Ethereum 2.0 Beacon Chain may speed up enterprise blockchain adoption

Ethereum 2.0 Beacon Chain may speed up enterprise blockchain adoption

Eth2’s rollout could result in enterprises flocking to a more secure and scalable Ethereum network.

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The highly anticipated security and scalability upgrade to the Ethereum network launched as planned on Dec. 1, marking a huge milestone for the Ethereum community. On the surface, the Eth2 Beacon Chain will help ensure an increase in scalability and capacity across the Ethereum network. However, the initial launch of the Beacon Chain signifies much more than promised network benefits, and could potentially drive enterprise blockchain adoption even further. 

Corey Petty, chief security lead at Status — a globally distributed collective working to build products, tools and infrastructure for Eth2 clients — told Cointelegraph that Phase 0 of the launch of the Beacon Chain represents a significant milestone because many core building blocks such as networking and a proof-of-stake consensus will now be rolled out:

“Beacon Chain is a fundamental requirement for the latter phases of Eth2 and should be tested in isolation. We expect the other phases to be rolled out more quickly after that, while the gradual and phased rollout allows us to ‘soft-start’ the network.”

Proof-of-Stake consensus perks

Although the Ethereum 2.0 network has been launched and is currently being tested in isolation, there is much to be said about the advent of a reliable proof-of-stake, or PoS, network, which Eth2 hopes to demonstrate.

According to Petty, Ethereum 2.0’s Phase 0 activation shows that a significant threshold of Ether (ETH) holders were confident enough to stake 32 ETH each, worth approximately $332 million combined. These funds cannot be accessed until Phase 2 is completed, which Petty noted should be between 2021 and 2022. Petty further said that Ether holders’ willingness to stake for Phase 0 shows they believe the upside of Eth2 is greater than the downside of losing approximately $19,000.

The promises of Eth2 would ultimately allow the network to overcome its dilemma of sacrificing security for decentralization or scalability, which has been the case for Ethereum since its creation in 2015. The network previously relied on a proof-of-work consensus mechanism that made it vulnerable to possible 51% attacks, whereby a malicious group of miners may make changes to the network if they control the majority of the computing power. A recent 51% attack on the Ethereum Classic protocol resulted in $5.6 million worth of ETC being double-spent.

Ben Edgington, lead product owner at ConsenSys, who has been working on developing Eth2 from day one, confirmed to Cointelegraph that Ethereum has been working toward a PoS consensus mechanism since its earliest days. According to Edgington, the Beacon Chain has been in development for two years, noting that this is the coordination layer intended to keep the Ethereum network secure and organized.

As such, Edgington explained that a PoS consensus is more secure than a PoW consensus due to the fact that an attack on the chain will result in stake taken away from network stakers. “We can now put a precious cost on attacking the chain,” he said. Echoing Edgington, Petty noted that security is achieved by active participation in the consensus algorithm. He remarked that once more devices can run on the new network, the Ethereum ecosystem will become more secure, decentralized and scalable.

Enabling enterprise applications

With a PoS consensus mechanism in place, it’s notable to point out that Ethereum 2.0 will enable enterprise-grade applications to run on a decentralized network. This important development provides an alternative to other major enterprise applications that use private, permissioned networks such as IBM’s blockchain, which is powered by Hyperledger Fabric.

In addition to a more trusted and reliable network, Petty explained that Eth2 will enable secure transactional throughput that “more than quadruples Visa’s centralized capacity of 24,000 transactions per second.” This is expected to be the case thanks to the use of rollups.

According to Edgington, rollups are similar to sharding in the sense that the solution provides scalability. He explained that rollups allow for some transactions to be taken off-chain, while leaving just enough transactions on chain to ensure trustlessness. “Something must be on chain to show third-party operators are being honest. This allows for high throughput while ensuring security of the network,” he said.

Specifically speaking, Petty shared that Eth2 will be able to scale approximately 100,000 transactions per second. In addition, the network will provide security, decentralization and lower gas fees. As a result, more enterprises will flock to the Ethereum network, according to Petty, who added:

“Eth2 will work to solve the trilemma that has kept enterprises on the periphery of the Ethereum ecosystem and further open the gates for them to run decentralized applications (dApps) securely and efficiently at scale.”

For example, Ethereum has been an important component of the Baseline Protocol, which is being leveraged by Coke One North America, or CONA, for cross-organizational supply chain transactions. The Baseline Protocol works well with tamper-resistant state machines like the Ethereum mainnet.

John Wolpert, technical steering committee chair for Baseline Protocol, told Cointelegraph that Eth2 will eventually ensure that the Ethereum network won’t slow down under load. “The network won’t slow to the point where a business-to-business workflow has to stop and wait for too much time for on-chain confirmation of any given workstep,” he explained.

Enterprises will not benefit immediately

Wolpert further pointed out that the Eth2 Beacon Chain won’t have an immediate effect of baselining techniques, noting that there is enough headroom on the current public network for projects currently in the works. Meanwhile, Wolpert explained that the successful deployment of the Beacon Chain should give enterprises the confidence that Ethereum is a reliable mainnet to manage baseline proofs.

John Whelan, managing director of Santander Bank and chairman of the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance, further told Cointelegraph that enterprises will start seeing the benefits of Eth2 in terms of scalability, privacy and genuine settlement finality.

However, Whelan also mentioned that the Beacon Chain’s having launched does not mean it is running smart contracts. “We still need the other phases of Eth2 to realize its potential in terms of scalability and cost reduction. However, Eth 2.0 is real. It is not vaporware,” he said.


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Eth2’s rollout could result in enterprises flocking to a more secure and scalable Ethereum network.

Waves Wants to Put an End to Bogus Blockchain Speed Claims

Waves Wants to Put an End to Bogus Blockchain Speed Claims

Waves Enterprise wants to ‘separate the chaff from the wheat’ when it comes to speed claims from blockchain networks, helping potential users make educated decisions.

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Waves Enterprise has created a framework for load testing of blockchain networks under real-life scenarios in order to provide greater transparency for potential clients.

Original sin

Transactional capacity or lack thereof has been a hotly contested discussion in the industry almost from the beginning. The first known response to Satoshi Nakamoto announcing Bitcoin (BTC) was on exactly this topic:

“We very, very much need such a system, but the way I understand your proposal, it does not seem to scale to the required size.”

A lot has changed since then. Many alternative consensus protocols have been developed, hundreds of public and permissioned blockchains have been built. However, the issue of speed and capacity remains ever relevant. Many of these second- and third-generation blockchains are much faster than Bitcoin — or at least, they claim to be. 

Their purported speeds range from a few thousand to millions of transactions per second. The latest initiative by Waves Enterprise aims at accurately estimating a blockchain’s speed under various real-world scenarios.

Customers should know the truth

Artem Kalikhov, chief product officer of Waves Enterprise, told Cointelegraph Waves Enterprises itself has been hurt by unverified claims of their competitors, who promise higher speeds. He is also opined that these disingenuous claims hamper adoption. The long-term goal of this initiative is to convey to the potential customers that when comparing various blockchains, one cannot rely on baseless claims and instead need to test under conditions that are going to approximate real life:

“Oftentimes, those platforms may provide results that were achieved under conditions that are not similar to the client’s use case; and we are trying to convey that they

, should firstly figure out how the declared transactional capacity will be affected by their use case. For example, let’s say, they claim it’s 300 transactions per second, but are these 300-byte transactions or are we transmitting encrypted data that need to be decrypted and encrypted, this will create a completely different stress for the network.”

Kalikhov realizes that it is unlikely that blockchains that knowingly make unrealistic claims will use the framework that Waves Enterprise has developed. However, he hopes that if potential users of this technology start demanding realistic testing, things will change.

More realistic metrics should help blockchain technology find greater adoption in the enterprise space.


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Waves Enterprise wants to ‘separate the chaff from the wheat’ when it comes to speed claims from blockchain networks, helping potential users make educated decisions.

Bitcoin Block Generation Speed Falls to 2017 Lows

Bitcoin Block Generation Speed Falls to 2017 Lows

Just 95 blocks were generated on the Bitcoin blockchain yesterday, as miners are readjusting to post-halving conditions

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There were only 95 blocks generated on the Bitcoin (BTC) blockchain on May 18, according to data presented by pseudonymous Bitcoin analyst digitalik.net.

“In [the] last 10 years we had only 8 days with less than 100 blocks,” the analyst tweeted, referring mostly to the 2017 Q3 period.

In an interview with Cointelegraph, digitalik.net attributed the low block time to the recent Bitcoin halving and the decreased BTC hash rate in particular:

“Many miners cannot generate a profit now because their expenses are still the same and income cut in half.”

According to the chart provided by the analyst, BTC daily block generation metric fluctuated around 100–120 blocks per day after the halving, but then dropped to just 95 blocks on May 18.

The block generation speed depends on the hash rate and Bitcoin difficulty, digitalik.net explained. The latter, which gets automatically adjusted every 2016 blocks, is designed so that mining one block will take approximately 10 minutes to get mined.

However, the expert is skeptical about block generation speed coming back to normal after the next recalculation, given that the BTC price stays below $10,000:

“I don’t think [the] next diff adjustment will bring it back to 10 min/block. Because adjustment is done based on [the] entire period average (since last adjustment). And this average is not real current picture because it includes also one week before halving.“

On the other side, if [the] price breaks up above 10K and keeps going up, then some of those miners might turn their equipment back on increasing hashrate”.

Other post-halving implications

As recently reported by Cointelegraph, BTC transaction fees have seen anomalous volatility amid the halving, increasing over 800% in one month.

With the block reward cut in half, around 17% of miners’s revenue now comes from transaction fees.


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Just 95 blocks were generated on the Bitcoin blockchain yesterday, as miners are readjusting to post-halving conditions

China’s Central Bank Wants to Speed Up Blockchain Adoption

China’s Central Bank Wants to Speed Up Blockchain Adoption

Officials from the People’s Bank of China push to accelerate adoption of the country’s Fintech Development Plan.

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The People’s Bank of China, or PBoC, Financial Technology Committee held its first meeting of the year this week. During the meeting, the central bank’s deputy governor, Fan Yifei, urged that the country’s blockchain adoption strategy be accelerated.

According to a report released by Sina on May 13, the bank’s deputy governor met with both PBoC officials and the heads of their affiliated financial companies. During the talks, Fan highlighted the importance of the blockchain and fintech industries, openly seeking to ensure that the country’s adoption plan will be successfully implemented by its established 2021 deadline.

Digitization of the national economy

Fan stressed the need for “accelerating the digitization” of the Chinese economy.

The meeting included an overview of scientific studies which test the introduction of new policies to encourage the development plan.

Officials stated that it is necessary to study the fintech development index system, carefully monitor dynamics, and make a comprehensive evaluation to guide financial institutions to accelerate the digital transformation.

One conclusion of the meeting was:

“It’s necessary to strengthen the application of regulatory science and technology, actively use big data, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, blockchain, and other technologies to strengthen the construction of digital supervision capabilities.”

China’s interest in blockchain technology keeps rising

The Fintech Development Plan focuses on the standardization of cross-market fintech operations in China, revealed in August 2019.

China’s interest in blockchain technology continues to grow. Cointelegraph reported on March 4 that the Chinese province of Hunan established its first provincial blockchain zone in the city of Loudi.

Another Chinese province, Hainan, joined the blockchain ecosystem with the announcement of a cross-border financial services platform on May 09.


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Officials from the People’s Bank of China push to accelerate adoption of the country’s Fintech Development Plan.

Fireblocks Boosts Transaction Speed 800% With Free-to-Use Algorithm

Fireblocks Boosts Transaction Speed 800% With Free-to-Use Algorithm

Fireblocks has developed an 800% faster algorithm for secure MPC transactions and made it free-to-use for custodians and vendors

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Digital asset security specialist, Fireblocks, announced the development of a new multi-party computation, or MPC, algorithm on May 13. The algorithm is claimed to improve the transaction speed for secure digital asset transfer by 800%.

Furthermore, digital asset custodians and vendors will be able to access and use the new protocol without cost. Fireblocks does not intend to apply for patents on the new technology.

Multi-party computation explained

MPC is a form of cryptography which allows multiple parties to calculate the output of a function, taking inputs from each party, while keeping those individual inputs private.

In terms of digital asset transactions, it enables a private key to be split into multiple parts, and then recreated without the pieces needing to be assembled on a single machine first.

Essentially, it removes the single point of compromise by transforming private keys into liquid form through securely distributed transaction signing.

It also tends to incorporate an element of threshold multi-sig technology, whereby only a certain threshold number of the private key sections are needed in order to sign a transaction.

Making MPC faster and safer

The new protocol, dubbed MPC-CMP, is based on the current industry standard for MPC. It manages to increase the transaction speed by 800% by reducing the number of rounds needed to securely sign an MPC transaction from nine to one.

This is achieved by halving the number of interactive rounds down to four, of which three can take place in a pre-processing stage. This leads to a non-interactive signing protocol.

The algorithm also incorporates security improvements, such as automatically refreshing key shares every minute, protections against advanced attackers, and a universally composable proof out-of-the-box.

Making MPC free-er

Fireblocks have made the protocol available for any digital asset custodian and MPC vendor to use free of charge.

The company has stated that it will not be applying for patents on the new technology. They have also opened up to peer review to ensure the protocol’s strength and efficiency before implementation. Fireblocks CEO, Michael Shaulov, explained the rationale behind such a move:

“As financial institutions look to launch and operationalize digital asset services, we believe MPC-based technology will be paramount to delivering an experience comparable to the speed of traditional assets. We’re freely providing custodians and MPC vendors with our new algorithm to drive innovation, boost adoption, and prepare digital assets for the broader institutional market.”

Fireblocks’ platform provides institutional investors with a way to securely transfer digital assets between exchanges, wallets, and counterparties. As Cointelegraph reported, it recently hit monthly transfer volumes exceeding $7 billion. This news came alongside an expansion to meet demand in the Asia-Pacific region.


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Fireblocks has developed an 800% faster algorithm for secure MPC transactions and made it free-to-use for custodians and vendors

Blockchain’s Need for Speed Brings New Tools to the Crypto Industry

Blockchain’s Need for Speed Brings New Tools to the Crypto Industry

With so many new blockchain platforms launching, it has become more difficult for any of them to stand out. So, what about those claiming to be next gen?

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Another day, another mainnet launch. Or at least, that’s sometimes how it can feel in the blockchain space, as every project seems to be scrambling to be the latest and greatest in balancing the trade-offs between speed, scalability and security. Unfortunately, many of them end up languishing with little development activity and precious few users.

Therefore, when a new project comes along that appears to be stirring up genuine excitement among established players and investors in the space, it’s worth taking a second look. Despite being new on the scene and still in the process of developing its testnet, Solana is one such project. 

It’s currently associated with names such as Bison Trails and Chainlink, having previously garnered $20 million in investment from high-profile funds such as 500 Startups and Multichain Capital. It also recently sold out of all its tokens in a Dutch auction, even despite the mid-March market carnage. So, what’s going on with Solana to generate such significant interest from the industry? 

The background

Back in 2017, CEO Anatoly Yakovenko founded Solana with the ambitious goal of creating a blockchain platform that could scale for global adoption. Yakovenko had previously led the team developing operating systems at telecommunications manufacturer Qualcomm, where as he told Cointelegraph: “I was always a performance geek. I spent 12 years at Qualcomm trying to squeeze out every last bit of performance from hardware.” He also engineered a distributed operating system at Mesosphere and worked on compression at Dropbox. 

Upon founding Solana, he onboarded a team of similarly experienced professionals. The company’s chief technology officer and principal architect, Greg Fitzgerald, had also previously worked at Qualcomm across the full spectrum of embedded systems. Its chief operating officer, Raj Gokal, brought experience in product management and finance from his time as a venture investor at General Catalyst and from managing products at his own startup, Sano, and at Omada Health. The chief scientist, Eric Williams, is a particle physicist who studied at Berkeley and gained his Ph.D. while at the European Organization for Nuclear Research, commonly referred to as CERN, hunting for the Higgs boson particle. 

The Solana team has been able to attract some impressive investors and partners on its road to mainnet launch. Multichain Capital led a $20 million funding round that concluded in July 2019. More recently, the company ran a Dutch auction through Coinlist for the sale of 8 million Sol tokens, raising a further $1.76 million from 91 companies. In total, Solana has sold 186 million tokens and raised $25.6 million from token sales. 

Solana has also attracted several companies to participate in Tour de Sol, its incentivized testnet. The most high-profile of these is Bison Trails, which is also part of the Libra Association. Bison Trails serves as a validator node on the Solana testnet but has also integrated support for Solana to its infrastructure-as-a-service offering.

The issues at hand

Like many other blockchain projects, the Solana team has the scalability challenge in mind while developing the platform. However, Solana aims to achieve scalability without compromising on security or decentralization. Both have been an issue with other blockchains, particularly those using delegated proof-of-stake, which has proven itself prone to manipulation. 

Solana also aims to solve another problem inherent in blockchain consensus: agreement on time. In any ledger, the time that the entry is made is critical, as it forms the backbone of the ledger’s chronology. If a ledger is held on a centralized server, the system clock simply timestamps entries as they’re recorded. However, in a decentralized system, all nodes are working to their own clocks. Therefore, time is something that the network nodes must agree on as much as the nature of the transaction itself. 

Furthermore, in Bitcoin and other proof-of-work blockchains, the amount of time a miner takes to solve a cryptographic nonce is what governs the difficulty level. So, in the context of a blockchain, recording the passage of time is key. Different blockchains solve this challenge in different ways. However, achieving agreement on time ends up consuming a heavy load in messaging between network nodes.

For example, Hedera Hashgraph, a platform with similar goals to Solana, takes a timestamp from a supermajority of nodes on the network and calculates the median. This has allowed the Hashgraph network to quickly overtake Ethereum in transaction numbers. Christian Hasker, the chief marketing officer of Hedera Hashgraph, told Cointelegraph: 

“Since open access of our platform in September 2019 (roughly 6 months), Hedera has seen over 80 million transactions conducted on our network. In comparison, it took Ethereum a little over two and a half years to hit that same milestone.”

Proof-of-history

To overcome the challenge of recording time, Solana uses a unique protocol called proof-of-history, otherwise known as PoH, that encodes the passage of time into the blockchain data itself without requiring specific inputs or messaging between network nodes. It uses a feature called a verifiable delay function, or VDF, which takes a known amount of time to compute and is limited to operating on a single central processing unit core, meaning processing can’t be expedited by using multiple processors. 

The Solana protocol encodes the results of each VDF into the block of its successor. In doing so, it provides an immutable log of the passage of time before consensus even takes place. By removing the load of time-based messaging, Solana claims to achieve transaction speeds of nearly 50,000 per second.

Yakovenko concisely explained the importance of reaching consensus regarding time within a blockchain environment, telling Cointelegraph: “Because we had PoH, we were able to make strong assumptions about time and reduce a lot of the complexity in the implementation.” Regarding the role of VDFs in future blockchain implementations, Yakovenko elaborated on the complexity of implementing them:

“VDFs are still fairly new, and their proposed implementations require a lot of verification hardware like ours, or new ASICS. […] Since our scaling approach depends on modern systems, our VDF works exceptionally well for our network. With our current infrastructure, we’ve been able to leapfrog the current state of the art and deliver throughput of 50,000 transactions per second with 400ms block times on the mainnet today.”

Tower Byzantine fault tolerance and proof-of-stake

Solana uses a variation on the practical Byzantine fault tolerance model used by Hyperledger Fabric and others called tower Byzantine fault tolerance. This consensus model is designed to incentivize network participants to act in the interests of the network at all times. Nodes stake their tokens on the validity of the most recent proof-of-history hash in a similar way to how they’d stake tokens on block validity in other blockchains.

Similar to pBFT, the more hashes that are confirmed after any given vote, the longer it will take to roll back that vote. Validators cannot vote for a fork once they’ve voted on a particular hash without being penalized. Solana also uses proof-of-stake to determine who participates in the network as a validator. Token holders who don’t have the hardware to join as a validator can delegate a validator to participate in block production. 

To summarize, proof-of-history acts as a clock for the network, whereas tBFT incentivizes and penalizes validators to act in the network’s interests. PoS enables token holders to act as delegators, deciding who serves as a validator. 

Taking on scalability

The Solana team didn’t stop at inventing an entirely new consensus method to overcome the scalability challenge, and as Yakovenko told Cointelegraph, proof-of-history, tBFT and PoS are just for consensus. He added: “We had to innovate 8 more times to continue unblocking other scaling problems ranging from parallel transaction processing to real-time block streaming across the globe.”

Eight other innovations supposedly all play a role in speeding up processing time or generally making Solana run more efficiently. For example, Sealevel is a feature that enables the processing of multiple smart contracts in parallel. Turbine works in a way that’s comparable to BitTorrent, breaking data up into smaller packets to enable scalability between nodes, allowing Solana to support thousands of nodes running concurrently. 

Developers needed

Recently, Solana teamed up with oracle provider Chainlink to build a superfast oracle that updates every 400 milliseconds. Yakovenko told Cointelegraph that the move was in response to recent market failures due to network congestion. He expanded on the company’s plans to involve more developers and partners over time, telling Cointelegraph:

“We have a great accelerator program that has over 450 applicants already, so developers are going out of their way to find us. They want to build consumer-grade apps but that simply isn’t possible with the infrastructure at their disposal today. Given the pent up demand to build, we’re hopeful that developers will come to check out Solana and that a sizable percentage of those that do will migrate their dapps.”

Hasker said that Hedera Hashgraph similarly sees that there’s an unmet demand from developers, stating: 

“In addition to addressing the scalability and security required for applications, dApp developers prize ease-of-use and cost as major drivers of adoption. In addition, dApps want to know that the platform is stable and that it won’t fork so they don’t have to maintain multiple code bases. Finally, they want reassurance that the platform will be around for the long term, and that it’s governed by a trusted council that understands how business runs, and what businesses need.”


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With so many new blockchain platforms launching, it has become more difficult for any of them to stand out. So, what about those claiming to be next gen?

Waves Claims 70x Increase in Smart Contract Speed Amid Enterprise Upgrades

Waves Claims 70x Increase in Smart Contract Speed Amid Enterprise Upgrades

The upgrade will allow entities across platforms that use Waves’ technology to copy data across multiple blockchains

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Russian blockchain firm Waves has announced updates to its enterprise platform, including accelerated smart contract execution, licensing fees and inter-chain anchoring.

On March 17, Waves wrote that the new Version 1.2 of Waves Enterprise will enable an increase in containerized smart contract execution speeds by up to 70 times. 

The company has sped up execution times by replacing the platform’s former REST communication protocol with Google’s Remote Procedure Call (gRPC) — which containerizes contract execution by removing guest operating systems from the protocol.

The speed-up in contract execution will facilitate scaling so that clients can process billions of transactions each year.

Licensing fees introduced for Waves Enterprise users

Waves Enterprise is introducing a new licensing for Waves Enterprises proprietary technologies. 

The new policy enables private networks able to operate in test mode without licensing until reaching a block height of 30,000 — which Waves estimates takes two weeks. 

Entities will need to purchase a license to continue operation on the Waves Enterprise platform after reaching a block height of 30,000.

Licenses are available for trial use, commercial use and non-commercial use over one-year, two-year or indefinite periods.  

Waves also reportedly provides free mainnet licenses to node operators holding a set quantity of WEST tokens.

Optimization and private data introduced for Node operators

Waves Enterprise now supports the uploading and exchange of private data among all node operators, which was previously only available through running a Node API.

Waves also claims it has “optimized” the enterprise network’s node nucleus, significantly reducing the resources required for node operators to maintain current throughput.

Version 1.2 supports anchoring across private networks based on Waves technology 

The upgraded platform introduces ‘anchoring’ — which allows multiple enterprise networks to interconnect and so that the data written to one blockchain can be copied to other chains within the network.

Anchoring can occur between networks operating across Waves Enterprise, Waves Platform, and private networks built using Waves technology.

Version 1.2 will also include a new data crawler.

Competition among enterprise blockchain platforms increases

An increasing number of firms are seeking to launch enterprise blockchain solutions as distributed ledger technology adoption grows among major corporations.

Global taxation firm Ernst and Young (EY) will launch their forthcoming enterprise protocol Baseline in partnership with Microsoft and Consensys next month. The platform will support zero-knowledge proofs, distributed identity, and off-chain storage to protect corporate privacy.

At the start of March, Boeing announced it had inked a partnership with multinational aerospace conglomerate Boeing to sell $1 billion worth of spare aviation parts using Honeywell’s customize version of Hyperledger’s Fabric.


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The upgrade will allow entities across platforms that use Waves’ technology to copy data across multiple blockchains

Transaction Speed and Profitability Are Linked in Crypto

Transaction Speed and Profitability Are Linked in Crypto

To gain profits in the crypto space, transaction speeds remain one of the most important characteristics for the industry

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Crypto markets move at the speed of light, but many financial institutions today are still using cumbersome cold storage and hardware wallets — the most well-known digital asset security methods — to secure their coins.

However, institutions are realizing that these methods are simply too slow to be practical for day-to-day use, and that using them in 2020 risks falling behind market pace.

For financial institutions working with crypto, increasing transaction speed by adopting new storage and transfer tech will be the path toward accelerating profitability in 2020.

Related: Secure Encryption Key Management Modules, Explained

The correlation between speed, profit and exchanges

It’s common knowledge that the price of Bitcoin (BTC) often fluctuates rapidly. In 2011, the Mt. Gox flash-crash — one of the largest in the history of Bitcoin — led to the price of Bitcoin dropping 99.4% in a matter of minutes.

Bitcoin has had a solid 2020 so far, with price movements generally trending upward. But even during a strong growth period like the one we’re in, prices can vary enormously. In fact, on Feb. 19, Bitcoin had its fifth-largest hourly price drop ever: a drop of nearly $800 in an hour.

Source: TradingView

Currently, exchanges require prefunding of assets to receive trading credit. This process is cumbersome and requires effective risk management in terms of managing exchange liquidity. At the same time, it does not allow users to easily take advantage of market-positive opportunities across different trading venues. The process is an inefficient use of capital, requiring users to allocate on exchanges even if market forces don’t necessarily indicate they should be trading on that exchange, as a trader would never want to be out of position on an exchange.

All these operational inefficiencies are currently tolerated in order to maximize transaction speeds. In this industry, opportunities can disappear at the drop of a hat, and hedging your position for timeframes of hours can be complicated and expensive. Being able to quickly fund your account with a liquidity provider affects your top-line in a direct way.

As a result, quick transaction speeds are an untapped opportunity for organizations that want to accelerate profits this year.

In 2020, it’s all about getting the transaction speed as high as possible, which means looking into new ways of storing and moving crypto.

Scaling operations isn’t linear

So, you’re ready to focus on upping transaction speed in 2020 to maximize profits. An obvious first step toward doing so (and one that would allow a tight grip kept on asset security) is to scale operations by increasing headcount.

Related: Crypto Exchange Hacks in Review

But raw headcount alone can’t speed up operations to a level where you’re really seeing profit margins change. Ultimately, you can only move as fast as your operational processes allow you to. Whether you have one operations manager, five or 20, sluggish access to your digital assets caused by the limitations of your storage solution will get in the way of execution speed. Needless to say, scaling your operations team will also impact your bottom line.

That’s why institutions in the crypto space are looking at altering the way they do business entirely. Instead of hiring more operations managers, they’re piloting new technologies that make crypto significantly more accessible without sacrificing top-grade security. 

Swifter, more secure transactions

One new technology that’s gained traction is MPC (multi-party computation) cryptography. When paired with hardware isolation (especially at the chip level), MPC private key sharding removes the possibility of a single point of compromise without jeopardizing instant access to assets. 

Institutions are also starting to eliminate time-consuming test transfers entirely by joining private networks where deposit addresses have been eliminated. In these networks, whitelisting happens automatically on the backend, preventing spoofing and man-in-the-middle attacks while significantly decreasing transaction times.

Transaction speed is really the next frontier — institutions need to be focused on bringing traders closer to a single credit pool, allowing them to seize market opportunities faster. Some teams have embraced solutions like Fireblocks, Omniex and AlgoTrader to accelerate trade execution and scale operations without increasing headcount, giving them a leg up on the competition.

The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

Michael Shaulov is the CEO and co-founder of Fireblocks. He is a serial cybersecurity entrepreneur and investor. Before founding Fireblocks, a digital asset security platform, Michael co-founded Lacoon Mobile Security, which was acquired by Check Point. Prior to his commercial endeavors, Michael pioneered the mobile security field in an elite military technological unit (8200), where he received the Israeli Presidential Excellency Honor for his contributions. He holds a BSc in Computer Sciences and Physics from Ben-Gurion University, Israel.


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To gain profits in the crypto space, transaction speeds remain one of the most important characteristics for the industry

MIT ‘Spider’ Routing Scheme Could Speed Up Cryptocurrency Transactions

MIT ‘Spider’ Routing Scheme Could Speed Up Cryptocurrency Transactions

MIT researchers have created a new crypto-routing scheme to notably reduce blockchain-based transaction processing times

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Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have created a new cryptocurrency-routing scheme to speed up blockchain-based transactions.

In an announcement  on Jan. 30, MIT claimed that the new solution called “payment channel networks” (PCN) is able to notably reduce blockchain-based transaction times and even boost profits. 

As explained, in PCN, transactions are performed with minimal involvement from the blockchain. “Pairs of PCN users form off-blockchain escrow accounts with a dedicated amount of money, forming a large, interconnected network of joint accounts. Users route payments through these  accounts, only pinging the blockchain to establish and close the accounts, which speeds things up dramatically. Accounts can also collect a tiny fee when transactions get routed through them,” the release further read.

While traditional schemes use the shortest path possible to complete a transaction and do not consider a user’s balance, PCNs rely on bidirectional joint accounts, where payments can only be routed on channels with sufficient funds to perform the transactions.

This, according to the release, eliminates a scenario in which one of the users in the joint account handles too many transactions, which could result in a zero balance and make it impossible to route further transactions.

Splitting full transactions

Apart from PCN, the researchers introduced Spider, a technique that splits each full transaction into smaller “packets,” which could be transmitted across different channels at different rates. Vibhaalakshmi Sivaraman, one of the researchers, said:

“Shortest-path routing can cause imbalances between accounts that deplete key payment channels and paralyze the system […] Routing money in a way that the funds of both users in each joint account are balanced allows us to reuse the same initial funds to support as many transactions as possible.”

In a series of recent transactions-related developments in the industry, tech giant IBM was awarded a patent for the development of a “self-aware token” designed to track and record events of an offline transaction. The proposed system relates to financial data processing in an electronic currency platform, as well as to processing e-commerce tokens, which involve offline transactions.


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MIT researchers have created a new crypto-routing scheme to notably reduce blockchain-based transaction processing times

Buterin Wants to Speed Up Ethereum 2.0 Transition With ETH1-Friendly Validators

Buterin Wants to Speed Up Ethereum 2.0 Transition With ETH1-Friendly Validators

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin wants to speed up transition to Ethereum 2.0 with new type of validator known as “eth1-friendly validators”

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Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has recently published an alternative proposal for an early transition to Ethereum 2.0.

In a Dec. 23 post on the ETH Research forum, Buterin has set out an “accelerated schedule” for the transition from Ethereum 1.0 to Ethereum 2.0 through a new type of ETH validator referred to as “eth1-friendly validators.”

According to Vitalik, this new alternative proposal will require less “rearchitecting” in the network. He wrote:

“Specifically, it requires stateless clients, but NOT stateless miners and NOT webassembly, and so requires much less rearchitecting to accomplish.”

At the same time, the proposed alternative transition would still be done using a procedure similar to the previously described transition to Ethereum 2.0, Vitalik noted.

Ethereum core devs still have Ethereum 2.0 transition scheduled for Jan. 3, 2020

Ethereum 2.0 is a major network upgrade on the Ethereum blockchain that is designed to shift its current Proof-of-Work consensus algorithm to Proof-of-Stake. As soon as the Ethereum blockchain will transform to a PoS consensus, the block validation function will be passed from miners to special network validators.

As previously reported, the first “phase zero” stage of the Ethereum’s transition to Ethereum 2.0 is expected to take place on Jan. 3, 2020.

According to the new alternative proposal by Vitalik, eth1-friendly validators would be expected to maintain both the old Ethereum 1.0 node and the Ethereum 2.0 Beacon Chain. Buterin suggested the following:

“Validators that want to participate in the eth1 system can register themselves as eth1-friendly validators, and would be expected to maintain an eth1 full node in addition to their beacon node. The eth1 full node would download all blocks on shard 0 and maintain an updated full eth1 state.”

Vitalik says transaction costs on the Ethereum blockchain could rise 5-10%

As a result of the proposed transition procedure, the transaction costs on the Ethereum network may slightly increase, Buterin added. According to Ethereum co-founder, calling a contract would require an additional 1-2 gas per byte of code, while a simple ERC20 transaction would rise 5-10%. Buterin concluded:

“This would actually be not that punitive to average applications, though many apps would need to rearchitect themselves to use fewer full-sized contracts. There would be some exceptional applications that become considerably less viable. A simple ERC20 transaction (including DAI) would maybe become at most ~5-10% more expensive.”

While Buterin believes that Proof-of-Work consensus algorithm will make the Ethereum blockchain more secure than Bitcoin (BTC), some crypto community players think that Ethereum’s plans to shift Ethereum 1.0 to Ethereum 2.0 show that that Ethereum is not proven to date.


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Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin wants to speed up transition to Ethereum 2.0 with new type of validator known as “eth1-friendly validators”

South Korean Startup Claims to Have Solved Blockchain’s Speed Problem

South Korean Startup Claims to Have Solved Blockchain’s Speed Problem

South Korean startup reportedly develops a new technology that reduces blockchain transaction times to fractions of a second

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The South Korean-based firm Bloom Technology announced that they have created a new technology that is able to speed up transactions on the blockchain.

On Dec. 3, United Press International reported that Bloom Technology’s CEO, Lee Sang-yoon, said that the company’s Lotus Chain technology has been able to reduce blockchain transaction processing times to fractions of a second. 

One single blockchain transaction takes less than 0.23 seconds

The company reportedly conducted a public test with 635 participating nodes to reveal the transaction speed of the Lotus Chain technology. The results showed that a single blockchain transaction took between 0.13-0.23 seconds. Korea Blockchain Association Vice Chairman Moon Young-bae commented on the tests:

„Locus Chain is still under development to become a complete version. But I believe that the technology is already commercially viable […] I think it is a real deal.“

Lee further hinted at the importance of faster blockchain transactions by pointing out that transactions at present often take “more than 10 minutes for cryptocurrencies and even longer than an hour for Bitcoin.” 

South Korea to provide a legal basis for crypto

In November, South Korea’s National Assembly national policy committee passed a bill designed to provide a legal basis for crypto in the country and bring regulatory clarity and transparency to crypto markets in South Korea. The bill still needs to be approved by the judiciary committee, but, if approved, the law would come into force in 2020.

This is not the first attempt by South Korean authorities to provide more regulatory clarity to crypto markets. In early 2018, South Korean regulators banned anonymous trading on crypto exchanges in line with anti-money laundering and identification efforts in the country.


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South Korean startup reportedly develops a new technology that reduces blockchain transaction times to fractions of a second

How Can Blockchain Disrupt Supply Chains in the Fashion Industry?

How Can Blockchain Disrupt Supply Chains in the Fashion Industry?

How blockchain technology improves the speed of supply chains in the fashion industry

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When receiving new shirts you’d bought online, or bought some jeans from one of the fashion stores on your street, the question that may have come to mind then was, how did these items get to be in my hands? The answer is supply chains. 

Supply chains in the fashion industry organize people, activities and information to move fashion products from the producer to the consumer. Although supply chains have undergone a revolution since the advent of the internet and artificial intelligence, that revolution might be incomplete without the introduction of the decentralized, distributed and public digital ledger known as blockchain technology.

Blockchain technology prevents product fraud in supply chains

Blockchain brings complete transparency to the fashion industry. Suppose you ordered a pair of shoes from your local store and it is labeled “Made in Italy” — how can you be sure that the shoe really was made in Italy? Visual Capitalist reports that counterfeit goods have caused damage worth around $300 billion to the global economy. 

Considering how large the counterfeit goods industry is, we can’t always depend on product tags to accurately show the origin of a product. Blockchain solves this problem by keeping unalterable records of the product journey from raw material to finished product, which makes it impossible for fake products to be verified on the network. Decentralized applications for verifying the origin of purchased goods will enable customers to scan the product code and see the product journey.

Blockchain technology prevents accounting fraud

Blockchain technology solves the problem of accounting fraud in supply chains by creating blocks of records that cannot be altered. For example, if Supplier A were to supply through a traditional supply chain, accounting problems may be encountered on both the supplier and the consumer end because information throughout the supply chain can be altered and the middleman could change the amount being supplied, which poses an issue for verification. 

On the other hand, if Supplier A is sending 50 shirts to Consumer B through blockchain technology, the number of shirts and the amount to be paid for the shirts cannot be altered on the network, thereby preventing fraud.

Blockchain supply chains are faster than traditional supply chains

Any fashion supplier knows the importance of delivering new waves of stock faster and more efficiently. Even though transactions on a blockchain can take between 10 minutes and several hours to undergo verifications due to limits on the network’s transaction volume, some new blockchain projects now have improved transaction speeds. 

The speed of a blockchain network can ensure that verifying the authenticity of supplied fashion goods is completed within microseconds of arrival, and with the removal of middlemen from the supply chain, goods can be supplied at a faster rate, improving the efficiency and quality of goods supplied. Fashion products that are returned due to defects can also be processed through a blockchain network without any alteration.

Blockchain brings innovation through decentralized applications

Blockchain is a new technology that optimizes supply chains across a wide range of industries. For example, New Balance now uses the Cardano blockchain to authenticate its shoes, and users can verify information about a pair of sneakers with the data recorded the blockchain; while Provenance, a blockchain supply chain company, operates on open-source software, which encourages developers across the world to contribute to their project. 

Blockchain technology has solved a significant number of industry and technological issues by preventing fraud and hacking, removing middlemen and ensuring that the right goods are supplied to consumers as quickly as possible. Blockchain technology will increase the technological advancement of supply chains in the fashion industry. The future we look forward to in the supply chains of the fashion industry is here.

The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

Oluwatobi Joel is a U.S.-based freelance copywriter, community manager, blockchain expert and serial entrepreneur. He has worked with various blockchain startups as a marketing strategist. He is also the co-founder of Lootner, a Bitcoin reward website.


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How blockchain technology improves the speed of supply chains in the fashion industry

SWIFT Vs. Ripple — The Importance of Speed in Cross-Border Payments

SWIFT Vs. Ripple — The Importance of Speed in Cross-Border Payments

Will correspondent banking be phased out in favor of more instantaneous blockchain-based cross-border payment systems?

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The emergence of blockchain technology has undoubtedly altered the course of global digital payment development. With the likes of Ripple and Facebook’s Libra challenging the monopoly of banks and other financial institutions, mainstream players like SWIFT, Visa and Mastercard have been forced to seek significant improvements to the legacy system.

Moving forward, the burning issue appears to be relevance. Blockchain systems run on the premise of replacing the legacy system with a more secure and efficient payment infrastructure. The mainstream players seem forced to face the quintessential evolutionary puzzle of “adapt or die out.”

Like in every technological race, competitors have to figure out which parameters will give them an edge over the rest of the playing field. Transaction speed, security and cost-efficiency are a few of the pain points in the modern-day cross-border remittance industry. 

Faster, cheaper and even faster

Fast, cheap, good — the three vertices of the project management triangle arguably describe the balancing act faced by companies looking to lead the way in the developing payment sector. As reported by Cointelegraph, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications (SWIFT) recently trialed a new instant cross-border payment system that offers significant improvements in throughput time.

The move is part of SWIFT’s plans of enabling instant settlement capabilities through its Global Payments Innovation (GPI) in the wake of imminent competition from the likes of Ripple. SWIFT also promises that the new system will reduce the cost of adoption for financial institutions that use the framework.

Related: XRP, Libra and Visa to Fight It Out for Cross-Border Remittance Crown

Usually, the balancing act for most projects is how to attain two out of the three parameters previously listed. For cross-border remittance, technological innovation arguably takes care of the speed and cost components. Blockchain companies such as Ripple promise transaction settlements in as little as four seconds, costing a few cents to move money from one corner of the globe to another.

Cointelegraph spoke with Kenny Li, the CEO of Worthyt and a blockchain technology commentator, about the overall importance of transaction speed in the developing cross-border remittance arena. According to Li:

“I do think that people care about speed, definitely. Speed and convenience are more important, even in the blockchain space. That’s why people are willing to trade the security of decentralization and ownership with the convenience of speed on centralized exchanges. So, I do think that the fast ones will win. But I don’t think you need to be the fastest. Fast enough is enough. Visa does around 1-2k transactions per second (tps). There are blockchains that can already do that with delegated PoS — Proof of Stake, (EOS being the prime example, and I’m sure Libra will have no trouble with it as it also seems to use delegated PoS).”

Li, however, maintained that transaction throughput on its own isn’t the be-all and end-all for a system like global remittance. Explaining further, Li opined:

“Once you hit a threshold then the rest is just bragging rights. I think that threshold may be 3-5k tps (rough napkin estimate based on an assumption of Visa’s market share, penetration in firewalled countries like China, global penetration, and the fact that one system is unlikely to be a monopoly).”

Take Ripple, for example: The company says XRP can handle 1,500 TPS and is scalable up to 50,000 TPS. On a global scale, 50,000 TPS might even be considered overkill. However, is being the fastest and the cheapest enough for blockchain systems to displace the traditional banking apparatus?

The burden of banking

Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse has consistently highlighted a particular aspect of the legacy financial system that creates inefficiencies in international payments — the need for correspondent banking relationships.

Commercial banks around the world tend to hold accounts with correspondent banks overseas to implement cross-border wire transfers, usually over the SWIFT network. Blockchain payment proponents like Garlinghouse say the Nostro/Vostro account mechanism creates delays and inefficiencies in the system.

For wire transfers via a system like SWIFT, the participating banks need to have correspondent relationships abroad. A correspondent bank makes or receives payments on behalf of another financial institution in a different country.

For example, if Bank A in Country 1 needs to send a wire transfer to Bank B in Country 2, Bank A will contact its correspondent bank in Country 2 to facilitate the payment. Usually, Bank A would maintain an account with this correspondent bank.

To the correspondent bank in this instance, the account is called a Nostro account, while for Bank A — the counterparty — that same account is referred to as a Vostro account.

According to the Bank of International Settlements (BIS), global correspondent banking relationships are declining by the year. Apart from the shrinking nature of the network, BIS reports that it is becoming even more concentrated, thus worsening the lack of access to international payments for historically disenfranchised remittance corridors.

The emergence of new international payment methods is one of the reasons identified by BIS that is responsible for the decline of the correspondent banking network. An excerpt from the report reads:

“The continuing decline in the number of correspondent banking relationships in many countries around the world remains a source of concern. In affected jurisdictions, there may be an impact on the ability to send and receive international payments, which could push people into using unregulated and potentially unsafe ‘shadow payments’ with further consequences for growth, financial inclusion, and international trade.”

Thus, while SWIFT can attempt to match Ripple’s speed, the correspondent banking relationship might mean it is only a faster iteration of the current system. Also, with some corridors already having trouble being served by legacy finance, newer payment portals might constitute a better proposition.

For Ripple, banks do not need to hold correspondent relationships abroad to facilitate wire transfers. Instead, financial institutions acquire Ripple’s xRapid software and use XRP as a bridge currency for instant cross-border remittance.

Blockchain companies, however, have to worry about the regulatory implications of their business model. Where SWIFT can operate from a trusted position as a legacy system, Ripple and the likes need to satisfy regulators in multiple jurisdictions. 

The emergence of Facebook’s Libra project also carries with it the possibility of increased regulatory scrutiny for all things crypto- and blockchain-related. Even Ripple’s CEO has concerns that the company could become caught in the middle of regulatory firestorm ignited by Libra.

Fully blockchain or a hybrid of DLT and centralized systems?

In the pursuit of the most efficient framework for cross-border payments, projects likely have to consider the tradeoff between centralized and decentralized architectures. However, there appears to be an emerging trend of utilizing hybrid systems that take the best from both worlds.

Back in June 2019, Cointelegraph reported that SWIFT has plans to allow firms running distributed ledger technology (DLT) systems to use its GPI platform. Visa also announced a new centralized payment network for business transactions that incorporates elements of decentralized technology.

There is also the Fnality Consortium that plans to use utility settlement coins to facilitate point-to-point cross-border payment transactions. Major banks from the United States, Europe, and Asia are already part of the project. Like the Visa B2B Connect initiative, Fnality sits at the heart of the inter-bank matrix, eliminating the complex intermediary steps for international payments. While the areas of focus appear to be different, the operating philosophies exhibit some striking similarities.

As events unfold in the developing payment environment, there appears to be an emerging trend of legacy systems and novel innovators copying aspects of each other’s operations. Mainstream actors like SWIFT and Visa are developing protocols that will interface with DLT systems, while Ripple is seeking to acquire the trusted status of the established financial apparatus as a gateway to ensuring its network becomes the de facto channel for global remittance along multiple payment corridors.


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Will correspondent banking be phased out in favor of more instantaneous blockchain-based cross-border payment systems?

Crypto Platform Launches Smart Trading Feature to Speed Up Process of Buying and Selling

Crypto Platform Launches Smart Trading Feature to Speed Up Process of Buying and Selling

A crypto trading platform says it offers an array of novel features — including smart trading, a marketplace for strategies and complimentary backtesting #SPONSORED

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A crypto platform has unveiled a new Smart Trading feature that enables existing strategies to be executed with ease — cutting down the steps required to complete a trade so that users can react faster to ever-changing markets.

Through Kryll, crypto enthusiasts can easily choose the exchange they wish to use for buying or selling cryptocurrency, their desired trading pair and the amount they wish to transact. From here, buy targets and stop-losses can be added instantly. For those who wish to embark on more complex strategies, an advanced mode is available.

According to the company’s website, its emphasis has been on creating an interface that is easy for both inexperienced and seasoned traders to follow — with a clever design offering familiarity to the pieces of software we all use every day. Strategies can be built from scratch using a drag-and-drop tool, delivering “an infinite number of combinations” for crypto enthusiasts to experiment with. Whereas other platforms can be somewhat more prescriptive when it comes to the options afforded to a community, Kryll’s aim is to put the power firmly in their user’s hands, the team notes. 

This approach is also put to the test through a novel feature in which users can rent strategies from fellow traders in a custom-build marketplace, giving them the chance to explore combinations they may never have contemplated before. As well as helping to democratize the trading world, this method helps deliver a whole new social element to strategizing — and successful users are incentivized to make their methods available for others to peruse.

Kryll is available here

“Powerful tools”

Kryll says its smart trading functionality and marketplace is complemented by a range of powerful features that make it easier for users to execute strategies in line with their vision — and faster. A pro mode delivers detailed charts and top-of-the-line tools that help traders put their strategies to the test, bringing technical analysis into the heart of every transaction. A companion app also means that traders can effortlessly access their strategies while they are on the move.

The company claims that, since its platform was publicly released back in January 2019, it has attracted more than 11,000 registered users. Trading efficiency has further been boosted by the addition of new blocks — and Kryll says that it stands out from the crowd because of how its business has flourished ever since its initial coin offering concluded, while others have faded into insignificance or closed altogether.

For everyone

According to the company, every single user has the potential to benefit from massive amounts of data — whether they want to review market movements over a 24-month period or over the space of a minute. Unlimited back-testing without any impediments is offered free of charge, and automated strategies devised through Kryll can run 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Although no subscription is required, the platform enables traders to further enhance the speeds of back-testing, boost their number of trading spots and lower their costs by signing up to one of five pricing plans.

Further milestones are planned for the rest of 2019 and 2020. A global marketing boost is scheduled for the summer, and the team says that the power of Kryll will be “unleashed” when version two of its “Editor” platform is released this winter. Looking ahead to next year, machine learning-based features are tipped to launch early next year.

Kryll describes itself as an agnostic trading platform and already supports those who wish to work through major exchanges including Binance, Bittrex, Liquid and KuCoin.

Disclaimer. Cointelegraph does not endorse any content or product on this page. While we aim at providing you all important information that we could obtain, readers should do their own research before taking any actions related to the company and carry full responsibility for their decisions, nor this article can be considered as an investment advice.


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A crypto trading platform says it offers an array of novel features — including smart trading, a marketplace for strategies and complimentary backtesting #SPONSORED

Telegram’s TON Blockchain Is Live in Private Testing Mode, Shows High Speed: Report

Telegram’s TON Blockchain Is Live in Private Testing Mode, Shows High Speed: Report

Telegram has launched a private beta testing of Telegram Open Network blockchain, a local report says

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Global messaging app Telegram has reportedly launched a private beta testing of its blockchain, Telegram Open Network (TON), Russian media outlet Vedomosti reports on April 11.

According to Vedomosti, Telegram has opened access to a testing version of TON Blockchain to a limited number of global developers, including Russian dev teams.

Citing two anonymous persons who acquired the early access, the news agency reported that the dev teams were enabled to set up TON Blockchain nodes.

While testing has not provided any specific outcomes, the unnamed testers revealed that the TON Blockchain has demonstrated an “extremely high transaction speed.” However, the specific indicators could not be delivered, since the blockchain’s code — including smart contracts — were in the process of testing, one of the persons has said.

Privacy-focused encrypted messenger Telegram was founded by the brothers Nikolai and Pavel Durov in 2013, and as of March 2018, the service amassed 200 million active users. Recently, three million new users signed up for the app over a 24 hours period when Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp were all experiencing significant outages worldwide, as Durov reported on its official Telegram channel on March 14.

Telegram raised around $1.7 billion in two private initial coin offering (ICO) rounds for both Telegram and its TON platform in 2018.

While Vedomosti reported that Telegram would release a test version of TON in the fall of 2018, there has been no official data on the expected date of TON Blockchain launch, with Durov having declined to confirm a concrete date for TON’s release in March 2019.

Recently, Cointelegraph reported that purchase agreements for messenger service Telegram tokens will be terminated if TON does not launch by Oct. 31, 2019.


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Telegram has launched a private beta testing of Telegram Open Network blockchain, a local report says

BitTorrent’s Tron-Based BTT Token Integration Will Launch by Summer

BitTorrent’s Tron-Based BTT Token Integration Will Launch by Summer

BitTorrent Speed system, which will integrate the Tron-based BTT token into the popular µTorrent Windows client, will launch by summer

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BitTorrent’s system dubbed BitTorrent Speed, which will integrate the Tron-based BTT token into the popular µTorrent Windows client, will launch by summer. The company has confirmed this in a press release shared with Cointelegraph on Jan. 19.

BitTorrent Speed will issue cryptocurrency token rewards to users that serve content to others via the µTorrent network. The client’s users — which number more than 100 million, according to BitTorrent — will also be able to pay for faster downloads with the same tokens.

The company also announced that to all accounts that are not based in the United States, the token will only be available for purchase on the Binance Launchpad platform.

BitTorrent is a peer-to-peer (P2P) communication protocol for online file sharing, and the eponymous company that maintains it. The BitTorrent network is similar to Bitcoin in structure, as they both support decentralized sharing of information and lack a single point of authority.

Earlier this month, Cointelegraph reported on the launch of the BTT token. The project is reportedly part of BitTorrent’s broader ambition to create a decentralized content distribution platform using cryptocurrency.

Former chief strategy officer at BitTorrent, Simon Morris, claimed in a recent interview that Tron will not be able to manage the transaction volume needed to tokenize BitTorrent.

In response to Morris’ claims, a Tron spokesperson told Cointelegraph in private comments:

„Morris appears to have little insight into BitTorrent operational plans since his departure. Actions and execution will prove louder than the words of a disgruntled former employee.“


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BitTorrent Speed system, which will integrate the Tron-based BTT token into the popular µTorrent Windows client, will launch by summer

State Farm Tests Blockchain Solution to Speed Up Auto Insurance Claims

State Farm Tests Blockchain Solution to Speed Up Auto Insurance Claims

U.S.-based insurance giant State Farm is testing blockchain technology to speed up the subrogation process in auto insurance claims

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U.S.-based insurance company State Farm is testing a blockchain-based solution to speed up the subrogation process for auto claims, according to an announcement published Dec. 10.

State Farm is a large group of insurance and financial services firms that provides auto insurance in the U.S. The organization was ranked 38th on the 2018 Fortune 500 list of companies. Per the company’s website, it processes 38,300 claims per day and has nearly 519,000 accounts in mutual funds.

State Farm is working on blockchain-based solution to speed up the subrogation processes in the insurance industry. Subrogation is a legal right held by most insurance carriers to legally pursue a third party that caused an insurance loss to the insured, and is usually the last part of an insurance claims process.

State Farm is reportedly testing a blockchain solution collaboratively with another insurer, to see whether it can reduce the time needed to complete the subrogation process by automatically compiling all subrogation payment amounts.

According to Mike Fields, State Farm’s innovation executive, “subrogation is a relatively manual, time-consuming process often requiring physical checks to be mailed on a claim-by-claim basis between insurers.” He added:

“It [blockchain] helps us automate a manual process securely and creates a permanent transaction record of each payment which can easily be verified for accuracy. It also has the potential to decrease the amount of time for consumers to receive their deductible reimbursement.”

Insurance companies globally have been integrating blockchain technology into their operations. Last month, Japanese insurance company Sompo partnered with pan-African digital payment platform BTC Africa, also known as BitPesa. The partnership is focused on the “digitalization of global remittance services.”

In September, major insurance firm the People’s Insurance Company of China (PICC) partnered with blockchain platform VeChain and global quality assurance and risk management company DNV GL to make their business more time and cost efficient. The partnership also aims improve fraud prevention, Know Your Customer (KYC) compliance, as well as the claims experience.

Meanwhile, market research firm MarketsandMarkets predicted that blockchain in insurance market will grow to $1.4 billion by the end of 2023, at a compound annual growth rate of 84.9 percent.


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U.S.-based insurance giant State Farm is testing blockchain technology to speed up the subrogation process in auto insurance claims

Blockchain Could ‘Speed up the Economy,’ Says Nigerian Presidential Candidate

Blockchain Could ‘Speed up the Economy,’ Says Nigerian Presidential Candidate

Presidential candidate of the leading opposition party in Nigeria promises to regulate blockchain and cryptocurrency if elected

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The presidential candidate of Nigeria’s leading opposition party has promised to support blockchain and cryptocurrency, local news outlet the DailyPost article reported Nov. 24.

The Nigerian news outlet reportedly analyzed the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate Atiku Abubakar’s “Get Nigeria Working Again” policy that he reportedly promised to enact if he is elected president February 16, 2019.

DailyPost reports that in the document, the politician declared that “he aims to speed up the economy positively through blockchain and cryptocurrency.”

According to DailyPost, Abubaka stated that to unlock “the potentials of the new economy” PDP “shall promote the production of a comprehensive policy on blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.”

DailyPost also quoted Abubakar platform as stating “regulation will provide clarity” in this “industry that consists of 1,800 currency types.” The terms of the mandate are also promised to be “managed in a way that provides job opportunities as well as income for the government and people of Nigeria.”

As Cointelegraph reported in mid-October, the Nigerian government has been partnering with local startups to develop blockchain in the country. In March, Nigerian regulator Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) warned against the use of cryptocurrencies because transactions are not insured.


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Presidential candidate of the leading opposition party in Nigeria promises to regulate blockchain and cryptocurrency if elected