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TRC-20 vs. ERC-20: Differences Between Tether (USDT) Networks

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Key Takeaways

  • TRC20 vs ERC20 are important in crypto. They are used on Tron and Ethereum networks.
  • TRC-20 has lower fees and quicker transactions. ERC-20 is more widely used and has better security because of Ethereum’s network.
  • Knowing the differences between TRC20 and ERC20 can make managing crypto easier.

Distinguishing between TRC-20 and ERC-20 token standards, particularly when dealing with Tether (USDT), is vital for investors and financial planners. This decision greatly impacts how fast transactions happen, the costs involved, and how efficiently operations run.

It’s crucial to grasp the differences between these two token protocols to improve the management of assets and make transactions more effective in the digital currency world.

Our analysis aims to clarify these distinctions, offering a solid understanding to guide strategic decision-making in cryptocurrency transactions.

TRC-20 vs. ERC-20: Overview

Tether (USDT) exists in two primary variants: TRC20 and ERC20, each operating on different blockchain platforms. TRC20 Tether runs on the TRON blockchain, offering faster and cheaper transactions compared to ERC20 Tether, which operates on Ethereum. TRC20 Tether is compatible with TRON-based wallets and exchanges, while Ethereum-based platforms support ERC20 Tether. Users may choose between them based on transaction speed, cost, and ecosystem compatibility.


Blockchain Tron


Token Standard



Transaction Fees

Significantly lower, often free

Higher, can be significant during congestion

Transaction Speed

Faster, typically around 3 minutes

Slower, can take up to 15 minutes


Higher, can handle thousands of transactions per second

Lower, limited by Ethereum network capacity

Smart Contract Functionality Limited

Extensive ecosystem of dApps and DeFi protocols

Contract Address Starts with “T”

Starts with “0x”

What is the Difference Between Tether (USDT) TRC20 and ERC20?

Tether (USDT) plays a significant role in the crypto world as a stablecoin, bridging traditional money systems with the expanding crypto space. It operates on both the Tron and Ethereum blockchain networks, following the TRC20 and ERC20 token standards.

What makes USDT stand out is its ability to adapt to different blockchain networks, showcasing its flexibility on platforms like Tron and Ethereum. Despite having the same main purpose of being a stable digital currency tied to the US dollar, their work on Tron and Ethereum introduces important differences.

These differences impact how fast transactions happen, the costs involved, and their compatibility with various networks. Users need to grasp these nuances when handling their digital assets.

Transaction Speed

TRC20 USDT transactions are processed on the Tron network, known for its high transaction throughput and fast processing times. This efficiency is attributed to Tron’s unique consensus mechanism, enabling faster and more cost-effective transactions than the Ethereum network.

Transaction Costs

Ethereum’s network, which processes ERC20 USDT transactions, often experiences higher transaction fees, especially during periods of congestion. In contrast, TRC20 USDT benefits from the lower transaction costs on the Tron network, making it a more economical option for users who frequently transfer funds.

Network Compatibility

USDT on the Ethereum blockchain, known as ERC20 USDT, seamlessly works with the extensive Ethereum ecosystem. This includes various decentralized applications (dApps), exchanges, and services. Its wide integration makes ERC20 USDT widely accepted and usable in many contexts.

On the other hand, TRC20 USDT is designed specifically for the Tron ecosystem. While it enjoys substantial support within Tron, it may face limitations when interacting with platforms outside the Tron network.

Blockchain Technology

The technology behind TRC20 and ERC20 USDT is shaped by the features of the Tron and Ethereum networks. Ethereum provides a strong and secure foundation for ERC20 USDT, ensuring top-notch security and reliability. On the other hand, the Tron network supports TRC20 USDT, focusing on scalability and efficient transactions, making it ideal for users who need quick and frequent transfers.

Recognizing these significant distinctions between Tether’s TRC20 and ERC20 versions is essential for users moving through the crypto world. This knowledge empowers them to make well-informed decisions considering factors like transaction speed, cost, network compatibility, and technological setup.

What Is TRC-20?

TRC-20 is a token standard designed for deploying smart contracts on the Tron blockchain for token creation. It ensures compatibility within the Tron ecosystem, providing a robust framework for developers to build and manage their tokens.

TRC-20 tokens leverage the full capabilities of the Tron Virtual Machine (TVM), emphasizing efficient, secure, and scalable transactions. This standard supports complex smart contract functionalities, including token transfers and interactions with other contracts.


  • Compatibility with Tron Virtual Machine (TVM): Seamlessly integrates with TVM to execute smart contracts.
  • Efficient Transaction Processing: Optimized for faster transaction speeds and higher throughput than other standards.
  • Smart Contract Functionality: Allows for creating complex smart contracts to execute various operations, including multi-party interactions and automated transactions.
  • Token Interoperability: Ensures that TRC-20 tokens can easily interact with other tokens and applications within the Tron ecosystem.
  • Energy and Bandwidth System: Utilizes a unique system of energy and bandwidth, reducing the cost of transactions and smart contract executions.


  • Lower Transaction Costs: Significantly reduced fees due to the Tron network’s efficient energy and bandwidth system.
  • High Transaction Speed: Capable of processing transactions faster, making it ideal for applications requiring high throughput.
  • Robust Security: Built on the secure and decentralized Tron blockchain, offering high security for transactions and smart contract executions.
  • Wide Adoption in the Tron Ecosystem: Widely used within the Tron community, providing strong support and seamless integration with various dApps and services.


  • Network Specific: Limited to the Tron blockchain, which may not be as widely adopted as Ethereum, potentially limiting interoperability with applications on other blockchains.
  • Variable Network Performance: Dependent on the overall performance of the Tron network, which can vary based on network congestion and other factors.
  • Learning Curve: Developers new to the Tron ecosystem may require time to familiarize themselves with its unique features and functionalities.

📚Read More: Tron (TRX) Wallet

What Is ERC-20?

ERC-20 is a technical standard for creating and issuing smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain for token deployment. It has become the ubiquitous standard for fungible tokens within the Ethereum ecosystem, providing a set of rules that all ERC-20 tokens must follow. This ensures uniformity and compatibility across tokens and smart contracts, facilitating ease of integration and exchange.

ERC-20 tokens utilize the capabilities of the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), allowing for a wide range of functionalities, including token transfers, approvals, and access to token balances.


  • Standardized Functions: Includes a standard list of rules and functions (transfer, total supply, balance, etc.) that all ERC-20 tokens must implement.
  • Smart Contract Interaction: Facilitates the interaction between different smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps) on the Ethereum network.
  • High Compatibility: Ensures tokens can be exchanged and interacted with consistently across services and wallets within the Ethereum ecosystem.
  • Wide Adoption: As the first token standard on Ethereum, it is widely supported by exchanges, wallets, and developers.
  • Transparent and Open: Built on Ethereum’s open and transparent platform, enabling visibility and auditability of token transactions and smart contract code.


  • Broad Acceptance: The widespread adoption of the ERC-20 standard makes exchanging these tokens and accessing various Ethereum ecosystem services easy.
  • Strong Developer Community: A large and active community that supports the development and innovation of ERC-20 tokens and related services.
  • Interoperability: ERC-20 tokens can easily interact with other smart contracts and dApps on Ethereum, facilitating complex ecosystems of decentralized services.
  • Robust Security: Leverages Ethereum’s secure network, protecting against fraud and unauthorized transactions.
  • Versatility: Supports various applications, from simple token swaps to complex decentralized finance (DeFi) products.


  • Higher Transaction Costs: Gas fees on the Ethereum network can be high, especially during periods of network congestion, impacting the cost-effectiveness of transactions involving ERC-20 tokens.
  • Scalability Issues: The Ethereum network can face scalability challenges, leading to slower transaction times and increased costs.
  • Complexity for Beginners: The wide range of functionalities and the need to understand Ethereum’s smart contract programming can pose a barrier to entry for new users and developers.
  • Risk of Contract Bugs: While the standard itself is secure, the risk of bugs in individual smart contracts can pose security risks for specific ERC-20 tokens.

📚Read More: Ethereum Wallet

Simplify Tether (USDT) Management with swissmoney

swissmoney makes managing your Tether (USDT) transactions a breeze. This platform acts as a bridge between Tron and Ethereum networks, allowing smooth handling of both TRC-20 and ERC-20 USDT tokens.


  • Cost-Effective Transactions: Enjoy optimized processes that ensure lower fees and faster transfers. Leverage the speed of the Tron network while maintaining the security of Ethereum.
  • Multi-Currency Management: Manage your digital assets and traditional currencies with ease. Utilize IBAN accounts for SEPA transfers, enabling global financial operations.
  • Spend USDT Like Cash: Top up your virtual debit card with Tether and spend it anywhere accepted. All transactions are secured with advanced measures like KYC, encryption, 2FA, and biometric recognition.
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Conclusion: Understanding TRC20 vs ERC20 Easily

Knowing the differences between TRC-20 and ERC-20 Tether tokens is key for smart choices in your crypto transactions. TRC-20 brings speed and lower costs on the Tron network, while ERC-20 is known for strong security and broad use on the Ethereum network.

swissmoney helps you easily handle your Tether, whether TRC-20 or ERC-20. With everything from multi-currency accounts to virtual debit cards and a user-friendly platform for managing your crypto and regular money, swissmoney is here to simplify the crypto world.

Don’t be held back by the details of different token types. Start with swissmoney now and make managing your money straightforward and effective.


Which USDT is better, ERC-20 or TRC-20?

The choice between ERC-20 and TRC-20 USDT depends on your needs and priorities. TRC-20 USDT on the Tron network might be better if you value lower transaction fees and faster processing times. However, if you prioritize wider acceptance and the robust security of the Ethereum network, ERC-20 USDT could be more suitable.

How do I know if my USDT is ERC-20 or TRC-20?

You can determine whether your USDT is ERC-20 or TRC-20 based on the token’s contract address or the platform you are using. ERC-20 USDT tokens are hosted on the Ethereum blockchain and typically have addresses that start with “0x”. In contrast, TRC-20 USDT tokens are on the Tron network and have addresses that begin with “T.” Always verify the network compatibility of your wallet or exchange to ensure you are using the correct version.

Can I transfer TRC-20 to ERC-20 wallet?

Directly transferring TRC-20 tokens to an ERC-20 wallet or vice versa is impossible due to the differences in blockchain technology. However, you can use a cryptocurrency exchange or a cross-chain bridge service to convert TRC-20 USDT to ERC-20 USDT or vice versa. This process involves exchanging the TRC-20 tokens for ERC-20 tokens within the platform and then withdrawing them to your desired wallet.

Are TRC-20 and ERC-20 the same as Ethereum?

TRC-20 and ERC-20 are not the same as Ethereum; they are token standards that operate on different blockchains. ERC-20 is a token standard for creating and issuing smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain. In contrast, TRC-20 is a similar standard but for the Tron blockchain. While ERC-20 tokens leverage the Ethereum network, TRC-20 tokens utilize the Tron network, offering distinct transaction speed, cost, and ecosystem support advantages.

Is TRC-20 the same as Ethereum?

No, TRC-20 is not the same as Ethereum. TRC-20 is a token standard specific to the Tron blockchain, designed for creating and managing smart contracts and digital tokens within the Tron ecosystem. On the other hand, Ethereum is a separate blockchain platform that supports its token standard, ERC-20, for similar purposes.  

What powers the TRC-20 token standard on the Tron network?

The TRC-20 token standard operates efficiently thanks to the Tron Virtual Machine (TVM), specifically designed for high-performance blockchain applications.

How do TRC20 and ERC20 token standards differ in their approach?

TRC20 and ERC20 are crucial token standards in the crypto tokens market, each defined by their respective token protocol. TRC20 utilizes the fast and efficient Tron Virtual Machine, while ERC20 tokens benefit from the robust security of the Ethereum blockchain.

Why are token standards important in the crypto industry?

Token standards like TRC20 and ERC20 establish a unified framework for creating and managing crypto tokens, ensuring compatibility and interoperability among various digital tokens within the expansive crypto marketplace.

Can you explain the significance of the token standard in creating digital tokens?

The token standard is fundamental in developing digital tokens, providing a consistent set of rules for token creation, distribution, and interaction on blockchain networks.

How do TRC20 and ERC20 enhance the functionality of crypto tokens?

TRC20 and ERC20 enhance crypto tokens by offering a standardized approach to smart contract functionality. This allows for seamless token transfers and interactions with other contracts and applications on the Tron and Ethereum platforms.”

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Renata Pacheco

Renata is a seasoned financial market expert with over 30 years of experience in journalism and content creation, primarily focusing on the financial market. Throughout her extensive career, she has worked with leading financial institutions such as Citibank Brasil, Fiserv in Latin America, and other notable financial entities, further honing her expertise and credibility in the sector.

For more than six years, Renata has also been writing for the crypto market, collaborating with financial publications in Brazil, the US, and Europe. Her deep understanding and extensive knowledge make her a respected voice in the industry, appreciated for her ability to demystify complex financial concepts and market trends. This skill enables her to make financial insights accessible to a wide audience, from novice investors to seasoned professionals.

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Please be advised that the information presented in this article is intended for general informational purposes only. It should not be construed as professional advice from swissmoney. It is important to note that swissmoney does not act as a financial adviser, and individuals are strongly encouraged to seek independent advice from qualified legal, financial, or accounting professionals before making any decisions related to cryptocurrency investments. Furthermore, investing in cryptocurrency assets carries inherent risks, and individuals should be aware that they may potentially lose all of their invested capital.
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