An altcoin is a broad term to describe any cryptocurrency besides Bitcoin. Altcoin is a combination of alternative and coin. The term originated when new cryptocurrencies started launching, as a term to separate them from Bitcoin. In April 2011, Namecoin became the first cryptocurrency after Bitcoin, which also makes it the first altcoin. Most altcoins claim that they are an improvement of the Bitcoin network, usually offering faster transaction times, more security, or being more private.