Let’s wander around the crypto space and take a look at what’s happening in some of the major altcoins, in terms of development and market price action.
Today we pick NEO, no doubt one of the most robust crypto platforms of all times.
Founded in 2014 and open sourced on GitHub in June 2015, its MainNet was released in October 2016 and had been running in stable capacity for two years. In June 2017 the Antshares blockchain was renamed NEO and obtained a total new rebranding into what we know it now.
The ambitious goal for NEO is to create a ‘Smart Economy’ with a distributed network and through the massive usage of smart contracts, ‘making registering, distributing and trading digital assets more intelligent.’
The China-based platform soon established itself as Ethereum’s main competitor. Although less known than its counterpart, it’s growing and fast developing new features as opposed to Ethereum that has been claimed by many as currently being a dormant project.
What are the main differences?
First of all, developers find it easier to work on NEO as they do not need to learn a new language as Solidity that was designed for Ethereum. Instead, they can develop on C++, C#, Go, Java, Python, Go.
Transaction speed is a significant bonus for NEO that can handle about 10,000 transactions per second, whereas Ethereum blockchain currently supports around 15 transactions per second.
Supply limit: NEO will only ever release 100 million coins with an inflation of 50 million developer tokens issued over time. Ethereum has an unlimited supply, with minor capped inflation each year.
Price: NEO’s all-time high was $192 in January 2018, Ethereum was $1,412 in the same month. The popularity of Ethereum probably justifies the difference in price, surely not technological superiority.
NEO 3.0 will be a robust blockchain implementation with high throughput, enhanced stability and security, an optimized smart contract system, and a feature-packed infrastructure set for diverse business application scenarios.
Let’s see what main improvements the new release will bring to the NEO blockchain
Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (dBFT) will provide single block finality, meaning the NEO blockchain cannot be forked, and transactions are irreversible. Once a transaction is confirmed on the blockchain, it cannot be reversed or canceled. For financial applications, the finality of a transaction is a necessity.
Pricing Model: there are two native tokens on the NEO blockchain, namely neo and gas. Gas is used to pay transaction fees and smart contract execution fees. Currently, the relatively high cost of deploying and running smart contracts leads to a reluctance in smart contract usage and development.
In NEO 3.0, developers have worked to reduce the deployment and execution costs of smart contracts considerably, thereby expanding the application scenarios of gas and increasing the number of decentralized applications (DApps). Before the NEO 3.0 implementation, credible projects can apply for grants from the NEO Foundation with contract deployment costs.
Neo 3.0 will launch as a new blockchain network, and users will need to swap their existing tokens for new ones, according to an official announcement.
The Chinese platform’s co-founder and core developer Erik Zhang has said the new chain is necessary because several architectural improvements to Neo’s performance and stability are not compatible with its current blockchain.
The upgrade will increase the blockchain’s speed and stability by orders of magnitude and make it suitable for large-scale commercial use. The new chain is scheduled to be completed by the second quarter of 2020, and a testnet is due to launch these days, with new features deployed for testing as they are completed.