Theta Mainnet 3.0 Delayed Till June; Devs Needs More Time for Elite Edge Nodes & TFUEL Staking

Theta Mainnet 3.0 Delayed Till June; Devs Needs More Time for Elite Edge Nodes & TFUEL Staking

A long-term NFT strategy and scalability issues were noted as causes for the delay. The Theta Mainnet 3.0 launch is postponed until June 30th, 2021.

On Wednesday, the Theta development team announced the “Theta Mainnet 3.0” launch would be delayed from the designated April 21 ate to June 30, 2021. Theta Labs, a leading developer of Theta blockchain, stated the launch would be delayed due to the growing NFT market and ensuring the platform works efficiently once it scales.

Theta is a decentralized video content streaming platform that allows users to share content and earn rewards in crypto. Towards the end of 2020, Theta announced its mainnet 3.0 launch in April, promising the release of Elite Edge Nodes and TFUEL staking and burning programs. This was meant to increase the value of the token by adding more utility and reducing its supply.

However, the new upgrade mainnet will not be released till the start of summer as the development team requested “additional time to conduct a more thorough code review and testing.”

The team is building out its Theta NFT marketplace in response to the booming non-fungible token (NFT) market in 2021, the statement reads. The team is building ‘key partnership opportunities” in the NFT marketplace to incorporate these foundational elements before the mainnet launches.

Additionally, the platform aims to expand its video streaming platform to reduce minting costs and offer NFTs on Ethereum. The team will integrate cross-chain bridges between Theta, Ethereum, and other blockchains to enable seamless transfer, storage, and minting of assets on the blockchain. The post further reads,

“In the longer term, we believe that Theta’s Elite Edge Nodes can become a true, universal decentralized edge storage for all NFTs and does not rely on any centralized platform.”

However, this delay is not new to Theta, who postponed the launch of Mainnet 2.0 in spring last year. The platform was launched later in the year without any technical hitches, making the team confident with the latest postponement.

“So the team is confident this is the right choice for the long term,” a spokesperson said.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Ethereum Layer 2 Solution, Hermez Network, Mainnet is Live; Using ZK-Rollup’s For Cheap Payments

Ethereum Layer 2 Solution, Hermez Network, Mainnet is Live; Using ZK-Rollup’s For Cheap Payments

Hermez Network, a layer 2 blockchain scaling solution on the Ethereum network, is now live on the mainnet. Hermez’s launch on Ethereum hopes to solve some of the transaction bottlenecks that have plagued the network.

Cheaper and Faster Transaction Speed

This is a major relief for developers who rely on Ethereum to run their applications.

Hermes uses the Zk-rollup, which compiles hundreds of transactions into a single transaction while eliminating data storage and gas fees for verifying transaction blocks.

Hermez’s zk-rollup is set to address this issue with the off-chain aggregator and promises to increase transaction speed 100 times over.

Jordi Baylina, head of tech at Hermez, said this latest release would see users save around 90% in gas fees.

With each transaction on the Ethereum network costing roughly $17, a 90% discount would see developers pay a meager $1.60 per transaction.

The first set of digital assets supported by Hermez includes Tether, Ether, Wrapped Bitcoin, Dai, and Hermez’s token HEZ.

The development team says other crypto-assets will be added as time goes by.

The Ethereum blockchain has witnessed network congestion and higher gas fees in recent months.

This is due to many reasons. Chief of which includes the popularity of the decentralized finance (DeFi) of 2020 and the non-fungible token (NFT) frenzy of 2021.

These bottlenecks have seen gas fees climb as high as $40 per transaction making the Ethereum network unfavorable for users.

Gas fees are not the only issues that have plagued Ethereum. The transaction speed or throughput, as experts call them, is also a major problem. Ethereum presently averages 15 transactions per second (TPS) which is slow compared to Polkadot’s 1000 TPS.

Layer 2 blockchain solutions using rollups have helped Ethereum stay in the DeFi game despite its challenges. Rollups are of two types zero-knowledge proof (zk-rollup) and optimistic rollup (ORU).

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has spoken highly of zk-rollups being the future as the world waits for the deployment of Ethereum 2.0. Buterin said zk-rollups would win in all use cases, both in the medium and long-term scenario.

In speaking of the sister scaling solution, Buterin said ORU would address short-term computational needs.

Hermez Pursuing Full Decentralization

The Hermez zk-rollup is a big win for the Ethereum community, which is seriously challenged in the DeFi market by blockchain projects like Polkadot and Cardano. The layer 2 scaling solution is just an overlaying blockchain on the Ethereum mainnet and is a nested blockchain.

Operating mostly off-chain and consuming as little as 10 bytes per smart contract transaction, Hermez’s zk-rollup solution is touted as a major plus for the Ethereum network. In contrast to the optimistic rollup offering, funds are easily withdrawn from the network without a lockdown window.

Pol Lanski, lead of ecosystem development Hermez, said there are still some parameters the development team is working on to make it a fully decentralized network. The company said 40% of all gas fees they receive would be channeled towards building more decentralized software.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

Optimistic Ethereum Finally Soft Launches Mainnet; Synthetix (SNX) Staking Goes Live Too

Optimistic Ethereum Finally Soft Launches Mainnet; Synthetix (SNX) Staking Goes Live Too

To “alleviate the gas crisis,” the Layer 2 solution has taken its first big step so that small users don’t get priced out by extremely high fees.

Just at the beginning of this week, average fees on Ethereum skyrocketed to a new high. This was just one of many such huge spikes in the fees the network has been seeing since last year, especially after decentralized finance (DeFi) gained momentum in the second half of 2020.

Amidst “undeniably insane” demand for Ethereum, the layer 2 solution, Optimistic Ethereum, took “first material steps towards alleviating the gas crisis by deploying to mainnet.”

The soft launch is just a peek with a full flash, public testament coming in late February or early March so that anyone can deploy and interact with it.

As for the public mainnet, which will implement fixes from public testament and be audited will come “as soon as humanly possible,” says the team.

Synthetix staking now live on L2 mainnet!

The same day, DeFi blue chip Synthetix announced the launch of staking on the L2 mainnet of Optimistic Ethereum.

This is the first layer 2 scaling solution with full cross-layer porting capability for smart contracts without rewriting them as such, making it a huge step for Synthetix and the entire Ethereum ecosystem.

This first phase of migration is designed for smaller SNX holders who get priced out due to high gas costs, reads the official announcement.

To migrate to L2, those participating in SNX trading on L1 must pay back any staking debt in sUSD first to unstake their SNX. For now, Metamask is the only supported wallet on L2, with support for more wallets coming next week. As for migrating escrowed SNX to L2, it is optional and may cost up to 0.5 ETH.

Once migrated, SNX holders can stake their DeFi token to mint sUSD, an option to be launched next week.

Synthetic’s staking activity has been growing steadily throughout last year, with daily active stakers increasing 187% over this period.

Now that Synthetix staking is live on Optimistic Ethereum’s L2 mainnet, SNX is having a wild time, hitting new ATHs one after another. The token price went above $17 today, following a surge of 126% in 2021 so far. Meanwhile, only 2.6% of SNX’s total supply is available on exchanges.

In contrast to this growth, the total value locked (TVL) in the project has fallen to $1.8 billion from Jan. 14 of $2.48 bln.

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Author: AnTy

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

Decentralized Protocol, Graph, Mainnet Goes Live; Coinbase Lists GRT For Trading

The day The Graph mainnet went live, Coinbase also listed the network token.

On Thursday, the San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange announced support for The Graph (GRT) at Coinbase.com. Coinbase customers can now buy, sell, convert, send, receive, and store GRT.

The token available in all Coinbase supported regions except for New York State is also available on its Android and iOS apps.

The same day the exchange also enabled earning up to $3 in GRT tokens on Coinbase Earn.

The decentralized protocol for indexing and querying data from blockchains, Graph makes it possible to build serverless dApps that run entirely on public infrastructure. It provides developers all the public data to build decentralized applications.

On Thursday, the project launched its maninnet after three long years of testnet. The testnet saw more than 200 Indexers deploying nodes and over 1,600 individuals successfully completing the Curator program.

In six months, the project saw the usage of its hosted service growing 10x from 1 billion in June to over 10 billion in November. Top DeFi applications like Curve, Zapper, Uniswap, Decentraland, and others are already using their Subgraphs. Yaniv Tal, Project Lead and Co-founder of The Graph said,

“It’s surreal that after years of hard work, our vision for a global decentralized indexing and API layer for Web3 has become real. We really believe in decentralization and the launch of The Graph Network is a major milestone for enabling humans to cooperate and organize in a decentralized way.”

The native token of the project GRT is used to coordinate the network, and node operators called Indexers can stake and earn the tokens for processing queries. The ERC20 token is currently trading at $0.19, up 62%.

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Author: AnTy

Ethereum Rallies Above $400 as Proof of Stake Launch “ETH 2.0” Scheduled for Dec 1

Ethereum 2.0’s v1.0 has been released along with its mainnet deposit address. With this release, ETH 2.0 will have a genesis of 1606824000 — December 1, 2020, at 12 pm UTC.

There must be at least 16,384 32-ETH validator deposits made a week before the deadline for the genesis to trigger. In case the threshold is not met on time, the genesis will be kicked off whenever it does, as per the official announcement.

As expected, the price of Eth jumped above $407 in response to the much-anticipated news. Yesterday, ETH dropped under $375 despite bitcoin rallying.

But today, as BTC went back above $14,200, the crypto market turned green in tandem, and so did ETH, which continues to rise.

As Binance noted last month, the locking of ETH for staking could see a potential supply shock, which means a “dramatic price surge and trigger” due to “unprecedented levels of retail FOMO.”

Unlike the usual when ETH leads the rallies, this time, Bitcoin has been stealing the thunder as it increased by 30% in value than Ether’s mere 12% in the month of October.

But despite Bitcoin being back on the move today to the important $14k level, Ether is the one up 6%, the biggest gainer among the top 35 cryptocurrencies.

And with this, green has splashed across the crypto market.

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Author: AnTy

Ethereum 2.0 Devs Debate On The Legitimacy Of The Just-Launched ETH 2.0 Deposit Contract

Ethereum 2.0 Beacon Chain is nearing full mainnet release as developers announce an unconfirmed launch of the deposit contract. However, some developers have strongly warned against sending your ether (ETH) tokens to the contract before the official announcement from ETH 2.0 lead developers.

As the crypto social media world remains glued to the U.S. Presidential Election, Ethereum enthusiasts are rejoicing on the “possible” launch of the long-awaited Ethereum 2.0 deposit contract. Following the successful launch of the Zinken testnet, ETH 2.0 focused developers have continuously teased at the launch of Beacon Chain – Phase 0 – starting with the deposit contract.

A deposit contract was apparently posted on GitHub, gaining support from some developers on Ethereum as excitement levels across the community hit peak levels. No official announcement from the lead ETH 2.0 developers has surfaced yet.

The deposit contract will allow users to switch their “ETH 1.0” tokens to the proof of stake ETH tokens. This will lay the groundwork and foundation for users to start staking on the platform and earn rewards.

The contract was apparently posted from lead Ethereum Foundation developer Carl Beekhuizen’s GitHub account, making a case for the release of ‘v1.0.0 eth2.0-deposit-cli’. However, a section of the community has raised doubts on whether Carl’s account is hacked or compromised – with no other channel or developer reporting the release.

Despite the mainstream focus on the U.S Presidential elections, the Ethereum community still celebrated one of ETH 2.0 major steps to a full launch in 2020. A lead developer at ConsenSys, Ben Edgington, however, is cautioning users on sending their cash to the deposit smart contract yet stating the launch will be in the coming “hours.”

Afri Schoedon, a long time Ethereum contributor, previously stated the Beacon Chain would launch in November – a prospect that is increasingly looking to be true. Speaking to Coindesk, David Rugendyke, from ETH 2 staking DApp Rocket Pool cautioned the ETH community that the deposit contract would take a while, but it’s earing its mainnet launch soon. He said,

“This is a tool for generating keys needed for making deposits on the ETH2 deposit contract.

So it looks like they’re announcing this tool is ready to go for mainnet, at least that’s my take.”

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Author: Lujan Odera

PoolTogether’s ‘No Loss’ Gambling Platform Utilizes Chainlink’s VRF on Ethereum to Select Winners

Chainlink announces its verifiable random function on the Ethereum mainnet, bringing a host of benefits to the decentralized platform. PoolTogether, a gamified savings platform that allows users to gamble without losing, became the first platform to launch on Chainink’s verifiable randomness function (VRF). After two successful versions, PoolTogether launched Version 3 update on Thursday, allowing users to create their own new games implementing their own rules.

Chainlink plans to expand VRF to multiple blockchains.

Chainlink VRF is a decentralized randomness generator useful in improving lotteries, gambling, and gaming systems – both traditional and decentralized. Despite currently having full focus on implementing VRF on Ethereum mainnet-based platforms, the developers are looking forward to implementations to other blockchains.

Chainlink co-founder Sergey Nazarov confirmed with CoinTelegraph that several projects have inquired about the randomness function – gaming-focused Matic Network being one of them. Over 10 projects have worked on the testnet versions, while others such as PoolTogether used it on the mainnet.

“And I also know that a number of the chains that we’re integrating into, interestingly enough, whether they’re gaming-focused or not, already have people lined up to use it when we’ve finalized our integration to that chain.”

According to Sergey, Chainlink VRF is switching its focus to gaming and gambling-specific blockchains as rising Ethereum fees scare away gaming dApps from the platform. He said,

“And many users for gaming have now started to move to other more gaming-specific, which is then also where we’ll have Chainlink VRF soon as well.”

PoolTogether uses Chainlink VRF on Ethereum mainnet

As mentioned before, PoolTogether is the first use case of Chainlink VRF on Ethereum mainnet. The decentralized gambling platform aims to give users a “lossless” random game. The platform uses Chainlink VRF to randomly select and reward one winner with crypto each week from a pool of savers. Well, you may wonder, how does no one lose on this gambling platform?

On the surface, PoolTogether collects Dai stablecoins in exchange from gamblers for raffle tickets and pools the tokens together. The pool then earns interest on Compound Finance, and a random raffle ticket is selected, to which the full interest from the pool is given. Everyone then gets their DAI stablecoins back.

So far, PoolTogether has distributed over $34,000 in rewards on the platform and plans to expand its platform with its third version launch. According to the team, PoolTogether V3 will allow users to create new games and pools using any asset available on the Compound Finance network, including Ether (ETH), Tether (USDT), Circle’s stablecoin, USDC, and Uniswap (UNI), among others.

The V3 also includes Chainink’s VRF system, which will replace the administrator that selects the rewards making it more decentralized and, in turn, trustless.

“So we see this as a continuing step of a long term mission. Ultimately, it’s important because building a system that doesn’t rely on any single person or entity can have a much greater impact on the world,” PoolTogether co-creator Leighton Cusack said.

According to Sergey, PoolTogether sets the pace for gaming and gambling platforms to decentralize randomness systems. While there’s still some room to fill before corporate gaming firms switch from their centralized randomness systems to decentralized systems, Sergey predicts a massive scandal could change all this.

“Once in a while in the gaming industry, you see these kinds of flashes of concern from users, you see some gaming sites somewhere front-running users from inside the gaming site, or you see a scandal with some gambling thing that’s regulated, but some employee still was playing the game, and they still were able to win against other players,” he said. “And I think whenever those happen, those bigger firms do start to seek additional solutions.”

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Author: Lujan Odera

The Most Anticipated Token is Gearing Up for its Launch This Week

In anticipation of the mainnet launch, Filecoin, which aims to be a decentralized storage network, has entered its lift-off week.

First released in mid-2014, the community is eagerly awaiting the Filecoin launch. In August 2017, the project had raised over $200 million within 30 minutes during the last bull run. And now, as the crypto market gears up for yet another one, Filecoin is ready for yet another big step.

Barry Silbert, the founder and CEO of Digital Currency Group, the parent company of Grayscale, Genesis, and others, is already excited as he wrote, “Who else is excited about the launch of Filecoin next week?”

Given that it has already been more than six years for this project to be in the market, it is past time that it leaves its testnet phase, and its mainnet is launched.

Filecoin Network Overview
Source: Network Overview

“The hottest upcoming token is Filecoin–joining Polkadot, @avalancheavax, etc. as one of the most anticipated of the year,” as noted FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried.

While it is clear that FIL is “very hot right now,” he did clear it up that one shouldn’t necessarily buy it as there is no knowing if it will go up or down in the future.

Cryptocurrency exchange OKEx has already announced that it will open deposit and withdrawal services right after the project’s launch on Oct. 15, 2020. The exchange will also rebalance its FILUSD index and make changes to its perpetual swap contract’s trading rules.

According to Colin Wu of Chinese crypto media publication, another Asian exchange, Huobi’s Pool Mining Machine Mall, will be launching a Filecoin mining machine.

Amidst this anticipation launch, Wu also shared that while supported by Chinese investors and miners, “its main distributed content storage will be greatly restricted by the Chinese government’s content supervision, and may even be stopped by the Chinese government.”

Moreover, if any politically related information is discovered to be stored on it, Filecoin will also be “severely punished.” Because miners derive the income from it, the risk of the content violations will also fall on them.

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Author: AnTy

Ethereum-Based Scaling Solution, SKALE Network, Deploys Phase 2 Of Its Mainnet

  • SKALE Network announces the launch of its phase two mainnet launch.
  • The Ethereum-scaling project goes live with over $78 million staked on the platform.

In an announcement made available to BEG, SKALE – a decentralized Ethereum-based project backed by Winklevoss-backed Gemini and ConsenSys – announced the successful deployment of Phase 2 of its mainnet. The platform aims to increase scalability, increase throughput, and reduce the high gas fees on the Ethereum blockchain.

According to the statement, a total of $78 million has already been staked on the platform as the Phase 2 launches. The amount was raised from over 4,000 SKALE users and businesses using the network from over 90 countries globally. So far, SKALE Network has 130 network nodes spread across 46 countries.

SKALE, an ‘elastic blockchain network,’ is a Layer 2 scalability solution built on Ethereum offering a convenient and efficient platform for decentralized apps (DApps) to build on. The platform promises over 1,000 elastic SKALE blockchains offering sub-second transaction times and higher throughput than the current Ethereum blockchain.

Jack O’Holleran, CEO and co-founder of SKALE, stated the launch of Phase 2 and the launch of the SKL token would boost the development of the raging DeFi market, Web3 applications, and gaming as transaction speeds on SKALE increase and fees lower.

He further stated that SKALE Phase 2 mainnet launch would mitigate the persistent problems on Ethereum, such as high gas costs, even with a booming DeFi market. He further stated,

“Validators and delegators alike have real incentives to participate as SKALE’s economic model pools security similarly to how DeFi projects pool liquidity.”

Over the past few months, Ethereum has faced a surge in gas costs as the DeFi and gaming markets boomed to billion-dollar valuations. The issues on Ethereum have set several projects to look for better options. Recently, AI intelligence firm, SinguarityNET announced plans to move a “significant portion” of its operations from Ethereum to Cardano blockchain.

This follows the launch of Phase 1 of the SKALE Network in July this year.

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Author: Lujan Odera