Telegram Introduces A Desktop Test Wallet For Its GRAM Token Amid Ongoing SEC Case

Encrypted messaging app giant Telegram has rolled out a desktop test wallet for its testnet of the yet to be released crypto network, Telegram Open Network (TON).

According to CoinDesk, the test app is now available for download for Linux, macOS as well as Windows. Interested individuals can access the app from Telegram’s website and they will be able to create a wallet as well as a set of private keys. In addition, users will be able to get and send test Grams, however, at the moment, the wallet will not hold anything of value.

Currently, the test wallet can only accept Grams as it is not indicated whether other cryptos are supported. Users are awarded from 5 to 20 Gram tokens by a bot to transact.

Telegram started a blockchain project and dubbed it TON and went ahead to get funding of $1.7 billion through a private token sale in 2018. Telegram went ahead and told the investors the network would be launched before Oct.31. In this case, the releasing of the Test Gram Wallet seems like a plot to beat the deadline.

Telegram’s plans to launch TON has been put in jeopardy by SEC after it was sued by the regulator saying that the token was equivalent to security. The regulator pleaded with the courts to stop the selling of the Gram token. Telegram has insisted that the token is not a security and has asked the court to set aside the ban.

In the recent past, Telegram and the regulator have come into an agreement where Gram tokens will not be distributed until the court has heard and determined the case which will take off in February.

Telegram has since received relief from investors after they agreed to postpone the selling of the Gram token to April 31, 2020, giving the company enough time to settle issues with the SEC. it turns out that Telegram has a lot to do to convince the regulator that Gram is not a security token or risk returning the $1.7 billion to investors.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

MediaLab Buys Kik Messaging App, Shares Plans to Expand KIN Project

The messaging app Kik was sold to MediaLab this week. Now, the holding company, which also operates another product called Whisper, is set to manage Kik as well. This happened because Kik Interactive, the company behind the messaging app, decided to shut down last month.

Kik’s CEO Ted Livingston announced just last week that the company would be sold and the sale was made soon after that. According to him, MediaLab believes that Kik is still to see its “best days” and it is willing to bet on this. Now that the product was acquired, Kik will change in several aspects. One of them is the integration of ads to acquire more revenue.

Crypto Ecosystem To Continue

Kik Interactive is currently in a legal battle with the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which accuses it of violating the securities law with its Initial Coin Offering (ICO). The whole fight, which has been expensive for the company, is one of the reasons why Kik had to shut down.

This does not mean that the crypto plans of the company are dead, though. The Kin ecosystem will continue to exist if it depends on Livingston. He affirmed that he would continue to build on the ecosystem and that the messaging app would also continue its plans to provide crypto transactions.

MediaLab’s goal is to improve the app by reducing the number of bugs and glitches and collecting feedback from users in order to discover the features that could be interesting. This way, the service would continue to be useful and to offer what its clients need the most. They added;

“We are fans of Kin and believe in its long term potential. We are excited to further partner with Ted and his team on expanding the Kin integration and have plans to further support the project. We’ll have more to share on that front soon.”

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Author: Hank Klinger

Messaging Giant Telegram To Host Smart Contracts Coding Competition; $400k In TON Up For Grabs

Messaging app giant Telegram has kicked off a contest that will see developers come up with smart contracts for its new blockchain platform Telegram Open Network (TON).

According to the announcement, the contest will comprise of three parts where the award will be given for all the tasks. The awards ranges from $200,000 to $400,000 and the contest will come to an end on October 15.

The main part of the contest will be a task to develop one or additional smart contracts via the tools given within the TON blockchain distribution, this as explained in a document given by TON contest.

The other two parts of the contest comprise improvements recommendations for TON Virtual Machine as well as FunC. The last task involves TON blockchain bug bounty competition.

As per the competition’s details provided by the company, developers are expected to come up with smart contracts that can easily implement one of the five smart contracts found in the blockchain. This comprise of a multi-signature wallet, two forms of easy TON DNS Resolver smart contracts, a two party payment platform as well asynchronous two party payment channel.

According to Telegram, contestants willing to undertake the task of exploiting a bug in TON Blockchain are required to surrender a description as well as come up with a scenario of what would happen if the bug was to be exploited.

The developers are also required to exploit the bug within the TON blockchain and take away some money from another person’s wallet. This will earn the developers an award of $200,000 this will be in addition to the $200,000 award for smart contract developers.

The new contest comes at the backdrop of the much awaited Telegram virtual token known as Gram that will be launched next month. In the meantime, Telegram on sept.6 this month officially released the TON testnet explorer as well as node software. Telegram has also stated that its TON blockchain will be compatible with Ethereum Dapps.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

Stellar Foundation to Airdrop $121 Million Worth Of XLM Crypto Tokens to Keybase Messenger Users

Stellar Foundation is collaborating with messaging platform Keybase to reward Keybase clients for chatting with friends. On monday the two companies inked a deal of a 2 billion XLM airdrop worth about $121 million.

According to the announcement, this is the biggest XLM airdrop of Stellar’s five year existence. According to the agreement within the next 20 months, Keybase clients will be offered airdrops of about 100 XLM.

According to Keybase, it has 300,000 clients who are active in its different services and platform.

According to a blog post shared with CoinDesk, the clients will only need to have a valid Keybase account and the amount of XLM will automatically appear in their wallet. The XLM will appear on a monthly basis so long as the airdrop are in existence.

The company confirmed that the airdrops will be available for the next three months. However, the continuation of the program will depend on meeting various basic success metrics. According to Stellar Foundation CEO, Denelle Dixon, stated that Keybase is a crucial partner as the company pursues its adoption strategy He explained:

“The foundation’s mandate is to deliver lumens [XLM] into the world. This is part of that plan. The up to 2 billion is a really great way. And we will have checks along the way.”

The two companies are not strangers to each other as they have worked closely since March 2018 after Stellar invested heavily in Keybase’s Series B fund raising.

Dixon explained that Keybase is an example of what projects his foundation intends to invest in since Keybase have a lot in common with cryptocurrencies. He explained that the deal will allow Keybase users to know XML in details for the next 20 months.

The current airdrop comes days after Keybase upgraded various features after adopting Stellar in early May 2019. Using the Keybase platform, the users are able to transfer Stellar to various users or even phone numbers even those with no Keybase accounts. A spokesperson explained that Keybase is expected to include additional features in the near future that will comprise XLM payments.

The airdrop deal comes amid other rival messaging apps come up with their own crypto efforts. For instance, Telegram is expected to roll on its TON in the coming days while Facebook is set launch Libra.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

Japan’s Most Used Messaging App, LINE, Awarded Crypto Exchange License for BitBox

The provider of the most used messaging app in Japan, LINE, has been awarded a crypto exchange lincense by the Japanese government.

According to CoinDesk, the company which boasts of about 80 million users per month will now be able to provide crypto exchange services to its clients. The crypto trading platform will referred as Bitbox, the company said.

According to Japanese Financial Services Agency’s website, the license was approved on September 6 and was given to LVC Corp, which is a subsidiary of LINE overseeing its digital assets unit.

Takeshi Dezawa, LINE president also revealed licensure to the country’s largest stock exchange, Tokyo Stock Exchange in accordance to the laid down financial regulations.

Late last month, LINE revealed that it was at an advanced stage to develop a token economy in Japan using its LINK blockchain platform. In line with this, the company aims at providing two tokens namely, LINE for its japanese market as well as LINK for its international markets with the aim of linking service offerors to users. The company also revealed that it was in the process of introducing five decentralized dapps which serve different categories such as prediction, Q&A, product review, food review and location review utilizing different social media platforms.

According to LINE the aim of the company is to lessen the relationship structure among the service offerors and their clients so as to enhance co-creation as well as mutual growth.

Cointelegraph reports that Bitbox has been operating in Singapore but due to the tough crypto laws and guidelines in Japan, LINE was slow in applying for a license in the country. The tough licensure requirements meant that Bitbox was not available for Japanese clients.

As per the CoinDesk report, Japan is yet again to review its legislations governing the crypto industry which will have a major impact on crypto exchanges. The review is planned for 2020 to adhere to Financial Instruments and Exchange Act.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

Telegram and Lantah Dispute Over GRAM Crypto Trademark, Telegram Takes Home Injunction Win

Telegram and Lantah Dispute Over GRAM Crypto Trademark, Telegram Takes Home Injunction Win

It has been recently revealed that cloud-based instant messaging service provider, Telegram and blockchain-based commerce platform, Lantah have been in dispute over who gets the rights to the name, ‘GRAM’ for their respective crypto token reports The Block.

Telegram is supposedly demanding the latter from using the aforementioned name, which led to the involvement of the district court (a lower court) and their issuing of “a preliminary injunction,” which prevents Lantah from using the name.

As per Lexology, Telegram made the following argument at the time of their complaint (which was found in paragraph 43):

“Lantah’s unauthorized use in commerce of a service mark that is confusingly similar to Telegram Messenger’s GRAM mark has caused and is likely to continue to cause confusion or mistake, or to deceive consumers and potential consumers, the public, and the trade concerning an affiliation, connection or association between Lantah and Telegram where there is no such affiliation, connection or association.”

The Block covered the specifics as to why the Ninth Circuit was part of all this. It turns out that Lantah’s lawyers appealed the district court’s granting of the preliminary injunction by having the Ninth Circuit court (higher court) evaluate the decision prior to arriving to a conclusion.

In the case of the presence of the latter, it is usually considered a step toward the Supreme Court with a panel of judges versus just one from the district court. The final judgement? The circuit court has since sided with the district court by disclosing that Telegram’s use of ‘GRAM’ was acceptable.

Here are some of the reasons why Telegram’s uses of the trademark were deemed acceptable and why the district court’s decision towards the preliminary injunction was supported:

  1. During the ICO, Telegram provided purchasers with “Purchase Agreement for Grams” in which buyers were required to make the necessary payments by a set date to receive the GRAMS.
  2. Evidence exists in relation to Telegram’s plans of distributing GRAMS

[Author Alert] The author’s opinions above are solely based on their own self-conducted research. Assume any and all authors are using, holding, trading and/or buying cryptoassets mentioned as a portion of his or her financial portfolio. Use information at your own risk, do you own research, never invest more than you are willing to lose.

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Author: Nirmala Velupillai