market cap (second to bitcoin).
It is also the first of a second generation of “smart contract” platforms, having inspired an entire ecosystem of competitors. Unlike bitcoin, ether does not have a fixed supply, there are currently over 107 million ether tokens in circulation.
Ether is viewed more as a type of digital commodity rather than a currency as it is used to pay for processing power on the Ethereum world computer.