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A New Blockchain for Kik’s KIN Cryptocurrency

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KIN
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Popular messaging app Kik entered the cryptocurrency market late last year with an ICO for their KIN token. They raised a total of $100M USD and established themselves as a major player in the social media cryptocurrency market. Although they originally started as an ERC-20 token, the Kin Foundation keeps their eye on developing trends. In the first quarter of 2018, they started the process of porting over to the Stellar XLM blockchain. Now, it seems that they’ve decided to hard fork that blockchain create an entirely new product.

The Kin Foundation remains closely partnered with Stellar and hopes that their development process can offer some value back to the original blockchain. However, creating a new blockchain is a time intensive and expensive process. There’s a good chance that the new Kin infrastructure will not be completed any time soon. Investors will have to be content with the ERC-20 token, which Kik intends to support going forward.

The History of the KIN Token

As with many recent ICOs and Token Generation Events, Kik started with a project on the ERC-20 standard. Ethereum’s flexibility and smart contract functionality allow for a tremendous scope of projects, but they depend on the Ethereum blockchain for their code base. The explosion in market capitalization at the end of 2017 showed some weaknesses in Ethereum’s scalability. Due to unprecedented transaction volume, Ethereum suffered slowdowns and high fees. Larger projects that can afford to do so now look to other blockchains to avoid these problems.

The solution for KIN, at the time, lay in the Stellar blockchain. XLM’s early adoption of the Lightning Network suggested that they would better deal with scalability issues moving forward. The Kin Foundation stated that KIN would be more at home in Stellar’s focused mindset. Ethereum’s broader approach to decentralized applications fit too loosely. Now, it seems KIN believes there is more room to expand and a custom blockchain will help that plan.

The Advantages of a Custom Blockchain

Ethereum standards offer a high degree of customization, but it’s nothing compared to a blockchain built from the ground up. While KIN intends to keep much of the Stellar code base in their hard fork, new options will become available to them. Stellar depends on a Byzantine Agreement System to validate their transactions, and switching to a custom version would reopen the algorithm for KIN. A Proof of Work or Proof of Stake system would grant them differing advantages and abilities.

Control over the code base itself would also allow KIN to apply updates more regularly – and more specifically. Placing themselves on the Stellar blockchain without hard forking would leave them more dependent on Stellar for pushing updates and upgrades. While in control of their own blockchain, Kin can evaluate the needs of their developers and change the code base appropriately.

The Final Evolution

While there is some danger in constantly shifting something as important as blockchain basis, KIN shows great flexibility in doing so. Their development team does not seem to have suffered from the moves and indeed moves forward with projects like the KIN Reward Engine SDK for Unity. The Kin Foundation’s desire to create a social currency community remains at the forefront of their development. So long as they continue to focus on expanding that community while providing a strong development platform, KIN will continue to do well.

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Disclaimer: This article should not be taken as, and is not intended to provide, investment advice. Global Coin Report and/or its affiliates, employees, writers, and subcontractors are cryptocurrency investors and from time to time may or may not have holdings in some of the coins or tokens they cover. Please conduct your own thorough research before investing in any cryptocurrency and read our full disclaimer.

Image courtesy of Amayzun via Flickr

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Blockchain-Focused ETF Arrives on London Stock Exchange

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The crypto community is still waiting for the US SEC to approve Bitcoin ETFs, with speculation which application might get approval being one of the hottest topics in 2018. However, come 2019, the US government shutdown dragged on, and the Bitcoin ETF request which had the most potential to see a grant got withdrawn by the very companies that submitted the application.

While the question of BTC ETF remains hanging in the air, blockchain-focused ETFs seem to be a different matter entirely. In a recent announcement by an independent investment managed firm called Invesco, the company has stated that it was about to launch the largest blockchain-focused ETF in the world. They managed to go through with this plan, and the ETFs have reached the London Stock Exchange today, March 11th.

The exchange-traded fund includes a portfolio containing as many as 48 different firms which are bringing exposure to the emerging technology. Among them, there is Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing, which is a well-known creator of chips used for crypto mining, as well as the CME Group, which is the first regulated exchange in the US which launched Bitcoin futures. There are many other well-known companies as well, such as Intel, Microsoft, and others.

Chris Mellor, the Invesco’s head of ETF equity product management in Europe, said that blockchain has a huge potential to increase earnings, even though…

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Could Jeff Bezos Turn to Bitcoin to Hide Fortune from Wife?

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Amazon’s Jeff Bezos has made numerous headlines recently due to his overly-publicized divorce, which shows all signs of being one of the most expensive ones — if not THE most expensive one — in modern history. According to estimates, it might cost him as much as $70 billion, which will make his soon-to-be-ex-wife the richest woman in human history.

However, as the process continues to unfold, many have started wondering if things may have ended up differently for Bezos if he turned to Bitcoin for help.

Bitcoin as a divorce tool?

In the last several years — since Bitcoin and other cryptos hit fame — many have started turning to BTC during their divorce proceedings. In fact, it can even be said that using the largest cryptocurrency in this way has become a new trend. The trend has been gaining so much strength that numerous law companies started including advice on what to do in regards to Bitcoin as part of their websites.

However, while the trend has been picking up in recent years, it is nowhere near as easy as it might seem. For example, if there is even a suspicion of a spouse having undisclosed holdings appears during the divorce process, it might be enough to impact the final decision of the judge. In other words, even if there is a complete lack of evidence, but…

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Three Biggest Things To Know Come Cryptocurrency Tax Season

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In recent years, digital cash systems known as cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Litecoin have exploded into the public eye. A blend of cash and stocks, their use and value has grown exponentially. In 2017, the IRS decided to focus great effort on taxing them. In theory, this should be as simple as calculating taxes on any other type of property, bond, or other assets. Cryptocurrency, however, presents a unique challenge. The full extent of one person’s crypto activity can stretch across dozens of platforms and take a variety of different forms. This makes it difficult to gather all of this information cohesively, much less begin the seemingly- complicated process of reporting it.

These three tips should help anyone looking to legally report their crypto activity to figure out where to start.

Documentation is key!

There are dozens of different “exchanges” individuals can use to change their cash into crypto. When the flat currency is changed into cryptocurrency at the exchange, you establish your cost basis. This makes this data crucial when you begin the process of reporting.  Those who have used a variety of different exchanges should keep detailed records of everywhere that they made trades. Once tax season arrives, most exchanges will allow users to view their entire trading history with that exchange. This information will be necessary later to complete taxes.

Calculate your total gains

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