Flare Network to Integrate Litecoin Ahead of Its Mainnet Launch; FLR Airdrop to LTC Holders Coming

Flare Network to Integrate Litecoin Ahead of Its Mainnet Launch; FLR Airdrop to LTC Holders Coming

Litecoin is getting a significant use case as it integrates with Flare, opening up Litecoin to Ethereum style smart contracts.

Flare Networks, a smart contract integration protocol, has announced that it is gearing up to integrate Litecoin. According to an official tweet, the Ripple Labs-backed network will support the Litecoin protocol as part of the lead-up to its launch, which is set for the year’s second quarter.

Litecoin Comes to Ethereum

Flare said that the Litecoin integration would improve Litecoin’s compatibility with decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols. DeFi users will now be able to interact with Litecoin on Flare with Ethereum-style smart contracts, all in an environment that ensures interoperability and composability.

A follow-up tweet confirmed that Flare plans to airdrop its FLR tokens to Litecoin users as part of its anticipation building for the mainnet launch.

Flare also added that it would reduce the number of FLR tokens that it had planned to distribute to its founders by five billion. The reduction will help the company facilitate the airdrop to Litecoin users, with Flare promising to reveal more details on the airdrop soon.

Many have followed Flare’s forthcoming launch with great hype. The Ripple-backed network has been making moves for a while now, promising a new age in the crypto space as it ushers in more functionalities.

In August, it marked a milestone as it revealed the details of a new bridge to connect XRP with the Ethereum blockchain. The trustless bridge will allow all XRP tokens on the Flare network – known as FXRP – to be used within the network. At the same time, Flare explained that the bridge would provide a “scaling platform” for Ethereum tokens and applications.

As for XRP, Flare will integrate the Ethereum Virtual Machine to offer advanced smart contracts on its network. The move was praised by many, including Ripple Labs CEO Brad Garlinghouse and the XRP Army.

Flare’s Relationship with Ripple

Flare eventually conducted an airdrop of its tokens to XRP users on December 12. At the time, XRP had joined several large-cap cryptocurrencies that had rallied. Sadly, things went awry for XRP after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) slammed Ripple Labs with a lawsuit.

According to a complaint with a Manhattan federal court, the SEC alleged that Ripple had engaged in an unregistered securities offering when it conducted its XRP Initial Coin Offering (ICO) in 2013. The case is set for pretrial hearings in February, although many in the industry have reacted to it.

Some cryptocurrency exchanges delisted XRP, while others halted trading in the asset pending the hearing’s outcome. Despite the delisting, XRP rallied by almost 50 percent last week, as every crypto rode Bitcoin’s bullish run. At press time, XRP is trading at $0.28, following a 14% decrease in price.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

New Mimblewimble Code & Community-wide Testnet Launch Might Come in Q1 2021

Implementation of privacy features on Litecoin while other privacy coins getting delisted have people bullish on LTC.

“The first implementation of non-interactive txs is finally ready for testing!” said David Burkett while sharing the update on implementing Mimblewimble to bring privacy to the network.

In the month of December, the first-ever implementation of one-sided txs on Mimblewimble is completed and ready for testing and review and MWEB components have also been added to the GUI.

Going forward, one more week would take to prep Grin++for the final planned hard fork of Grin. And once the new version is released, Burkett will get the new MWEB code ready and launch the new community-wide testnet. This will allow everyone, regardless of technical abilities, to test out the MWEB and provide feedback.

However, there is still no exact date ready for when the code will be finished, but Burkett did ensure that he is “getting very close” but with a lot of automated tests to backfill still, a few outstanding questions about max weight for the EBs & peg-in/peg-out maturity, and lots of small cleanup tasks remaining. He said,

“I’m still expecting to have the code finished sometime this quarter (Q1 2021) though, so it won’t be long.”

Making it a Reality

As per the original plan, the MWEB was to be completed in a year but the team is already two months behind. Burkett said,

“While we didn’t quite meet our original timeline, it wasn’t for a lack of trying. I’ve put in countless late-night hours working to make MWEB a reality.”

“But there’s simply too much at stake to release anything less than perfection. LTC deserves it, and we’re all doing everything we can to deliver on that.”

The delay has been because of completely rewriting the code from scratch, while initially it was thought that Grin++’s code would be reused but it didn’t mesh well with the LTC codebase.

Additionally, the original plan included only interactive transactions but that meant users had to be online to receive funds, which would’ve been a whole lot worse for usability, noted the developer who further shared that “at the time, non-interactive txs were not even considered possible in MW, but we figured out a way to do it.”

Enjoying the Greens

During the update, Burkett also urged the community to continue with more donations as he said, “despite huge LTC gains, only 0.25 LTC were donated this month.” Every donation would be matched to litoshi-for-litoshi by Bitcoin creator Charlie Lee.

The price of LTC has been enjoying a rally since 4Q20, moving in tandem with Bitcoin. While Bitcoin went crazy with its over 315% gains in 2020, Litecoin surged just over 220%.

The fourth-largest cryptocurrency with a market cap of $10.21 billion is currently trading above $153, up 190% since Oct.

Amidst the ongoing delisting of privacy featured coins, like Zcash (ZEC), Monero (XMR), and DASH from crypto exchanges, some speculate it could make LTC more valuable. Crypto analyst Alex Saunders said,

“More privacy coin delisting news today. My thesis & narrative around Litecoin’s 2nd coming strengthens. With XRP out of the picture & LTC’s regulatory certainty (age, distribution, decentralization, Grayscale Trust) it could regain #3 as it implements privacy features.

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Author: AnTy

Litecoin MimbleWimble Testnet Launched, Privacy Will Finally be Here in 2021

Litecoin MimbleWimble testnet is here, which will bring privacy to the network. Scheduled for launch on Sept. 30, not many participated in keeping it running as such MimbleWimble testnet has been relaunched. The protocol is designed to enhance privacy and obfuscate the traceability of distributed ledger transactions.

Only a few nodes connected and mined, so not “enough blocks to activate mimblewimble yet,” but as more peers get onboard, they will be able to activate the testnet, said Grin developer David Burkett who has been working on this implementation.

MimbleWimble is a modified implementation of the proof-of-work (PoW) algorithm that underpins Bitcoin. In this, blocks appear as a single large transaction, preventing the individual inputs and outputs of a transaction from being identified. Burkett also wrote,

“I’m still roughing in very minimal cli wallet support, but hopefully we’ll have a simple way to create mimblewimble transactions by the time it activates.”

Despite this news, LTC failed to pump and continues to trade around $46, down 87.55% from its all-time high. One of the worst performers of 2020, LTC saw returns just about 8.65% YTD.

Now that “Mimblewimble Extension Block” (MWEB) testnet is working, the developer will be focusing on making it easy for non-technical Litecoin users to test it out as well — this means wallet support, automated builds, and better documentation. He said,

“Once I’m confident everything is working as designed, I’ll start looking for ways to break the testnet, to make sure we find and resolve any security or stability weaknesses.”

Burkett also stated that next month, he would share a detailed plan about the remaining work required to get MWEB merged to the main repo, so that node operators and miners can start signaling for activation sometime in 2021.

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Author: AnTy

Litecoin Back in the Limelight with A Network Bustling with Activity

In the middle of last week, Litecoin started surging. With a jump of 30%, LTC went to nearly $70; a level last seen in February 2020 before the coronavirus sell-off, only to come crashing back down to $61 along with the rest of the crypto market.

The digital asset, which has fallen down to the 8th spot and is up only 47% in 2020, is still down 83% from its all-time high of $373.

Litecoin, which was once purported as Bitcoin’s silver, has been absent from the market for some time now. It was in early last year, late January 2019, that Litecoin creator Charlie Lee tried to bring the limelight back to this digital asset by announcing that fungibility and privacy will be coming to it.

But it has been much later that the development started in this direction, for which the community and Lee have been providing the funding.

Grin developer David Burkett is the one who is working on Litecoin mimblewimble implementation, and according to his monthly updates, the testnet is on track for a September launch.

There are also some talks of a possible collaboration between Litecoin and Cardano, but that’s to be seen, if and when it will materialize.

What’s happening

Lee, who is infamous for selling his LTC stash at the top of the market, today took to Twitter to share that Litecoin has seen a bustle of activity recently.

Privacy/fungibility with Mimblewimble testnet is coming soon with the Litecoin Visa debit card to be launched as well.

Grayscale Litecoin Trust (LTCN) has also become publicly tradeable, joining five of its other products.

On the network front, Litecoin’s hash rate is up 50% this year and transactions 100% with about $500 million sent per day, shared Lee. Total LTC addresses meanwhile are up 400% in the last three years.

Moreover, Litecoin SegWit usage has reached 80%, more than Bitcoin’s 50%, which Lee highlighted is because of Blockchain.com not implementing SegWit.

When it comes to transfer counts, Bitcoin recorded 178k per day while Litecoin only had 2.7k on January 1st, 2017, which has now reached 345k and 50k, respectively. Meanwhile, in terms of the transfer value, currently, Bitcoin is processing about $3.5 billion compared to around $100 million on the Litecoin network, as per Coin Metrics.

All this activity and price action is surely working on Litecoin’s favor as people take notice of it. Analyst Mati Greenspan has 18.17% of his portfolio in this digital asset.

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Author: AnTy

Grayscale Receives FINRA Approval to List Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin on The Stock Market

Grayscale Investments’ two more products, Grayscale Bitcoin Cash Trust and Grayscale Litecoin Trust, have received approval from FINRA for public quotations under the ticker BCHG and LTCN on OTC Markets.

With this move, both Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Litecoin (LTC) will be trading on the public stock market for the first time.

The New York-based digital currency asset manager announced on Monday that regulators had given the go-ahead for the sale of its two products, covering two new cryptos to the public.

The company that makes digital assets available in the form of stocks will make these new productions available to the general public in the next two to four weeks.

Grayscale stocks trade on OTCQX, an over-the-counter (OTC) market that is overseen by regulator FINRA, and here securities do not need to be registered with the SEC.

More options for institutional investors

Grayscale’s crypto products amount to shares in a trust that holds the underlying digital asset.

With this approval, institutional investors are now able to get exposure to these two crypto assets that Grayscale sells in the forms of shares, which, as we have seen in the case of both Bitcoin and Ethereum results in a significant premium to the underlying asset. Grayscale’s managing director, Michael Sonnenshein said,

“Grayscale builds investment products that operate within existing regulatory frameworks. With two additional products gaining approval for public trading, we’re broadening access for investors to gain exposure to the digital currency asset class.”

In its Q2 2020 report, Grayscale shared that it had the largest quarterly inflows ever at $905.8 million. Not only GBTC and ETHE saw record inflows, but Grayscale Litecoin Trust saw its largest inflows to date as well. Also, Grayscale Bitcoin Cash Trust recorded its largest inflows since Q2 2018. The report read,

“After a period of slow growth, Grayscale Bitcoin Cash Trust and Grayscale Litecoin Trust have seen a marked uptick in investor interest. The two trusts combined have now reached over $20 million in inflows since inception.”

With this, the total number of digital assets available to the public as shares have come to six. Already, Grayscale’s bitcoin product has found a special place among millennials investors on apps like Robinhood. Also, a Charles Schwab report from December stated that the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) was one of its top five equities held by millennials, even ahead of Netflix.

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Author: AnTy

Litecoin Core Major Release Builds ‘Functional Testing Framework’ for Privacy & Fungibility

Litecoin has released the latest version of Litecoin Core 0.18.1 and is recommended for everyone to upgrade which comes with new features, performance improvements, and various bug fixes.

This new major version release is supported on the Linux kernel, macOS 10.10+, and Windows 7 and newer. It should also work on most other Unix-like systems but is not as frequently tested on them.

In order to upgrade, you need to shut down the older version. Once it is completely shut down, you have to run the installer on Windows or copy /Applications/Litecoin-Qt on Mac or litecoind/litecoin-qt on Linux.

The issue in this version is with Wallet GUI as such is recommended not to use coin control features with multiple wallets loaded.

As for the notable changes, there have been new RPCs, configuration option changes, and when called to getblocktemplate, it will fail if segwit rule is not specified in relation to mining.

Also, when creating a fee above the default 0.1 LTC, as the feeRate argument is specified in LTC per kilobyte, not litoshi per byte, instead of rounding down the fee, the RPC commands, walletcreatefundedpsbt and fundrawtransaction will now fail.

Furthermore, in about next year, starting with Litecoin Core 0.20, Litecoin Core will default to native segwit addresses (bech32) to provide additional fee savings. If they see enough additional adoption, they will instead default to bech32 receiving addresses in Litecoin Core 0.20.

Mimblewimble Implementation Update

On May 1st, David Burkett, Grin++, and Litecoin developer posted April progress update on the Mimblewimble integration of Litecoin, claiming that a “functional testing framework” has been built.

Burkett has started integrating with the Litecoin codebase, which began with ConnectBlock logic that validates blocks before adding them to the chain, and has mostly completed end-to-end block validation tests.

Back in March, Burkett had predicted that the Mimblewimble would be running on the Litecoin testnet by the end of this summer.

As for Grin++, they have prepared to have the first non-beta version of Grin++.

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Author: AnTy

Japanese Financial Giant Rakuten Wallet To Roll Out Margin Trading with LTC, XRP Support

  • Rakuten, the crypto wallet and exchange platform is adding Litecoin (LTC) and Ripple (XRP) for margin trading.
  • The Japan-based financial behemoth has set its sights on offering its clients digital asset margin trading services.

The announcement was made on Monday Rakuten aims to roll out its new services over this spring, after already starting the registration process.

Up To 2x Leverage for Margin Calls Takers

Rakuten rolled out its services in August 2019. Entering the crypto trading market with Raketen Wallet. To begin, Rakuten began its trading services with only three currencies: Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH).

With the introduction of its margin services, Rakuten will also feature LTC and XRP, allowing traders to take long or short positions for: BTC/JPY, LTC/JPY, ETH/JPY, XRP/JPY AND BCH/JPY.

Within the announcement, Rakuten’s exchange platform will also offer up to 2x leverage to traders who take margin calls, while adhering to Japanese financial market regulator Financial Services Agency’s (FSA) demands for limits to crypto margin trading leverage to 2x from 4x.

The Crypto Market in Japan Is Progressing

In spite of the many hacks against Japanese crypto exchanges like Coincheck and Mt. Gox, Japan remains the largest crypto market for trading volumes. For things to remain the same, the FSA has made it compulsory for digital asset exchanges in the country to obtain a license.

Rakuten went through a broad rebranding campaign, changing its name from Everybody’s Bitcoin to Rakuten after being acquired for 265 million yen (about $2.4 million) back in 2018.

In order to increase its client base, and compete with other market players, its wallet enabled conversions of Rakuten loyalty points into digital assets. Here’s what the announcement from Monday reads:

“As the Rakuten Group’s virtual currency exchange business, Rakuten Wallet will continue to provide transaction services that customers can use safely and securely, and further expand its services by leveraging Group synergy.”

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Author: Oana Ularu

Cred and Litecoin Foundation Partner To Offer Up To 10% Interest on LTC Collateral

A press release from February 10th announces that the Litecoin Foundation and Cred have closed a partnership to offer interest on Litecoin (LTC) collateral.

This means Cred customers will be able to stake their coins and this way, earn an annual percentage rate of up to 10%. The partnership also enables holders of LTC to lend the cryptocurrency they’re holding at lucrative rates, just like it’s happening with decentralized finance (DeFi) Ethereum solutions.

See Benefits after a Six Month Commitment

In order to benefit from the interest, customers will have to be with Cred for a period of 6 months. The monthly interest will be paid in either crypto or a fiat currency. The other Cred partners are BitBuy, Uphold and Bitcoin.com. They will facilitate the credit as well. The Litecoin Foundation’s director Alan Austin explained why the partnership is so important for Litecoin by saying:

“Strong use cases should be one of the most important considerations when evaluating cryptocurrency. In addition to Litecoin’s reliability, use for payments and excellent liquidity, the ability to earn interest at attractive rates through Cred’s platform further strengthens this use case.”

Some Partnership Funds will Support the Development of Litecoin

Some of the funds obtained after the joint initiative are going to be used to support the development of Litecoin. Charlie Lee, the founder of Litecoin has already volunteered to make a 1% donation for the Foundation. As for Cred, the company has a crypto-based borrowing and lending platform. It’s also trying to create a credit accessing and maintaining history that’s available worldwide, by using the LBA token in order to supply the interest rate premiums. Cred was founded by Dan Schatt, the former executive at PayPal.

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Author: Oana Ularu

Litecoin (LTC) Poised to Break it’s Six Month Long Bear Channel

  • Litecoin faces the “largest miner capitulation” ever
  • Litecoin’s fundraising for Mimblewimble & Extension Block “going strong”

“I wouldn’t be surprised if LTC to leads a bullish breakout of BTC,” said on-chain analyst Willy Woo. And by the looks of it, we might be coming to that point.

While Chainlink (LINK) with over 11% and Tezos (XTZ) with 9% gains in the past 24 hours have been leading the market, Litecoin has been up 6%, close behind Bitcoin (up 6.94%), to lead the top 10 cryptocurrencies.

In the past 7 days, LTC has risen 12.20% to $48. This has been because as Woo explained Litecoin Difficulty ribbon is in recovery which should set up a “bullish breakout of the bearish channel.”

The hash rate of the Litecoin network has been falling ever since hitting an all-time high at 523.8 Th/s in July 2019. In mid-Dec, the hash rate seems to have bottomed at 130 Th/s as it starts climbing back up, currently at 162 Th/s.

This could also mean Litecoin leading a bullish breakout of BTC, he said, which wouldn’t be the first time.

Meanwhile, “1 day RSI breakout will very likely lead the LTCUSD price chart breaking its 6-month long bear channel,” said the analyst.

Largest Miner Capitulation Ever

Woo noted that this was also the “largest miner capitulation LTC has ever faced.”

Miner capitulation is basically when smaller mining operations gets forced into a difficult situation because of the fall in the prices of a crypto asset while their mining machines become technologically obsolete.

This forces these miners to sell their digital assets to keep their operations running and upgrade their systems.

When the profitability is limited, miners selling their crypto assets can turn into a vicious cycle. As Cole Garner, a popular cryptocurrency analyst explained,

“Undercapitalized miners panic sell, price dumps, longs get squeezed, stop losses cascade — then more miners lose their lunch.”

Fundraising for Mimblewimble & Extension Block Going Strong

On the development front, the fundraising for the Confidential Transaction Fund is “going strong” and the team is already one-fourth of the way there, as per the December update.

The Litecoin Foundation is also setting up a dedicated development fund that will go towards sponsoring David Burkett, a developer for Grin++ who will work on implementing Extension Block and MimbleWimble code for Litecoin to address the issue of fungibility.

Out of the $72,000 goal, a total of $23,768 has been raised, 0.04486046 in BTC ($376) and 497.72304626 in LTC ($23,392).

The lead developer of the Litecoin MimbleWimble proposal, Burkett is planning to split half of his 30 hours a week for Mimblewimble and the other half on Grin++. Burkett said in his November report,

“After months of planning, development of the mimblewimble extension block has officially started! My efforts this month focused mostly around restructuring the core logic (…) that involves all of the logging, serialization, crypto, error handling, and common data structures (headers/blocks/txs).”

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Author: AnTy

Litecoin One Step Closer to MimbleWimble, MW LIP Published on LTC Git Repository

Earlier this year, Litecoin creator Charlie Lee announced that soon confidential transactions and MimbleWimble implementation would be introduced to the 6th largest cryptocurrency.

Last month, it has been announced that the Litecoin Project is working with David Burkett, a Grin ++ developer to add MimbleWimble support to the Litecoin network.

Now, a draft of two Litecoin Improvement Proposals to implement MimbleWimble through Extension Blocks has been proposed on GitHub.

The LIP introduces opt-in MimbleWimble (MW) as a new transaction format through extension blocks. These blocks run alongside the main chain blocks at the same interval of 2.5 minutes. Inside the EB is where MW transactions occur.

Initially, it would be opt-in, meaning it’s up to users to use MW by using coins in and out of the EB through an integrating transaction.

MW with EB, the proposal states can be soft forked in via version bits. Old clients won’t be aware of the EB side but will only see the coins ending up in the anyone-can-spend address.

What are the Options?

Due to the fact that transaction history can be publicly traced, it hinders Litecoin’s fungibility. The private transaction is one solution to the problem that provides financial privacy and allows for plausible deniability. But such transactions can be selectively disclosed and validating them requires processing the entire history of transactions.

The team looked at other options like Confidential Transactions and Zk-Stark as well but decided to not go with them because while the former one would have been very expensive with large transaction sizes, the latter came with an estimated 20kb transaction size.

So, they decided to go with MW, which not only hides the amount being sent but also deletes the transaction history from the ledger.

However, it has its own disadvantages in the way that transactions must be built interactively, impossible to implement as a typical soft fork and makes private Litecoin attractions BOLT incompatible. Also, it’s currently unsuitable for the Lightning Network.

But it can be implemented without a hard fork through extension blocks.

As such, Litecoin will be using MimbleWimble protocol whose two components, Transaction Kernels and Transaction Cut-Through the team will be leveraging.

This new privacy protocol will be activated with BIP8. One year from the day the implementation is released, the soft fork will be activated, reads the proposal. The miners will be able to activate it “early with a 75% signaling threshold.”

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Author: AnTy